Shot Came As Surpise to Some Seventh-Graders

Many 7th students thought that they were done with vaccines until they found out they were required to get another before entering school this year. For some, this came as a big surprise.

“It scared me at first, but I knew, in the end, it would help me,” said  Lily Grace Huddeltson A 7th grader. “I am glad I got it.”

Saluda Trail’s Nurse Bailey said the Tdap Vaccine helps protects students from serious diseases.

In the state of South Carolina, all 7th graders are required to have a Tdap vaccine. Saluda Trail Middle School Nurse Chante Bailey said this vaccine protects students against three very serious diseases – tetanus, diphtheria and acelluar pertussis (whooping cough).  

“The Tdap shot was new to me, so I did not know whether it would help me or not,” said Tavion Grissitte. “I  am glad I got it because even if I did not know what it was it could help me not be sick,” he said.

Babies and little kids get aDTaP shot to protect them from diphtheria, tetanus, adn pertussis (whooping cough), but it wears off when they get older which causes pre-teens and teenagers to be at risk. Because of this, many states including South Carolina and North Carolina require this booster shot. According to the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control, the requirement for the vaccine began during the 2013-14 school year. This is the 6th school year that the requirement has been in effect. All students in public and private schools must have this vaccine.

Nurse Bailey said there are currently 271 7th graders at Saluda Trail this school year.

Although Nurse Bailey said she hasn’t seen anyone with any of these diseases as of yet, she said “I think that everyone should get the vaccine. The vaccine protects you from getting P.W.T.” Nurse Bailey said students could get the vaccine from their family doctor or health department.  

“Most insurance pays for the vaccine,” she added. The cost of the vaccine could be $110 to $120 without insurance.

Nurse Bailey said the diseases that the vaccine protects from are very serious. They can cause everything from muscle spasms to infections. For example, Tetanus is a disease that causes a serious bacterial infection that causes painful muscle spasms and can lead to death. Diphtheria is a disease that is a serious infection of the nose and throat. Pertussis (Whooping Cough)  is a highly contagious respiratory tract infection. It can cause a bad cough that makes someone gasp for air after coughing fits.

Although some students find shots to be scary, the CDC and the American Academy of Family Physicians say the shot has been studied carefully and is safe.

One side effect from the shot can be soreness in the arm. However, health officials say the benefits outweigh the side effects.

There are, however, some side effects. Those are redness, soreness in the arm where the shot was given, headache, fever, or tiredness.

The benefits, health professionals say, outweigh the side effects. “All and all,  the Tdap vaccine is a very good vaccine and protects from very serious diseases,”  said Nurse Bailey.


STMS Students Family’s Business is a Nightmare

As child Eddie Cook enjoyed scaring the pants off of anyone and everyone.   

 “I love to see reactions, falling down from someone jumping out, etc. because as a child I liked to scare people so seeing the reactions is funny to me.” said Eddie Cook one of the owners of the 901 Nightmare.

The 901 Nightmare, is a haunted trail located 3520 Mount Holly Road in Edgemoor, SC. It was opened most weekends throughout October.

Cook has two daughters who attend Saluda Trail. Savannah, a 6th grader, and Jordan, an 8th grader. For them, this isn’t your usual family business.

Cook’s daughter, Savannah a 6th grader, also finds joy from seeing others terrified, crunching together, screaming and running for their lives. “Most of, the attendees seem to say fear the clowns,” the Cook girls said. “They also fear the chainsaw, even though there is no chain,” Savannah said.  

Savannah, who gets to dress up and scare folks going through the trail, said “It’s funny.” She has been through at least a hundred times, so it really doesn’t phase her.  On the other hand Jordan has only been through the entire trail once, and never went back. Jordan Cook, the oldest of the Cook girls doesn’t enjoy it as much. “I don’t like going because it’s scary,” said Jordan an 8th grader. “I don’t like scary things.”

Savannah enjoys spending a lot of her time at the trail when it’s open.

   “I’m there a lot,” Savannah said. “Every night unless my parents say not to.”  Savannah gets involved with most every part of the trail, from being inside and scaring people to helping in the lines.

Jordan said she’s only out there if she has to.

