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Malden High School's Official Newspaper

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    Left to right: Junior Manel Soltani, junior Phuong Nguyen, sophomore Rachael Eaglin, senior Deborah Kibazo, and senior Gillian Willcox after their meet against Somerville. Photo by Abhishek Rana. Junior Adela Dzaferagic running in the meet against Somerville. Photo by Abhishek Rana. Left to right: Junior Manel Soltani, senior Deborah Kibazo, junior Phuong Nguyen, and senior Gillian Willcox running side by side in the meet against Somerville. Photo by Abhishek Rana. Sophomore Jasmine Gray running in the meet against Somerville. Photo by Abhishek Rana. The girls cross country team staring out their meet against Somerville. Photo by Abhishek Rana. The girls cross country team  at the starting line in their meet against Somerville. Photo by Jesaias Benitez. Sophomore and Blue and Gold member Anna Powers running during the meet against Somerville. Photo by Jesaias Benitez. The girls cross country team in a huddle before their meet against Somerville. Photo by Abhishek Rana.

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    The city of Kunduz in Afghanistan was one target of a U.S. airstrike based on it succumbing to Taliban control. The airstrike had been requested by Afghan troops under fire, but the alleged reason had been to protect  U.S. ground forces as Pentagon officials had initially expressed (Lawrence).

    Days after the airstrike commenced, a hospital run by the aid group Doctors Without Borders in Kunduz fell victim to the strike. Staff members and patients alike were killed and injured, amounting to a known 22 deaths and another 37 wounded in the crossfire (Botelho, Joseph, Mullen).

    This tragedy was deemed “collateral damage”  by the U.S. military, an unintentional incident that wounded and cost innocent people their lives. The U.S. general regarded the attack as a “mistake,” (Lawrence) making the lives lost seem inconsequential to the bigger task at hand of liberating Kunduz along with other cities of Taliban rule.

    President Obama has apologized to Doctors Without Borders as well as the president of Afghanistan and promised a full investigation but the aid group has qualified the incident as an ‘attack on the Geneva Conventions,’ (Botelho, Joseph, Mullen) the convention concerning treaties “on the treatment of civilians, prisoners of war and soldiers who are otherwise rendered hors de combat, or incapable of fighting” (“Geneva Conventions”). Obama assured that the Department of Defense ‘would provide a transparent, thorough and objective accounting of the facts and circumstances of the incident’ but  the organization is “urging an independent investigation by a never-before-used international commission –[The International Humanitarian Fact-Finding Commission]” (Botelho, Joseph, Mullen).  

    A possible cause to the attack may be due to the type of aircraft used, an AC-130 gunship, wherein it relies on a “compass heading” and “visual targeting” rather than  “a map coordinate to engage its target” as jets use (Gibbons-Neff). Doctors Without Borders claimed it had supplied its map coordinates to rule out as to why the hospital was targeted.

    A U.S. close-air support pilot explained that the craft “specifically has to be guided onto the target by a force on the ground and will fire only after identifying friendly and enemy forces.” The aircraft only operates in the dark with a “crew of roughly a dozen [using] a number of infrared sensors and night vision devices to see and engage targets on the ground” (Gibbons-Neff). Such factors could have contributed to the tragedy but further investigations will proceed in hopes of identifying the cause of the attack on the hospital. But determining the cause cannot be the only measure to be taken. The effectivity of both the airstrike and the ability of “limited U.S. force in Afghanistan [to] work with Afghan troops,” (Gibbons-Neff) leading the government to reconsider the number of U.S. troops to keep in Afghanistan all must be addressed.   


    To read more about the controversial airstrike, visit npr.org, washingtonpost.com, or cnn.com where the facts in this article were acquired from.

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  • 10/08/15--12:21: Harvest Moon Festival
  • Fellsmere Pond Park is a popular place to walk or relax, but on Sep. 19, 2015 the park hosted the Harvest Moon Festival . The festival included a live concert, bouncy house, food trucks, stands from other work place like the”Monkey King Tea.” people with their own business to share their plans or spread the word about their own event like volunteering.

