Signs Point to Controversy

Billboards were proposed near Dexter schools to gain additional revenue; board tables discussions

By: Nick LeBlanc and Caden Koenig

To kick off the year, Dexter Community Schools created a proposal to increase revenue for all of its constituent schools. The proposal is for two electronic billboards that would project advertisements.

According to dexterschools.org, the billboards are predicted to generate over $40,000 each year (twenty thousand each). The billboards are planned to be placed on the corner of Shield and Baker Road and on Dexter-Ann Arbor Road, east of the current traffic light. To go along with the two billboards, the proposal also included a request for one pedestrian-actuated warning system — a crosswalk much like the one already on Shield Road, where lights flash to warn passing cars of pedestrians. This would make the trip shorter and safer for students who walk or bike to school. Lastly, the school would get free advertising at anytime on both of the billboards.

If the billboards do become a reality, according to dexterschools.org, every advertisement has to follow Board Policy 9700, which states that there cannot be any advertisements that promote alcohol, drugs, sex, religion, political opinion, violence, or R-rated material.

The reason for the proposal of these signs is that they would help the school district immensely with funding for certain academic necessities that run out near the end of the school year, such as lined paper. In addition, planners have been fading out due to lack of funding, leaving students without the commodity that has been consistently provided at the high school in previous years. Some teachers at the high school have discussed the positive outlook on the billboard project’s ability to provide revenue for the school.

“Wherever the revenue ends up, it will hopefully loosen up money from the general fund for other student-driven initiatives,” DHS math teacher Paige Lumpiesz said.

However, as always, there is opposition to this proposal too. People feel like the light pollution could be annoying, the billboards could be distracting, and some don’t see why the school system can’t just pursue a grant.

Some opposition may be unwarranted, however, because according to the proposal, the billboards have no light effect on any nearby houses due to their low-light nature. The proposal continues by saying neighboring houses with porch lights on will have more of an effect than the billboards. The argument that they may present a distraction is viable. The distraction to drivers is a possible danger because there are constantly new drivers going to and from the high school, and they could grab the attention of experienced drivers too much as well.

As of early March, discussions between concerned citizens and the school board in regards to the new billboards have been pushed back until later in the year.

The Day After

On March 16, 2012, the Dexter community quickly came together to overcome a natural disaster that affected many

By: Nick LeBlanc and Caden Koenig

The peace that preceded the tornado was followed by shock. Dexter’s bubble finally popped.  A community that once stood in silence came together. Adversity was a rare thing for the 4,127 citizens of Dexter to face, as nothing serious has ever happened in the small, peaceful town.

Before the sun rose that day, the streets of each neighborhood were packed with insurance companies, disaster relief companies, and newscasters getting prepared to deliver a story about  a village in southeast Michigan.  News about the tornado reached all over the nation reaching even to Hawaii.

Dexter exemplified a close knit community. Local businesses and restaurants donated food and other goods to the devastated areas. Busch’s played a key role in helping families by donating cases of water and having a cookout that night. To add to this, Mill Creek Middle School and Creekside Intermediate both combined with The Red Cross, and opened up their doors for people who needed a place to stay that night

Gloves, long pants, boots, protective eyewear, tools.  All were used to collectively gear up the people of Dexter.  Adults and kids alike came from all over the district to help the unfortunate families in Huron Farms, Horseshoe Bend, and numerous other businesses and households.  Kids ventured out into the neighborhood to help clean up the possessions of others like drywall, insulation, siding, furniture, roofing shingles, and, sadly, more.  Despite the chaos of the tornado, citizens of Dexter were at their friendliest.  People walked around with food and water for the affected and for the workers.  Businesses, like Busch’s by Huron Farms, opened their pantry to help feed families that lost their ability to fulfill the task of preparing something as basic as food.

The winds that the tornado produced equated to those consistent with an EF3 tornado; easily ripping through the seemingly insignificant village.  Over one hundred houses were hit and thirteen were completely totaled.  In total, the damage took a

In all, while the people may have had different opinions, goals, and lifestyles, in the end the community came together and put aside their differences.  This is because we’re all human and deserve love during times of grief.  By coming together during the tornado the people of Dexter shows why we live by one phrase: Dreadstong.

Pizza, Nosebleeds, Chaos

Then seventh graders, two editors remember how a 5:15 greenish sky distruped the calm, forever impacting their lives

by Caden Koenig and Nick LeBlanc

Caden Koenig:

Remembering back, as a seventh grader all the days seem like a blur. As a seventh grader the experiences of the whole year feel like one memory. This is with the exception of March 15th and the few days that followed it.

The day started as an average Michigan day: 70 degrees and sunny… in March. All morning, the weather was celebrated with T-shirts and shorts. It was a fantastic surprise considering the prior days were 40 degrees at the most.