The 901 Trail was originally opened in 1998 then closed for a while until 2005 and re-opened for the 2005- 2006 seasons. The Cooks reopened it again in 2013.

The Cooks expect to keep it going.

“As long as we’re having fun and making a little bit of money, as long as possible,” said Mr. Cook.

If you haven’t had a chance to experience the trail. It’s not too late. The trail will be open on Halloween, Oct. 31st, from 7:30-10:30.

The Chainsaw always draws fear, according to the Cook Girls.

Giggles the clown brings about more screams than giggles, the Cook Girls say.



“ You have to take an advantage of you opportunity because it’s one in a lifetime.”

The Saluda Trail 7 and 8th-grade football teams had an almost perfect season this year, both sailing their way to a chance for a championship. The 7th-grade team was 7-0 when they took on Dutchman Creek, but suffered a loss which ended their season. “We worked hard to get where we were there is always next year.” – Aremdez Husky .

The 7-grade team was coached by Coach Dunham who said, “The team had great potential was very talented, and were dedicated young men who were willing to make the necessary changes to succeed.” Coach Dunham added, “They put in hard work 5 days a week and played the toughest teams in Rock Hill and York areas.” Coach Dunham stated there were several standout players on this year’s team: Demari Kendrick ( DK) , Kanye Nelson , AC Mcmoore, Jordan Miller , and Aremdez Husky.

Kendrick said he was excited about the numbers they put on the board.
“If we don’t score we don’t win “ – Demari Kendrick

Coach Dunham encouraged his team to take advantage of every opportunity. “ You have to take an advantage of your opportunity because it’s one in a lifetime,”  he said. The 8th-grade team also had an outstanding season. Their only 2 losses came from Dutchman Creek Middle School. The 8-grade team was coached by CJ Deino who said, “Our 8-grade team this year was very mature and had a passion for the game of football.” The 8-grade team has also played some of the toughest teams in the Rock Hill and york area such as Oakridge and Dutchman creek middle school.The team was lead by Isaiah Steele and Redden Smith who lead the defensive line. “We did well even though this is our last year we made the best of it. “ – Isaiah Steele

Twisted Strings

Saluda Trail Middle Schoolers have discovered new ways to lace up their shoes. It’s called shoe braiding. Students say it saves you time.

“At first I  didn’t like the idea of braiding shoelaces,” said Summer Martin, a 7th-grade student. “But then when I tried it, it became easier.” Martin added, “Because my bus comes early,  it’s easier to put on my shoes,so it saves me time.”

Martin, who said she learned how to braid her laces from a friend and the internet,  said, “Sometimes I like to change the color of my shoelaces to switch up the look.”

Jessica Perkins, another 7th-grade student  said, “I learned from the internet, but I didn’t understand it so I asked a  friend that already had their shoes braided and she taught me how to braid my shoes.” Perkins said that her favorite style was the fishtail braid. 

There are many different styles of braiding, including the french braid.

Katelyn Armacovitch said she first started braiding her shoes in 6th grade. She said learned from watching a youtube video. Armacovitch said she searched life hacks. The first hack was somebody braiding shoes. The hack, she said, was for when you’re in a rush and it takes time to tie your shoe, just braid it the night before so all you have to do is slip your foot in it. Armacovitch said she told herself, “I need to do this!” 

Armacovitch added, “Sometimes I like to change my color; I like to be different.”




New Addition Sparks Creativity

Makerspaces are popping up in schools across the country, and Saluda Trail Middle School has become the first middle school in our area to construct one.

Saluda Trail’s maker space was constructed this school year and students and staff are excited about the new environment. 

“We’re the only middle school that has one, ” said David Consalvi, Saluda Trail’s Steam Coach. “Oakdale is making one and South Pointe has one.”  “Becuase we’re STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art & Math)  schools, we’re focused on getting kids creative. Consalvi added, “We want their brains to be active.”

Saluda Trail’s New maker space has a lot of cool equipment.  There’s a 3D printer, laser and vinyl cutters and at tooling station.

If you haven’t check out our new maker space, you want to do so. The new space is now providing studens with an awesome opportunity to design, create, construct and problem-solve.


New Lunches! Yay or Nay?