    The festival usually takes place from 11am to 4pm. Malden High School Interact club, MHS principal Dana Brown, and many others attended the Harvest Moon Festival to help the people to set up and participant like face painting and pumpkin patch making for children.

    As you walk around the Fellsmere park during the Harvest Moon Festival, there are always children jumping on the bouncy house, people buying food like fried dough and ice cream from various restaurants or caterers in Malden, and enjoying pony rides. Every Harvest Moon Festival has a new atmosphere each year: different people, food, events, and performers.

    The Harvest Moon festival this year was the 11th annual event. The festival had started in 2004 by the Oak Grove Improvement Association (OGIA), who have been serving the community since 1897. The festival’s  purpose is to raise the volunteering and fundraiser for cretia and for public groups like the Zolda Club, which is a group of students from Malden High School.

    The Harvest Moon festival is an annual event in Malden, and were many people at the festival; some of them recently discovered it. Dana Brown the principal of Malden High School has Harvest Moon Festival for a long time. “I love the festival because it brings family together, brings out a lot communties and a lot good informational tables, communities partners, the music over there is always good, the dances are good, food is good. I think it’s just a great day for people to go.”

    At the event, Brown walked around to engage in conversations with the people at the Harvest Moon Festival. Brown stated that, “More groups should get involved,” and he thinks it is, “a really great event. It’s good to give back to the community, to volunteer, and to have a great time.” Brown also feels that it is good for the community to come together at events like the Harvest Moon Festival.

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    The Malden boys cross country team during their meet against Somerville. Photo by Abhishek Rana.

    The Malden boys cross country team during their meet against Somerville. Photo by Abhishek Rana.

    The Malden High School boys cross country has had victories, made memories as well as lasting friendships. Last year’s team achieved plenty, having not only won the Greater Boston League championship but also, as Coach David Londino puts it, “breaking the drought” by winning half of all their meets.

    Although last season was successful, all the current members of the team agree that there is room for improvement. Senior Steven Ao believes that with hard work and effort, improving from last season is definitely a possibility, explaining that “[their] team’s top runners are all around each other’s range in running ability,” meaning that they could push each other on more easily to progress in the GBL and improve individually as well. Ao confessed, “This was not the case during last year’s season of cross country, where there was more of a gap in running ability between the guys.” Ao concluded that that the team is “more well-rounded and it helps that there are a lot less injuries, compared to last year.”

    When asked what helps the team to work so well together, senior James Ao replied, “The most important thing that helps [them] is that [they] are very competitive, even with each other, and they do not like anyone getting too far away from [them].” As a result, this helps to improve the strength of the team overall.

    This season the MHS boys cross country team hopes to decrease their average running times, but their primary goal for this and every season is to bring home yet another GBL title. Sophomore Temesgen Tsige commented that being a GBL champion in a prior year makes “it [even more] important that the team continues to work hard and put all of its effort to keep the title that [they have] all been working so hard for.”

    Freshman Jeffrey Song running in the meet against Somerville. Photo by Abhishek Rana.

    Freshman Jeffrey Song running in the meet against Somerville. Photo by Abhishek Rana.

    As with anything, it is impossible to reach a goal without motivation, drive, and most importantly, support. When it comes to cross country it is impossible for an individual to reach a goal without his teammates. Going to the practices everyday allows the runners to realize the importance of a strong relationship between teammates is for the sport. The team encourages and pushes one another to work harder, improve and stay on task, all the while running towards a common goal; winning.  

    As a testament to teamwork, when asked what drives him to work hard and improve as a runner, Steven Ao explained that “[his] teammates [are what] drives [him] to work hard as a runner.” He added, “Not one single person on the team can win a race by themselves, due to [their] teammates being so important to help win the meets.” The team encourages Ao, making him unable to “let [his] team down and try as best as possible to secure the placements [they] need.