Now, like I said, most of my memories blur as just being an average day and so was the beginning of this day. In fact, I even remember walking home with friends.

It was about 3:30 pm and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky. The day slowly progressed with my friends, and I was likely playing basketball or football outside.

Around 4:30 the clouds quickly started to roll in and the sky got darker and darker.  My parents had ordered Jets pizza for dinner.

We planned to eat on our patio in our backyard. By the time my dad went to get the pizza, 10 minutes later, the Severe Weather Warning Alert blared through the television. Immediately following, the tornado siren from the village started echoing.

At about 5:15, the sky was a green tint, the thunder was loud, the lightning lit up the sky with every strike, and my dad and I were eating Jet’s on the porch. However, this did not last long due to a mix of the uncomfortably high wind speeds, and my mom freaking out about us being outside. So, we rushed to the basement with our candles, flash lights, and pizza due to the power outage.

By 6:00, it was over. The shock set in almost instantly. The roads were flooded. Trees were uprooted. Clothes, rugs, and furniture lay throughout the neighborhood. My family and I sat on our porch for hours unsure what to do.

I had always looked up to my parents when I didn’t know what to do, but at this moment it seemed like nobody knew how to act.  It seemed surreal, not only that night but the days that followed as well.

Nick LeBlanc:

Calm. The sky, the temperature, the people.  All was calm. The birds chirped welcomingly till it became a normality to the ear. The pleasantly curious warm air tiptoed through the trees and reached as the breeze caressed human skin. Kids walked and played as the seductive nature lured kids to embrace the day.

I took my time on the walk home that day.  Fully indulging in the surprising beauty of the day. Even the sight of my colleague, Caden Koenig, leaking blood from his nasal cavity wasn’t enough to take away from the grace of the day. Besides the spontaneous nose bleed and the warm winter day (yes, March 15th is still considered winter), the day was normal.

After my arrival home, things settled down as I waited for my father to return home to take me to baseball practice. That’s when the peace of the day began to change. Seemingly out of nowhere, an overcast of distasteful clouds took to the sky.  The welcomingly chirp of the birds was halted.  Kids went back inside as a brigade of dark clouds approached from the distance.

Being a curious kid, I was constantly checking the sky behind my deck.  As per usual, when a storm was in sight, I made constant, annoying suggestions claiming there was a tornado.  As cliché as it sounds, I was actually right for once.

The wall of wind was in the distance, but since I knew the approximate travel of the storm, I felt the urgency to tell my brother and father. While my brother and I decided the best idea was to run into the basement, my father thought the best idea was to inspect the tornado from up close. After realizing that the cone of wind was indeed a tornado and in our neighborhood, he finally came to the conclusion that maybe he should be in the basement.

We looked out the windows in the basement and all we saw was the gray of the storm. We heard the wind rushing against the house and the hail bombarding the siding. Eventually a tree fell and blocked our view of everything, even the ominous gray color.

The sun came out. It seemed calm again, but after the shock dissipated, it was clear that nothing was calm. My friends and I decided to walk the neighborhood.  Police, people, and the remnants of destroyed houses were a common sight around evry block.

The calm scene that was set earlier was gone. The new scene had rolled in: chaos.

BREAKING: Head Football Coach Garrett Chapel Resigns

By Nick LeBlanc, Mason Monroe & Alex Strang

Dexter’s new head varsity football coach, Garrett Chapel, resigned Wednesday, 22 days after being hired.

In addition to being hired as a football coach, Chapel was also hired as a physical education teacher to fill a vacancy created by Eric Santor when he resigned earlier in the year.

“He got our hopes up and crushed our dreams,” sophomore football player Khalid Dimo said. “In his speech to the team he said that we can win here and we won’t quit. And then he quits.”

According to Superintendent Dr. Chris Timmis, Chapel stated that the cause of his resignation was due to immediate family business.  Despite the resignation, Chapel was devoted to the students and players at DHS.

“Mr. Chapel actively pursued this opportunity and showed extreme interest in DHS and our kids,” Timmis said in a statement.  “Every indication we had was that Mr. Chapel was fully invested in our players and Dexter.  It is unfortunate that we have this sudden change in direction.”

After losing their new coach so swiftly, a multitude of emotions were shown by past and current Dexter football players.

“It’s disappointing that the football program keeps suffering setbacks as it’s trying to move forward,” sophomore varsity football player Alex Mills said. “I’m playing tennis [next year].”

“It’s unfortunate,” junior quarterback George Deljevic said, adding he is still planning to play football next year.

“I saw him recruiting a lot of kids so he seemed really committed to turning the program around, so I was surprised when I heard the news,” senior football player Joey Hiser said.