Saluda Trail Wildcats returned to school in August to find changes in lunches. While the cafeteria staff says there’s more variety, this year, many students say they are unhappy with the changes.

Our new lunches in the cafeteria may seem like a small adjustment to many outside of the school, but could it be causing more issues like kids not focusing in class?  Many students have stopped eating and possibly stopped learning as well. Could it be that what some may consider a  small change in Saluda Trail’s students’ diet having a big effect on student’s learning?

On the first day of school, many students said were ready and excited to get their hands on a nice plate of nachos. While the students waited in the long line for nachos they noticed that these weren’t nachos at all, but instead saw corn dogs. Many students noticed that the bread had certainly changed on the corn dogs. It went from what considered “soggy and gross”  to “hard and healthy.”

A seventh grader, Tristina Hicks said, “On the first day of school I was really excited to go get my nachos, but when I got in the line I realized that it was corn dogs, and it was healthy and that’s ok but I didn’t like it because the bread didn’t taste good. Since then I have been bringing my own lunch from home.”

Many students like Tristina said they have stopped eating school lunch because of the “healthy” additions to the bread and meals. While the students are struggling to tell themselves to get a lunch meal the lunch staff has different opinions.

Susan Austin, the STMS lunch manager, said “The old lunch company was outsourced by the new company because the government runs what lunches we use and the lunch companies we use. They tell us how much salt to use and how much sugar. The lunch staff and I have no control over what is made.”

Most students just agree that we should change our lunches back to nachos but apparently, there is more to be known. The new lunch company is called SFE and is a professional culinary company and tells our school district what to make and eat. SFE stands for Southwest Food Excellence and was chosen by the government because it had healthier variety and options.

Some students don’t agree with the health changes.

Madison Rhodes, a student at STMS, said, “Healthy is when you actually eat. Last year everyone ate school lunch whether it was nachos, pizza, or a sandwich. Healthy to me is when after the long school hours we have you stop and eat but this year no one is stopping and eating. So this is isn’t healthier.”

Not only have the lunches changed but so have the lines. The lunch lines have changed to where every line has the same food. Some students are not happy with this change, while others are actually ok with it.

Tristina Hicks said, “Actually that is one of the perks of the new lunches because instead of having to wait in the long nacho line so we’re not rushing to get into a line.”

So what do you think? Are the new lunches yay or nay?

Are students being provided with enough opportunities to be creative in school

I think that students aren’t being provided with enough opportunities to be creative. 

Schools that have limits on sports players, club activities, and strict dress code or uniforms.

Things like art class, P.E, and other in school activities give students small chances to be creative but things like assignments and limits on what to do take those chances away.

Research shows that schools demand too much of children like when you’re doing a project in art class the give you a lost of directions to follow.

Teachers tell them what to do and how they do it.

Experts say creativity is innate, so it can’t really be lost. But it needs to be nurtured.

But Teachers at school encourage it but destroy it at the same time which leaves kids clueless on what exactly their supposed to do.

But some people would disagree because schools provide many opportunities like extra activities.

Though we do have these things some students don’t enjoy these activities because they’re not interested in the topic.

Each person has a different thing their interested and some kids don’t have an opportunity to express what they love at school as well as maybe at home.

Schools take these rights away when they add directions on an art project or an assignment the student feels strongly about limiting them to what they can talk about and keep their opinion to themselves.

Students have a right and their school takes that away but also encourages it for their students when their the ones probably limiting how much creativity they can use.

Each student has a right to be creative and I feel like school takes away that opportunity by having strict instructions on how to do a project or assignment.


The Buzz on Mr. Bey

The December Teacher’s Spotlight shines brightly on one of the new teachers at STMS, Mr. Bey.   Mr. Bey,  who teaches 6th-grade math,  started teaching at Saluda Trail in August and said he has enjoyed being here thus far.

“The students seem to be happier and willing to work harder here than my previous schools, said Mr. Bey. “There are a lot more elective classes that the students can choose from.”

Mr. Bey helps one of his 6th grade students with math. He is one of the newest Wildcat teachers.

Learn more about Mr. Bey below.

Q: What school did you teach at before you came to STMS?

A: “I taught at Lewisville Middle School for 13 years.’’

Q: What subject did you teach at your old school?

