The student news site of Wayland High School

Wayland Student Press

The student news site of Wayland High School

Wayland Student Press

The student news site of Wayland High School

Wayland Student Press

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ICYMI: June 10 - The Class of 2024s graduation, volleyball state championship and Junes Fashionista of the Month
ICYMI: June 10 - The Class of 2024's graduation, volleyball state championship and June's Fashionista of the Month
June 17, 2024
Stay Informed with WSPN With Our Newsletter

2022-2023 Year in Review

Credit: Aimee Smith
WSPN’s Aimee Smith and Katya Luzarraga summarize the 2022-2023 school year.

The 2022-2023 school year brought with it many highs and lows for Wayland High School, and WSPN was there to report on it. The COVID-19 pandemic was declared over by the Biden Administration on May 11, making this school year the first year since 2019 that classes weren’t held during a pandemic. While this allowed the school to transition back to a more normal learning environment, it also brought new changes to WHS. Highlighted below are articles, videos, galleries, infographics and podcasts that WSPN has produced this year.

During the summer, members from SADD visited California and students participated in innovation camp. To kick off the school year, the WHS debate team traveled to Yale University and cross country athletes competed at the Frank Kelley Invitational.

Coach Lisa McNamara became the new coach of the girls varsity soccer team, students participated in football game psychs and the boys varsity soccer team played in their annual Kicks for Cancer game.

WSPN’s Kris Poole-Evans highlighted Sarah Foley’s artwork, while “Don’t Worry Darling” received a rocky review at the Venice Film Festival. The Class of 1970 returned to their alma mater and the Class of 2025 held their semi-formal at Wedgewood Pines Country Club.

WSPN’s Reva Datar wrote a letter to her younger sister on the fate of school shootings in America and students discussed their stress levels at the beginning of the year. This school year, WHS administration implemented a new cell phone policy and gave out warnings to student drivers about parking passes.

WHS held the PSAT exam and Superintendent Omar Easy implemented a new test return policy, spiking mixed feelings among students, faculty and residents of Wayland. After much debate, the WHS administration decided not to hold Powderpuff as a school-sanctioned event because of liability concerns.

Additionally, Pam’s Run returned in-person, WSPN’s Genevieve Morrison commented on the lack of period products at WHS and the a capella season officially began. To end the month, the senior class dressed up for Halloween 2022.

The WHS varsity golf team secured a win against Cambridge-Rindge Latin, cross country competed at the Twilight Invitational, the boys varsity football team played Newton-South during senior night and the girls varsity soccer team tied with Weston during senior night.

WSPN looked deeper into the history of powederpuff at WHS after administration decided to cancel the senior class event going forward. Class of 2022 graduate Sammy Johnson committed to D1 rowing and students shared their Thanksgiving traditions.

The podcast Asians on Air got revamped, teachers discussed their opinions on spirit week and Staff Reporter Chloe Zilembo discussed the controversy surrounding the Boston Bruins. Former WSPN Editor-in-Chief Charlie Moore wrote a heartfelt tribute to the publication.

WSPN gave readers an insight into the best gifts for the holiday season. Gina Wang helped middle schoolers gain confidence through debate and WSPN’s Talia Macchi challenged the necessity of daylight savings time.

After much controversy, the senior class held their annual powderpuff game as a non-school-sponsored event. WHS got rid of plastic water bottles following petitions by the WHS Green Team, and WSPN spotlighted senior Molly Morneweck who starred in a movie this summer. Meanwhile, Ticketmaster crashed amidst the Taylor Swift concert ticket presale.

As the weather got colder, WSPN highlighted local coffee hotspots and Yo Boca Taco. Wayland hosted a myriad of holiday events, the language wing did a gift drive, WHS choral groups performed their winter concert and a cappella wowed during their spirit week concert.

In sports, IBL held its first game of the season, fall all-star athletes were crowned and winter sports officially began.

Racist graffiti targeted towards Superintendent Easy was found on the side of the Wayland Community Pool, former WHS science teacher Kristin Cowell resigned and Science Department Head John Berry spoke to the School Committee regarding Cowell’s resignation.

In response to the racist graffiti, Wayland community members came together to rally against racism.

January marked the return from winter break and travel plans, as well as the start of midtermsStaff Reporters Ryan Chase, Chloe Zilembo and Jenny Shine gave their three takes on midterms, while teachers offered their advice on how to prepare for and manage midterms

The wrestling team traveled to Beverly to compete in a quad meet and girls basketball won against Concord-Carlisle. Nadal lost in the Australian Open and the NHL Winter Classic took place at Fenway Park.

WHS predicted the 2022 Grammy winners and WSPN’s Genevieve Morrison and Charlotte Thirman reflected on the top 10 movies of 2022. The Wayland Mini Market received its well-earned recognition and WSPN’s Nadya Chase and Aimee Smith compared their “Kaleidoscope” viewing experiences.

Winter Week came back with more activities than last year. During school hours, students attended the lox box challenge and the hypnotist show. Green team brought back its slow fashion show and Honors Dramatic Arts students brought their 10-minute plays to the lecture hall.

In the auditorium, there was an Anonymous-Ask panel to give students the opportunity to learn about sex and gender and a Winter Week performance from Window Dance Ensemble. Additionally, Wayland’s musical groups brought sound to the auditorium during Winter Week through performances from groups like the Honors Sinfonia Orchestra and Tri-M Honors Society.

