Editor in Chief
“Pride in our Past. Confidence in our Future.” These words stick out front and center as one walks into the main entrance of Jamesville-DeWitt High School. So how about the present? From strong athletics, to new technology, to renovations and recovering from last year’s water fountain flood fiasco, J-DHS is primed for a great year. Principal Paul Gaspirini confirmed that in his update on the state of the school.
J-D athletics is coming off of a year in which it boasted the strongest athletic programs in Section III, and seventh strongest in the state of New York. “We have great kids. Bottom line,” said Mr. Gaspirini; “we have great students, great teachers, and great coaches who really make it all work together.” The Red Rams finished the 2015-2016 academic year with Section III Championships in nine sports, New York State Public High School Athletic Association State Championship appearances in girls soccer, girls basketball, and boys lacrosse. The Red Rams as the runner-up in girls soccer, and state champions in girls basketball and boys lacrosse.
Not only is J-DHS strong on the field, court, or any other competitive surface, but also in the classroom. This year, J-DHS looks to improve its academic performance with the addition of new technology. Each department has received a set of Google Chrome Book laptops for their use in the classroom. “A few years ago, we had a Student Government that was very interested in technology,” said Mr. Gaspirini, “We listened to the students at that time, and thought it was important to go to new technology to make our classrooms more 21st-Century.” In addition, the new Chrome Books will add to the use of Google Classroom that has become very popular. Google Classroom allows teachers to post assignments, make announcements, and post notes and class activities for students to access from home, study halls, and even on their phones. Students can turn in assignments via classroom, see notes, and post study tools or announcements for their classmates to see.
J-DHS has also seen some major renovations in the new sections of the Red and Blue hallways. Last year, a water fountain at the end of the Red hallway started to flood, destroying the floor and some rooms in part of the Red hallway, as well as the ceiling and multiple classrooms in the Blue hallway. Repairs to the damage began last spring, and finished up over the summer. “We are very pleased with the work everyone did. It looks much better there,” said Mr. Gaspirini. He also added that the school worked closely with the insurance company to replace damaged items in each room, and even upgrade to newer items in some of the classrooms hit hardest.
Getting the school to function isn’t just an administrative job, so at J-DHS, the student body votes each year on a Slate of students to work closely with the administration to improve the school. Recently, J-DHS has seen great continuity in the students elected to the Slate. Seniors Jake Risavi and Olivia Behan, now co-Presidents, have been on the school Slate since they were eligible to be elected at the start of their sophomore year. Mr. Gaspirni says that while he tries to get to know all of the students at J-DHS and work with them all, it certainly helps to have students who know how everything runs, and can keep the school trending upward as far as the overall experience for anyone at Jamesville-DeWitt High School.
With all the new additions and pride in our past, it’s time to step into the now and build reasons to have confidence in our future at Jamesville-DeWitt High School. “We’re going to have a great year here. I’m really excited, and proud to be a Red Ram,” concluded Mr. Gaspirini.