A:  I taught 8th-grade mathematics at Lewisville middle school.’’

Q: What are your favorite movie, foods, and music?

A: “My favorite movie is Lean on Me starring Morgan Freeman. My favorite food is pizza with olives and mushrooms.  I love 70s slow jams  – The O’jays, Otis Redding, and Earth Wind and Fire .’’

Q: Where did go to college”

A: “I did undergraduate at Center State University (OH) and Graduate school at Winthrop.”

Fun Facts About Mr. Bey:

  • Mr. Bey has a 9-month-old daughter.
  • He was an All city basketball player in Pittsburgh, PA  in 1996.
  • Mr. Bey is a big time Pittsburg Steeler Fan.
  • Mr. Bey likes to weight train and jog.
  • Mr. Bey is a big fan of the AMC hit series The Walking Dead.
  • Mr. Bey comes from a family of educators. “My mother, father, brother and sister are all current or retired teachers,” he said.

Did you know: Mr. Bey has an identical twin brother? “Being a twin is great,” he said. “It taught me how to share, and I had a companion to play sports with growing up.”

Should 6th Graders Be Allowed To Play Sports?

This school year 6th graders in North Carolina were given the opportunity to participate in all middle school athletics, except for football. Here, in SC, however, 6th graders still aren’t allowed to play sports. Wildcats have different opinions as to whether 6th graders should play.

Some Wildcats say 6th graders should be allowed to play, while others say they should wait it out.

Mr. Kirk Robinson, who coaches 7th-grade boys basketball, said 6th graders should be given an opportunity to play. “It lets students get an extra year of practice,” said Robinson. “My daughter played as a starter on basketball in 6th grade,” he said.

Coach Dunham,  who is also the STMS athletic director said, 6th graders should not be allowed to play. “This is the 6th graders first year here and they need to get adjusted to the schedule and changing classes, not sports,” said Dunham who coaches, football, basketball, and track.

Joshua Wilson, a 7th grader, also agreed that 6th graders should not be allowed to play sports.  “They need to learn about the school and not focused on sports,” Wilson said. “Next year you will know the school and you can play the sports. Most of the other schools don’t let their 6th grade play.”

Lexie Bolton a gymnast, Wildcat cheerleader, volleyball player, and track runner sided with Joshua Wilson and said,”I don’t think they should  be able to play sports because 6th graders should get used to middle school.”  Bolton said getting used to middle school was a struggle for her.

Josh Popov, a 6th grader, however, had a different opinion.  He said, “Yes, I would love that.” Nathaniel Barber, an STMS  football player, agreed with Popov. “Yes, 6th graders should play sports,” Barber said.  The now 7th-grader said when he was in 6th grade, he wished that he could have played football so he could get ready.

Coach Dunham said although 6th graders aren’t allowed to play middle school sports in South Carolina, there are still opportunities for them to play sports.  He said 6th graders can play on Gray-Y football or basketball leagues.

That’s what Corinthian Finch did. “I played Gray-Y football and AAU basketball in 6th grade,” said Finch who is now in the 7th grade. Finch who played football for the Wildcats said he would not have wanted to play middle school sports when he was in the 6th grade.He added that he had to focuses on his work in 6th grade

Mr. Hamm, the 6th-grade administrator, said he did not know that 6th graders were now allowed to play sports in North Carolina.  He said while he didn’t think South Carolina would allow 6th graders to play anytime soon, he said he would attend the games if it was allowed. “Yes, every single one of them,” he added.

Clown Sightings Seem To Have Ended

Wildcats are relieved that the creepy clown sightings have ended.

From August to the end of October there were numerous reports of clown sightings in the country, even in Rock Hill. Children and adults claimed to have spotted creepy clowns out and about.

The sightings brought about a lot of fears. Mrs. Madden, a 7-grade math teacher, did not like hearing about the clowns.  “I don’t like clowns, not a bit,” she said.  Mrs. Madden said she fears clowns “will come after her in her dreams.” Mrs. Madden thought people were trying to get attention and trying to scare people and had wished they would stop.

Officer Hammond, the STMS school resource officer, said he hasn’t heard of any sighting in months. “The last time I heard of one was back in October around Halloween,” Office Hammond said.