    MHS cannot wait for what the boys cross country team makes of their season this fall.

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    The annual Blue and Gold Art Gallery is a tradition of Malden where student artwork is showcased for the public at Commerce Place on 350 Main Street. The Summer Show was an exhibit that ran from August 3rd to October 7th, organized by the Fine Arts Department at Malden High School. This summer marked its first year, but the Blue and Gold Art Galley occurs at the same location every year in April.

    Out of approximately 1000 student works to choose from,  and about 300 selections from the 2014-2015 year were displayed and for sale. The show features artwork entirely from Studio students of MHS from all grades and levels. The Blue and Gold Gallery has consistently attracted new Studio members for the reward of exhibiting creations and commonly felt among the students, as stated by Mary Ann Seager, who has been teaching art at MHS for 20 years.

    As a teacher, Seager enjoys learning something new from her students through the variability of ideas in each individual’s art, which is demonstrated in the works at the gallery. The artistic skill and ability of the pupils is unquestionable, but their individual perspective on art is the most exciting and impressive aspect of the gallery.

    Art on display at the annual Blue and Gold art sale. Photo by Gabriella Onessimo.

    Art on display at the annual Blue and Gold art sale. Photo by Gabriella Onessimo.

    The process of developing the show is a large effort made possible by its supporters. Orchestrating the overall event engages many helpers such as workers from the Mayor’s Youth Employment Program who assisted in assembling the artwork to major contributors like MHS principal Dana Brown who allow the art showing to take place. The moment when the gallery becomes public is an exciting feat for everyone involved. Seager describes the opening as, “having a party and hoping somebody will come!”

    Artists and staff dress formally and anticipate visitors who soon file in to enjoy the showcase, a particularly special moment for art teacher Julie Mullane who expressed, “[They are] so impressed with it and we look at it everyday but getting it out in the public takes on a professional look,” says Mullane. Both Mullane and Seager agree that the sharing of the students’ work and self-expression in a polished setting is a significant payoff.

    The availability of wonderful art for the whole Malden community is something valued by all participants and illustrates the importance of prioritizing the arts. The art sale helps fund Malden High School’s Fine Arts Department, enabling the program to continue and thrive. Its wide support from faculty and students demonstrates the strong involvement of the arts at MHS and promotes how crucial the option of art is in education.

    On the subject of art’s essentiality, Seager states, “Art is very important to the education of a well rounded person and it helps with divergent and creative thinking. Art develops your idea of deductive reasoning, creative thought. It’s important to showcase that Malden High School has a strong commitment to creative thinkers.”

    Art on display at the annual Blue and Gold gallery. Photo by Gabriella Onessimo.

    Art on display at the annual Blue and Gold gallery. Photo by Gabriella Onessimo.

    Whether making or appreciating it, art deserves a communal presence in a school as it develops productivity and creativity in students who can achieve great merit with artistic expression. As art teacher at MHS, Joseph Luongo expresses, “Art is very important. It’s not a matter of just making pretty pictures. They help students as far as critical thinking and creativity. When you look for jobs in the future what people are looking for is people who have innovative solutions to problems and that is what art helps develop.”

    The next Blue and Gold Art Sale will begin the week before April vacation at Commerce Place on 350 Main Street.

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  • 10/13/15--11:40: Nedlam’s Corner
  • Dear Nedlam,

    Even though school has just started, college doesn’t feel that far away. Besides the fact that I’m totally freaking out about what I need to do in school to get into a good college, are there things I should be doing outside of school?