The a cappella groups had a busy month preparing for Winter Week and later performing onstage with college a cappella groups from Tufts, Northeastern and Brandeis.

After being placed on indefinite leave by the School Committee, superintendent Dr. Omar Easy charged Wayland and the School Committee with an MCAD (Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination) discrimination complaint. WSPN’s Genevive Morrison wrote a piece explaining what an MCAD complaint is and what the process of submitting one looks like.

When the pipes burst at Loker, elementary students visited the High School for an impromptu field day.

The Wayland community celebrated the life of the late Loker School teacher Mike O’Conner and the 175th birthday of the Wayland Public Library.

The Wayland School Committee decided the WPS FY24 budget and held a meeting about superintendent Omar Easy’s discrimination complaint and filling other open leadership positions. In April, the School Committee hired current Concord Middle School Assistant Principal Tyler Steffey to be the interim principal at Wayland Middle School during the 2023-2024 school year.

The WHS girls swim team ended its season undefeated, with a record of 14-0. WSPN’s Jenny Shine wrote an opinion about the difficulties of being a winter athlete.

WHS began the course selection process for the 2023-2024 school year. WSPN’s Chloe Zilembo, Jenny Shine and Ryan Chase wrote a three takes opinion about the course selection process from their perspectives as students from different grades.

The Green Team hosted Wayland High School’s first Earth week with special events such as a lecture by Wayland resident Kaat Vander Straeten on the importance of composting.

Wayland’s School Committee hired David Fleishman to be Wayland Public Schools’ interim superintendent. Later in the month, Wayland residents elected Erin Mueller and Christina Rodrigo to be the new members of the School Committee.

WSPN’s Reva Datar and Penelope Biddle interviewed three students with family in Russia and Ukraine to get their perspectives on the war one year later.

During April Break, some WHS students went on trips for their classes. For the first time since 2018, some students from WHS’ French and Latin classes went to France and Italy respectively to learn about the language and culture of the countries.

Some WSPN members went to San Francisco for the Spring JEA/NSPA Conference. In San Francisco, WSPN won several awards including their fourth consecutive Pacemaker Award, the First Amendment Press Freedom Award and 2nd place in the Best of Show Award for online news in high school enrollment under 1,800 students. While there, WSPN produced infographics, a video, a gallery and an article about Union Square.

This year, there were two proms instead of just the typical junior prom because the Class of 2023 delayed its prom until senior year due to COVID-19. The senior prom took place the weekend before the junior prom.

Some WPS students attended “the Eras tour” in Foxborough, Massachusetts. WSPN’s Mischa Lee, Jane Tardif and Melina Barris wrote an article with outfit inspiration for Taylor Swift’s concerts. After the concerts, WSPN’s Jenny Shine, Hallie Luo and Selena Liu wrote a concert review on their experiences at “the Eras tour” concert.

The Class of 2023 held its game of Senior Assassin throughout May while SADD ran its annual Safe Driving Week at WHS. Window Dance Ensemble performed its spring show, “it’s time to dance,” on Memorial Day.

The WHS math team won the states and New England medium schools division competitions. During contract negotiations with the School Committee, members of the Wayland Teachers Association stood outside of WHS to advocate for fair contracts. The School Committee also announced that current Wayland Middle School principal Betsy Gavron would be the interim assistant superintendent for the 2023-2024 school year.

WHS Honors Spanish Four classes took a field trip to the Spanish immersion program at Loker School to spend time with the elementary students. The junior class took a break from classes to attend WHS’ annual Career Day. The Honors Classical Literature class performed a modern version of “the Bacchae” by Euripedes in the Lecture Hall. WSPN’s Jane Tardif wrote an article with seven tips to help prepare for finals.

Graduation for the Class of 2023 got postponed due to the rain, but happened the following day outside on the turf.

The boys baseball team won their game against Concord Carlisle 7-4. The WHS track and field team sent three athletes to the MIAA Meet of Champions. WSPN’s Chloe Zilembo shared some local community service opportunities to do over the summer.

Letter to the reader:
Dear reader,

If you’ve made it this far through the “Year in Review,” we commend you for reading through all the moments that we’ve covered throughout the year. At times, we didn’t know where this year would take us, but we put everything we had into what we produced and we think it paid off. The same can be said about you, loyal reader. You persevered through the challenges that this year threw at you and made it out the other side. Readers like you are why we write challenging stories and capture beautiful moments in our community. Although you might already be thinking about next school year, please take a moment to revel in your successes and be present in the moment. Enjoy the summer sun, and we will see you next year.

We wish you all the best,

WSPN Staff

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About the Contributors
Katya Luzarraga
Katya Luzarraga, Staff Managing Editor
Katya Luzarraga, Class of 2024, is a third year reporter and staff managing editor for WSPN. She plays for the girls varsity tennis team and is a member of Student Advocacy Committee club. She is also a peer mentor at WHS and head of WSPN club. Outside of school, she loves to take walks with her dog, discover new books and spend time with friends. Contact: [email protected]
Aimee Smith
Aimee Smith, Business Managing Editor
Aimee Smith, Class of 2024, is a third year reporter and the Business Managing Editor for WSPN. In her free time, she enjoys reading, baking and spending time with friends. Contact: [email protected]
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