Although Ms. Tracy, A 7th-grade science teacher, said she isn’t scared of the clowns, she is also happy that the sightings have stopped.  Mrs. Tracy said at first she thought the clown sightings were real, but now she thinks people were just making it up.

Kimberly Vincent wasn’t worried about the clowns.  “They are ok,” she said. “I’m not scared of them.”


Jessica James wasn’t afraid of them either.  However, she was relieved the sighting have ended.  “I think that stuff is crazy,” James said. “Somethings I get concerned about people.”






Puff Balls Popping Up All Over The Trail

You can spot them on book bags. Some wear them on their jackets. Others attach them to their belt buckles or phone cases.  Even celebrities like Kylie Jenner, Kendall Jenner, and Khloe Kardashian are wearing them.

Puff ball key chains have become the latest craze at STMS. The puff ball key chains come in different sizes like small, medium, and large, as well as different shade of colors. And they’re not just for girls either. Boys have been wearing them too.

Taylor Walker, a 7th grader, has a hot pink and black puff ball key chains. Taylor said she spotted other students around STMS wearing them and decided to buy one for herself. Walker said she purchased hers from Rue 21 for 5 dollars. “I just think they are cute,” said Walker.

Ja’bri Agurs-Feaster, another 7th grader agreed.

“They are Soft, fluffy and cute,” said Agurs-Feaster who wears them on his belt and jacket. “The come in nice colors and they are very easy to wash.” Agurs-Feaster said he purchased most of his from Walmart and Rue 21.

While these have become a great accessory,  some teachers have found them to be a little distracting.

” I have never experienced them being a distraction (in class), said Mrs. Madden, a 7th-grade math teacher. ” I’ve  seen people in the hall hitting each other with them,” she said. “I do think they could be a distraction in class if students play with them and don’t get their work done.”

Ms. Ulmer, the 7th grade principal models a puff-ball key chain. Photo by Emma Hudspeth


Wildcats Preparing For The Sound of Music

The “hills are alive” at Saluda Trail with The Sound of Music as Wildcats are preparing for their 9th musical which will take place May 23rd and 24th at 7 p.m.

The Sound of Music is based on the true story of the Von Trapp Family Singers. It tells the story of a young lady named Maria Rainer who becomes a governess for the seven Von Trapp children. The story takes place is Austria.  Addison Creagh, a 7th grader, landed the role of Maria.

Students have been working hard on learning their parts and choreography. “The practices are going fantastic, and I learn more and more every time I go,” said Emma Gentry who plays Liesel the oldest daughter.  ”I am super excited for the performance and for everyone to see all the work we have put into this show!”  Gentry, a 7th grader, was in The Lion King last year.  She played the role of older Nala. “I was also the narrator in the show Snow White in 4th grade,” she said.

Rehearsals have been in full swing.

“The practices are going great,” said Emily Morrison, who is a part of the ensemble. “Everyone is pulling it together,” said Morrison, a 7th grader. “There are just a few things that need to be worked out.  I feel really good about being in this play because I love the story and movies.” Morrison  has been in Pirates, Thoughts, The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, The Wizard of Oz, Into the Woods Jr.  and  Seussical. 

Curtis Little, who landed the role of Franz in the upcoming musical, is also excited about this year’s performance.  Little, who is in the 7th grade, was also in last year’s musical, The Lion King Jr.  Little said he “likes the thrill of acting.”  He said he wasn’t surprised when he learned he landed the part.  “I knew I was going to get the part,” he said.

Cameron Long, who plays Herr Zeller,  said he “felt excited” when he learned he got the part. Long, a 7th-grader, said he tried out this year because he was also in The Lion King last year and had fun.  Long said he likes to act because “it’s so much fun.”