    College Crazy,


    Dear College Crazy,


    First of all, relax and take a deep breath! Even though the college process can seem overwhelming it’s important to take your time and think about the steps you want to take and the things you need to do to get where you want to go. A lot of college applicants believe that colleges are looking for a particular kind of person, someone who gets straight A’s, does tons of volunteer work, is in the National Honors Society, you get the idea. But that’s not true. While colleges do value good grades, they aren’t looking for another stereotypical “smart kid.” They want to see what you care about, the things that make you uniquely you. Don’t focus on what colleges want to see, focus on who you are and give your all to the things you care about. If you love music, show admissions officers that you are committed and are part of things like the band, choir, or music theory, and stick to it for a few years to show you can commit yourself to something and give 100%. If you love sports, play on a team, but also practice on off seasons to improve, and maybe bump up to varsity, show that you love what you’re doing enough to work hard and get better at it. Volunteering, even in small ways, is a great way to display that you care about things outside of yourself and want to make positive contributions to the world. The key, I think, to know what to do outside of school, and how many things to do is to take a look at yourself and at how much  is going on in your life. If you are really interested in soccer, but have been doing gymnastics for three years, which would you personally regret more, having never tried soccer or having given up gymnastics? Of course for some people there is enough time to do both, but pay attention to your health and grades, because although colleges want to see that you have a variety of interests, they don’t want to see that you are doing too much at the expense of your grades and/or health.  If you are already feeling overwhelmed, or you still feel like you need a second opinion talk to you guidance counselor about what’s going on. He might also be able to help you find colleges that meet your interests instead of trying to measure up to another college’s values that are too overwhelming or dissatisfying for you. Remember, don’t stress too much about this stuff, because no matter what you should care about your emotional and physical health above all. After all, does where you’re going college matter more than what you are going to do after college with the education you’ve received? Hope this helps!


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    A controversial topic in modern day government, recreational marijuana has been legal in Colorado starting in 2012. There, the medical use of marijuana has been legal since 2001. In the past three years, you have probably heard something on the matter, considering it is not recent news.

    It has been popular for decades. Woodstock, although a music festival, was fueled by weed back in 1969. American society’s fascination with marijuana has gone back and forth between sides, the debate switching between whether or not the substance is acceptable both socially and legally. There are still those who oppose this law and everything that falls under it, however there is no ignoring the fact that Colorado has had positive changes in its time since legalization.

    Movies revolving around teenage stoners and those like “Half-baked” have fueled the fire that keeps the controversy hot. Even scenes in popular, non-based television shows have included references to the recreational drug, “How I Met Your Mother,” among them. Other shows have based their entire plots around the distribution of marijuana, including the series “Weeds.”

    Cultural effects not only extend to television and the big-screen but also events and activities in Colorado related to marijuana aspects. Events such as “Sushi and Joint Rolling” is just one of the many events hosted in Colorado. We are accustomed to fairs and festivals with amusement park rides and carnival games but Colorado has marijuana and hemp festivals, with awards and marijuana-infused snacks.

    As popular as seen on TV and executed in fairs and festivals, marijuana remains to be recreationally and medically illegal in the majority of the United States. States including Colorado, Oregon, Washington state, and Alaska are the few with laws permitting recreational marijuana usage to anyone within state limits. Massachusetts, California, and New York are among states where the medical use of marijuana is legal, while states like Tennessee and Texas are two of many with the only law regarding marijuana is the one where it is illegal in all forms.

    In Colorado, especially, the weed business is booming. The first year alone, 148,000 pounds of cannabis flowers were sold. Later the Marijuana Enforcement Division said 700 million dollars worth of medical and recreational marijuana was sold. 386 million of that was made from medical marijuana, while 313 million was made from the recreational use. Included in the sales were 50 million pot-edibles, such as THC-infused candy and drinks.

    Sellers and growers are not the only ones benefiting off of the sales. 12,811,437 dollars were collected in marijuana taxes, licensing, and fees, meaning the government got 12,811,437 dollars richer. As of Jul. 2015, 826,146 dollars have been distributed at jurisdictional level, out of the almost 13 million. Because of the success in sales and revenue, marijuana prices have decreased by 40 percent. Formerly ranging from 50-75 dollars, units are now priced ranging from 30-45 dollars. This price decrease will spark an increase in sales, because people will be more inclined to buy cheaper weed, and continue to purchase it regularly.