After hearing the sudden news, the administration at DHS plans on re-starting the process of hiring a new coach immediately.

“We will find a high-quality and committed leader for our football program and our students,” Timmis said. “We firmly believe that everything happens for a reason and this opportunity will lead to a greater future for DCS and our students.”

Chapel had been hired to replace former Head Coach Ken Koenig who was asked to resign in late November.

Dexter vs. Fowlerville

The Dreads can’t stop Fowlerville’s offense, falling 49-13 in the season opener on August 26

By Nick LeBlanc

During the Dreads’ opening drive, a holding call and an illegal man downfield call spoiled a seemingly promising drive.  More mental mistakes came at other inconvenient times during the game, too.

The costly mistakes proved too much to overcome as Fowlerville defeated Dexter 49-13.

“I think we could’ve done a better job of playing smarter and playing our own game of football,” senior Travon Reid said.

The Dreads first scored in the second quarter when senior Joey Hiser found junior Nick Fileccia wide open in the end zone.  However, Dexter failed to convert on the extra point as it was blocked.

During the game, senior Joey Hiser and junior George Deljevic shared time at quarterback for the Dreads.

Once the the first half ended, with Dexter trailing 28-6, the Dreads became visibly tired.  At the defensive end, they began to give up big run after big run.

A big part of that is the lack of depth the Dreads have on both offense and defense.

“It’s tough because the linemen are playing both ways the whole game,” senior Chris Kaufman said. “That starts to take a toll on our running game.”

Despite the loss, the Dreads still have some positive things to reflect on.

“Even though we lost, we all kept our heads up and played as hard as we could,” Kaufman said. “We could expand on our confidence and putting all of our hard work during practice into our games.” The loss against Fowlerville marks the 24th consecutive defeat for the Dreads, but that won’t deter the Dreads. With eight regular season games remaining, the boys are looking to retain a positive outlook.

“This team has more heart and character than any other team I have coached in the last 25 years,” Head Coach Ken Koenig said. “We made some mental mistakes last night at crucial times that set us back. They are all correctable things that we will get right to work on.”

The Sad Truth: The DHS Student Section is Dying

By Caden Koenig & Nick LeBlanc

Over the past two years the student section has been a staple for many students’ lives at Dexter High School.  It was a place to spend time with fellow classmates to have a good time.  However, as of lately, the student section has seen a steep decrease in participation during this year’s football and basketball seasons.

In the past two years, the men’s basketball district games typically produced a good showing.  During this year’s district games it seemed like the attendance in the student section was nearly half of what it used to be.  In addition, almost all season the men’s basketball team has seen low attendance in the the section with almost no participation.  This steep decline in attendance and participation has led to an impact on the basketball team itself, players said.

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March Madness 2016

By Nick LeBlanc

March is the season for madness.  Especially with teams hitting buzzer beaters to advance to the next round, like Wisconsin and Northern Iowa, or teams completely breaking down to end their journey to the title, also like Northern Iowa. The madness also resides with this year’s upsets, which have created busted brackets and a busted morale.  Just talk to any Michigan State fan.

The biggest upset of this year’s March Madness, which I briefly mentioned already, was when No. 2 seed Michigan State lost to No. 15 seed Middle Tennessee State. MSU was the co-favorite to win the NCAA Tournament. The Spartans’ loss led to busted brackets and busted dreams of thousands of people hoping to finally win a March Madness pool.

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3-Sport Athlete: A Rapid Decline

By Nick LeBlanc

The years of not caring about grades are over. In turn, the years of three sport athletes are over.

Being accepted into college has become so competitive that sports have began taking a back seat. Due to the rigor of many student’s schedules, and the commitment required from playing a sport, students are forced to give up playing sports they love to make sure they get the best grades possible to stay competitive in the hunt for college.

Junior Rylee Kim, who used to play three sports but had to quit basketball to manage the workload of academics, is a prime example on how heavy the era of competitiveness has hit Dexter High School.

“Sometimes I had multiple sports going on at one time, so I had to drop a sport to spend more time on academics so I wouldn’t feel as overwhelmed,” Kim said.

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The Anatomy of Finals

The three main components of finals at Dexter High School

By Caden Koenig, Truman Stovall, Gigi Saadeldin & Nick LeBlanc

Test-Taking

Test-taking is hard enough, especially with all of the pressure of final exams; nevertheless, being confident in an answer should be all it takes for you to fill in the bubble “A”, “B”, “C”, “D”, or even that unsavory “E.” Sadly, this is not the reality students are met with during tests due to individual thought processes, especially on finals week.

Too many consecutive answers have been a problem with multiple choice tests since their creation. Every time you fill in the same letter, your brain begins to think that the chances of the next one being that letter diminish exponentially.

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