The talented STMS Cast of The Sound of Music includes:

Maria- Addison Creagh
Liesl- Emma Gentry
Louisa- QuMinlee Christensen
Brigitta- Reagan Peterson
Marta- Ashleigh Hinson
Gretl- Ella Nipe
Mother Abess- Sydney Thomas
Sister Berthe- Audrey Edmonds
Sister Margaretta- Carmela Thousand
Sister Sophia- Ashlyn Snipes
Frau Schmidt- Leah Reynolds
Girl in Pale Pink Coat- Kyia Jones
Mama- Brady Smith
Captain von Trapp- TJ Robertson
Friedrich- Dave Di Francesco
Kurt- TayShawn Hope
Rolf- Cooper Faulkenberry
Max- Michael Lindsay
Franz- Curtis Little
Herr Zeller- Cameron Long
Admiral Van Schrieber- Matthias Richardson
Baron Eberfeld- Devin Lindsay
Goatherd- Keoshi Page

The ensemble, which includes townspeople, party guests, German officials, trio, and Fraulein Schweiger, is made up of Sade Moore, Jada Howze, Serenity Williams, Emily Morrison, Daryn Questelle, Abby Mosley, Ana Geronimo, Nic Saulters, and Daniel Rios.


From Student Athlete To Coach

Several years ago C.J. Shannon spent hours training and suiting up for the Wildcats as a student athlete. This year, he was back again, but now as a coach.

Coach Byrd, who coached Shannon said he told him when he graduated from high school that he wanted to coach. Shannon’s dream came true. “He was a hard worker in the classroom and was a good athlete,” said Coach Byrd.” After his last high school year he told me he wanted to be a coach.”

Shannon was always passionate about sports.  At STMS the former athlete played football and basketball and also ran track. “Playing for STMS was great,” said Shannon. “In two years we lost three games.”  Shannon said students should cherish their time at STMS. “Have fun, you will miss it,” he added.“I enjoy seeing how I used to be in regards with attitudes and how difficult it was to deal with.”

Coach Shannon went on to play at South Pointe where he was on one of the school’s championship teams.  He also played for the York Comprehensive High School Cougars.

“I would love to play pro,” Shannon said. “As long as I pray and focus, stay dedicated I still have the chance to go pro.”

The new Wildcats that Shannon coached this year said he is a fun and productive coach.

Skyler Woodard, a 7th grade football player, who was recently coached by Shannon had great things to say about the young coach. “He’s a beast!” Woodard said.


Team 8-1 got a taste of the real world

On Friday November 11th, team 8-1 students got a taste of the real world. The teachers on this team held a Mock Interview Day for their students. The students were paired with professionals who gave them mock, one-on-one job interviews.

Mrs. White, the ELA teacher on the team, said this was the fourth year that her students had participated in the mock interviews.  It was a part of a unit that was based on language arts and math.

Mrs. White said this year was a major success. “Everyone was well dressed, practiced and very prepared,” said Mrs. White.  She said each student that participated got to create a resume which included their accomplishments and skills.

Another part of the unit included research. Mrs. White said the students got to research their dream job and see what it was like.  They also had to create a budget.

“I was really nervous,” said Eli Davis who was interviewed by Ms.Quannie Johnson for the position of environmental engineer. “I have never done anything like this.”

Mrs. White said several speakers were brought in. One of this year’s guest was a music manager who was former wildcat. Mrs. White said her first performance happen to be at an STMS talent show which inspired her to do what she does.


Students on Team 8-1 got a taste of real life when they participated in Mock Interview Day.


Artists gone wild

Do you love creating your own works of art?  Don’t mind trying new things? Well, I have the club for you!

Introducing Art Warriors.  Art Warriors is Saluda Trail’s art club that meets after school. The club’s advisor is Mrs. Copley. It is open to students in all three grades.

Now if you’re wondering “Do they do the same thing as Art Class? “ Well, your answer is no. In Art warriors, students get to explore a lot of different things that are not usually done in their  art classes like tie-dye. They do a little bit of everything like draw,  paint, and sketch.

“My favorite thing was inking in pictures with Plexiglas and Sculpting tools,” said Lawson Veale, a  7th grader.

“I joined because I like to draw,” said Cierra Rice, another 7th grader.

So when is Art Club you’re asking? It’s every other week on Thursdays after school. So if you still want to join you can. They’re always open to new artists. So if you’d like to join then go right ahead.

So if you like art and want to join a club then stop by at Mrs. Copley’s room on related arts hall after school for Art Warriors.

Chick-fil-a Yum Yum

There is a new addition to the lunch choices at STMS. Chick-fil-A sandwiches are now being sold every Thursday for $3.00 each in the canteen. According to STMS Principal Elissa Cox, about 600 sandwiches have been sold each Thursday since the sales began in September.