    The economy in Colorado is blossoming, being named the number one fastest growing economy by Business Insider, which is extremely well considering it is located in one of the most severely damaged economy-stricken first world countries. Jobs are becoming more and more plentiful, and the government is bringing in so much tax revenue, that they can put it into schools and programs, ironically, against the use of marijuana in youth.

    Since the unemployment rate is down to four percent as of Apr. 24, 2015, jobs must go somewhere other than dispensaries and growers. Jobs have gone into hotel business along with other tourist hot-spots, like restaurants and amusement attractions. More customers visit these places for the specific reason of legal marijuana. The more customers there are, the more jobs are required to successfully handle all of the consumers.

    In 2011, before the legalization, the unemployment rate was more than double than it is now. An 8.6 percent compared to today’s exact 4.2 percent. This although not all stemmed from, but mostly, is from the marijuana business.

    The government has taken the majority of taxes, revenues from the industry, and distributed it amongst the local governments. The whopping 28 percent tax rate on sales have  made the Colorado government rich and powerful, more so than usual. But, where are the rest of taxes going if not to local governments? The rest of the taxes collected go into programs and documents showing the risks of marijuana in youth and pregnant or breastfeeding women. The programs in schools extend to alcohol and prescription drug abuse prevention, however.

    The government created the School Based Substance Abuse Prevention and Intervention, (SAPI) that funds schools, non-profit organizations and community based health organizations. These findings are meant to improve the health behaviors in youth regarding drugs, legal or not, and alcohol. After a long list of demonstrations an organization must show is approved, SAPI will fund the organization, courtesy of the marijuana tax dollars. This may or may not have contributed to the significant drop in teen marijuana use in the state, significantly.

    The business life of a pot-grower or dispenser is not all big profits and easy money. These workers face hardships that come along with their workplaces and independent businesses. Starting with their grow houses, trouble usually comes early on in a business. The unusually low industrial vacancy rate of 3.1 percent is making grow houses a rare commodity.

    A recreational retailer also must get a retail license, which is an extensive process with inspections and applications. Marijuana products sold in retail, must also comply with a list of regulations. The time it takes to get to the point where you are a retail marijuana shop owner or retailer is long and hard — who is to say that they will even grant someone a license or not? If less precautions were taken, more retail marijuana shops would open, the more the already low unemployment rate would drop.

    The amount of marijuana legal to cultivate is 1,800 plants, as long as it fits the rules provided by the government. It must also be in a controlled warehouse, and used for the sole purpose of retail. A proposal stated that retailers wanted to double the number of plants allowed be grown at once, but the proposal was denied promptly. The government says they have this limit, this “production cap”, so that growers do not grow more than they are allowed to sell, nor too much that there will be too many overgrown warehouses, and the substance would no longer be an exclusive substance, if it became too abundant.

    On top of all of the growing and dispensary problems and long processes, once they are in business, making a living, the bank denies their deposits. Due to federal tax rules, dispensaries and growers are unable to put their profits in the bank. Groups pushing to have “pot-specific credit unions” were stalled when the federal government went against the idea that would open so many new opportunities, market and job wise. The existing banks or pot specific banks could be significantly more beneficial, to not only growers and dispensers, but the banking system also.

    A problem that does not involve a seller or grower, but the consumer of the product is the ingestion of marijuana infused food or drink products by a curious child. Advocacy groups have been working to put a ban on pot edibles due to the hospitalization of several children, brought in with the effects of THC, the substance in marijuana responsible for the psychological effects. This is a problem since the average adult is obviously much larger than a small child, the effects would become more apparent and possibly harmful in a child. This is not the law’s fault, however. Irresponsible parents, leaving their marijuana products laying around are the reasons that children so often ingest them.