The sandwiches, which have been a hit with both students and staff, have Wildcats craving for more. The sales helps to raise money for the school, according to Principal Cox who came up with the idea for the sales.

“I like them” said Lacie Cease, a 7th grader. “They should sell them on Wednesday and Friday.”

Emani Brown, a 6th grader, agreed. “They are good,” said Brown. “They should sell them every day.”

Mrs. Pruett, 7th grade counselor said the Chick-fil-A sales has been a “positive change” for our students and faculty. “It brings excitement on Thursday,” Pruett said.

Mrs. Johnson, the 6th grade counselor agreed. “The students seem happier on Thursday,” Johnson said.

Although students are requesting more days, Principal Cox said Thursdays are the only sale days for now.

Chick-fil-A has been around since 1946 in Hapeville, Georgia and was founded by S. Truett Cathy.

Daryn Questelle is ready to enjoy her Chick-fil-A sandwich during lunch.

Daryn Questelle is ready to enjoy her Chick-fil-A sandwich during lunch.

Students & Staff Enjoyed Character Day

Thought you might have recently seen Captain America taking a stroll around Saluda Trail or Peter Pan flying around?  You were not dreaming.

Students and Staff were excited to take part in a recent character day where they had the opportunity to dress up as their favorite character.

“Mr. Robinson was the best costume I’ve seen all day,” said Koriyahna Douglas, a 7th grader.  Mr. Robinson came dressed as Captain America.

As students and staff walked down the halls it was like a magical wonderland because of all the wildcats dressed up in costumes such as Inspector Gadget, the mouse from If you give a Mouse a Cookie, the Cat from The Cat in The Hat, Thing 1 and Thing 2, Casper, and Batman. The staff members talked about how creative the students were with their costumes.

Student were especially happy because Saluda Trail hasn’t had a character day in years. Throughout the day students were overheard talking about which teachers and students stood out the most.

“Monster High is my favorite costume” said Yazmen Douglas, a 7th grader.

Saluda Trail’s staff members were also very creative. One of the most creative staff members was Mrs. Beck who oversees technology. Mrs. Beck came as Rapunzel.

Students and staff are looking forward to next Character Day.

Ms. Lengel, Macy Davis, Hannah Austin enjoyed dressing up as their favorite character.

Ms. Lengel, Macy Davis, Hannah Austin enjoyed dressing up as their favorite character.


New Grading Scale A Plus For Wildcats

Wildcats are excited about the new 10 point grading scale.

Wildcats are excited about the new 10 point grading scale.


Now that the first nine weeks has ended, Wildcats are able to see the effects of the new grading scale. Every student in a South Carolina school is now being graded on a ten points scale instead of seven and most seem to be excited about their changes as well as their grades.

The scale was approved last school year by the South Carolina Department of Education, who says, “It was made reviewing the impact for all students across the state.”

The old scale was 7 points, which is at a higher standard than most colleges. With the new scale, an A is now from 90%-100%, and a B is from 80%-89%. You can make a C scoring as low as a 70% to a 79%. To score a D, just make a 60%- 69% and an F make a 0%-59%.

Many students believe the scale has allowed them to make better grades. Jakhari Webb, a 7th grader, said when he heard we were getting a new grading scale, he thought, “It’s easier now to make A’s and B’s,” and he got, “excited.”

Mr. Kostecki, a 7th grade teacher, said the new grading scale “simplifies things for the students.” He believes that it makes things easier for the students. He says that although the students have the new scale, he is not going to grade them any harder than years past.

Roggie Hinson, an eighth grader, believes that the new scale is, “less stressful,” since we now have, “three extra points.” However, he believes that being graded at higher standard than colleges “would’ve pushed us to be better.”

The state of South Carolina is catching up to the other states, when it comes grading scales. Neighboring states such as Georgia and North Carolina had already begun using the 10 point scale.  Ms. Johnson, the guidance counselor for sixth grade, thought it was a “wonderful decision.” She believes that, “We are getting there, once we pinpoint a better system for assessments, it will make the kids excited when they’re making better strives.”  Ms. Johnson added that she is expecting more students’ names on the honor roll boards, and getting wildcat cards, and that it will, “boost their self-esteem.”