    The marijuana jurisdiction in the government already regulates the amount of THC within each pot edible. 100 mg is allowed in each item’s serving. The amount of THC a person has in their system will also decide if the person is impaired enough so, that driving or operating machinery is not safe. These regulations, rules, and punishments are very similar to those of alcohol.

    ‘Colorado, though not the first to do so, has, by legalizing recreational marijuana, may have paved the road for the rest of America. States like Nevada have taken a large influence by Colorado, and will take the state’s current law and government to legalize their marijuana. Senator Patricia Farley likes and takes notice of the Colorado tourism and economy boost. “I think we can benefit from it”, she says in an interview back in May. She also believes that medical and recreational marijuana will do very well, especially in Nevada.

    Arizona, California, Maine, Nevada, and the District of Columbia are all predicted to legalize marijuana, recreationally, by 2016.


    Hyperlink titles, authors, and published in a suggested reading list.


    “Colorado Economy Continues Upward Trend Halfway through 2015.” – The Denver Post. Web. 13 Oct. 2015. <http://www.denverpost.com/business/ci_28492807/at-2015-midpoint-colorado-economy-continues-upward-trend>

    “Growth Industry: Nevada Lawmakers Get up-Close View of Colorado’s Pot Business.” LasVegasSun.com. N.p., Jan. 2015. Web. 13 Oct. 2015. <http://lasvegassun.com/news/2015/may/01/growth-industry-nevada-lawmakers-get–close-view-c/>

    “Marijuana &Amp; Colorado’s Economy – Marijuana Industry Group.” Marijuana Industry Group. Web. 13 Oct. 2015. <http://marijuanaindustrygroup.org/category/economy/colorado-economy/>

    “Marijuana &Amp; Colorado’s Economy – Marijuana Industry Group.” Marijuana Industry Group. Web. 13 Oct. 2015. <http://marijuanaindustrygroup.org/category/economy/colorado-economy/>

    “The Marijuana Legalization Votes That Will Matter In 2014.” Time. Time, n.d. Web. 13 Oct. 2015. <http://time.com/3433257/marijuana-pot-legalization-2014/>

    “Marijuana Sales Boosts Colorado’s Economy.” msnbc.com. NBC News Digital, n.d. Web. 13 Oct. 2015. <http://www.msnbc.com/the-cycle/watch/marijuana-sales-boosts-colorado-s-economy-380231235879>

    “Riding The Tourism High of Legal Marijuana – CBS 2 News – Marijuana Industry Group.” Marijuana Industry Group. N.p., 2015. Web. 13 Oct. 2015. <http://marijuanaindustrygroup.org/2015/04/riding-the-tourism-high-of-legal-marijuana-cbs-2-news/>

    “State Of Pot In Colorado A Year After Marijuana Legalization.” Tech Times RSS. N.p., Jan. 2015. Web. 13 Oct. 2015. <http://www.techtimes.com/articles/36274/20150301/state-of-pot-in-colorado-a-year-after-marijuana-legalization.htm>

    “That Time We Legalized Marijuana: 10 Defining Moments in the Recreational Era.” The Cannabist. Web. 13 Oct. 2015. <http://www.thecannabist.co/2014/02/06/time-legalized-marijuana-10-defining-moments-january-2014/4098/>

    “A Year After Legalizing Weed, Colorado Hasn’t Gone To Pot | Mother Jones.” Subscribe to Prashanth Kamalakanthans RSS. Web. 13 Oct. 2015. <http://m.motherjones.com/politics/2015/01/colorado-legal-marijuana-charts-statistics>

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  • 10/13/15--11:50: Chromebook Rollout at MHS
  • Senior Blue & Gold member Jasper Haag scanning a Chromebook. Photo by Samuel Martinez.

    Senior Blue & Gold member Jasper Haag scanning a Chromebook during the Freshmen Chromebook Rollout. Photo by Samuel Martinez.