Mr. Kostecki, a 7th grade teacher, said the new grading scale “simplifies things for the students.”

Mr. Kostecki, a 7th grade teacher, said the new grading scale “simplifies things for the students.”



Record breaking pacer


Ava Robitaille, a 12 year old 7th grader, recently broke the school record for the Pacer Test, when she received a score of 81.

Ava Robitaille, a 12 year old 7th grader, recently broke the school record for the Pacer Test, when she received a score of 81.


While  all the other kid’s were recently gasping for a breath in P.E. ,Ava Robitaille, a 12 year old 7th grader,was still pushing through the Pacer Test, trying to break the school record. Robitaille, reached her goal, making the new girls’ record 81 on Oct. 17th.

The Pacer Test stands for Progressive Aerobic Cardiovascular Endurance Run. It is where “Students run back and forth as many times as they can between two marker,” according to the  fitness gram instructions.  The test helps tell how good or bad a student is at aerobic fitness. It was made by the Cooper Institute and in partnership with the National Football League’s Play 60 Movement.

“It feels good to say I broke the pacer record since I get my name on a plaque,” Robitaille said. Her previous Pacer record was 75.

Robitaiile’s scores exceeds the high range for 12 year old girls. The Health Norm Rages for the Pacer for Girls 12 years old is 15 for a low and 41 for a high.

Robitaille attributes her scores to being an active youth. She  plays soccer and basketball for extracurricular sports, and she has been running for four years. “It does help to have some experience because you learn a technique,” she said.

Gabriel Popov, another 7th grader, has taken the pacer before and said he thinks that the pacer is challenging because it makes you go faster every time. Popov, who also plays soccer, received a score of 50.

Coach Keaton,  an STMS P.E. teacher, also didn’t score as well as Robitalle. She said she took the pacer when she was 51 and her record was just 38-40.




Pencil Machines Could Give Students the “Write” Tools

Pencil Machines could provide STMS students with the "Write" Tools

Pencil Machines could provide STMS students with the “Write” Tools

You ask your friend or teacher for a pencil, usually you get the same answers, “No,” “Only got one,” “One for me.” Now you’re in class without a pencil and unable to do your work. What if you had a pencil machine in school for only $00.25 to a $1.00?  Wouldn’t that be a more convenient way of getting one then always asking someone for a pencil?

Currently students wanting to purchase pencils must do so at the school store. Saluda Trail’s school store is located in the media center.  It is open before school and during lunch.  Prices range is from $0.10 to $5.00.  Students can purchase the usual school supplies like pencils, paper, notebooks, and even things for Science Fair like the science fair boards. “Any school supplies, we have it,” said Ms. Hood, Saluda Trail’s Media Specialist.

The store however, is not open when the media center is closed. This sometimes presents a problem for students who are in need of supplies. Students who attended Oakdale Elementary School had access to a pencil machine and say they liked being able to purchase pencils throughout the school day.

Jarod Feaster, a former Oakdale student, liked the pencil machine. “They had different pencils,” Feaster said. “It was cheap, only a quarter.” Dasani Jackson agreed. “It was cheap and they had different designs,” said Jackson. Students said the pencils in the machine had festive colors and cool designs.

Some students , however, said there were problems with the machines.

Jordan Mahoney, former Oakdale student, says “It stole my money and I really hated it because it was broken down and I could’ve used that money for ice cream.”

Chasidy Cureton, another former Oakdale student, said “I didn’t like it at first because it took my money.”

Mrs. Campbell, Saluda Trail principal, said she hasn’t heard of any requests for pencil machines. “I haven’t seen that as a need,” said Mrs. Campbell. “I’ve never heard of someone in need of a pencil, since we sell pencils in the media center.”

Some students and teachers, however think that pencil machines could benefit students. “I think a pencil machine is a great idea,” said Ms. Lengel, 7th grade science teacher. “Students often find themselves without a pencil and a pencil machine would give them a way to solve that problem,” Lengel added.  A pencil  machine could be a game changer.

Those who like the idea of having a pencil machine said if Saluda Trail decides to purchase one, hopefully it will give students the “write” tools.

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