    About a year ago, Malden High School was chosen by Sprint to be apart of the 1:1 initiative to help students connect to the internet at a reduced cost by providing them with Chromebooks. Last year, the school carried out a pilot program for the initiative, where every member of the Class of 2018 was given a Chromebook. English Teachers Sean Walsh and Natalia Brennan pitched the idea to Softbank and Sprint in June 2014 that Malden High should be one of the schools that are a part of this program. After four months of anticipation and a bit of silence on the subject, it was confirmed later that year that MHS was officially going Google.

    Walsh explained that the Chromebooks “give [students] access to resources, allows [them] to communicate with one another and with teachers, no longer is access to technology an issue because every [student and teacher] has access to a device.” Brennan added, “We can all collaborate and work towards extending technology beyond the school, giving a more consistent experience for students in their classes.”

    As soon as the program was confirmed, Walsh and Brennan created an Acceptable Use Policy to ensure that students and parents understood why and how the Chromebooks will be used throughout the school year. Once the AUP’s were signed and money was paid to cover insurance, 2,200 Chromebooks were delivered, unpacked and updated. Brennan notes that “every Chromebook that every [student] has in possession has been touched by a [teacher] to ensure that it works”.

    One new tool provided by Chromebooks that will significantly change the learning environment of MHS is Google Classroom. This makes submitting online assignments to teachers much more easier and organized. Before Google Classroom, submitting an online assignment through Google Docs required a teacher to know all his students’ email addresses and have to go back into Google Drive, cluttering all of the essays and having to identify them by their label.  

    Brennan explained that “Google Classroom has cleaned this up and is a place where [teachers] can assign things to [students] very easily as it get delivered straight to [students], and [students ]can turn documents, videos, presentations, discussions very easily.” Walsh also added that “having one account that is linked with your google account is a more consistent experience from class to class as all classes are in the same place, keeping students more organized.”

    The Chromebooks benefit all sorts of classes around Malden High School. For english classes in particular by providing an easily accessible resource for research papers and projects. It allows them to push into creative assessments, as there will no longer be 9-12 grade written final exams. Every student will be doing a portfolio by creating a site, creating a portfolio, building on it for all four years and keeping it all in one place.

    For math classes, students will now have access to graphing tools and this enables students to connect graphs, equations and their real life applications. In science classes, students can now submit graphs and tables for laboratory experiments online as well as viewing helpful online videos for step-by-step explanations on how to go about these experiments. For history classes, students can now take notes, complete worksheets and mark up the text online while using an online textbook, taking the weight off of students shoulders.

    Brennan adds that “watching students progress throughout their academic careers was previously done by keeping folders, which was not super successful in tracking student work, now this is a super easy way to watch your progress through all four years. Teachers no longer have to compete for access to technology for their classes, and it makes research projects much quicker to complete. One thing is for sure: it is going to take some time to adjust to the new technology-dominated environment of MHS.

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  • 10/14/15--11:16: From the Editor
  • If you are interested in the politics of the United States (and you probably should be, since you live here,) chances are you witnessed both primary presidential debates, both Democratic and Republican. It has come to my attention as well as the attention of many others, the dramatic difference between said debates. Even if you have not watched them for yourself, it is likely you heard of the somewhat sad shade-throwing contest that was the Republican primary, and the opposite that was the Democratic primary. It is good to remember in times of political conflict, the difference between a debate and an insult contest. Just a thought.

    From left, Democratic presidential candidates Jim Webb, Bernie Sanders, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Martin O'Malley and Lincoln Chafee on the debate stage on Tuesday, Oct. 13, 2015, in Las Vegas. (Josh Haner/NYT/Pool via Zuma Press/TNS)

    From left, Democratic presidential candidates Jim Webb, Bernie Sanders, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Martin O’Malley and Lincoln Chafee on the debate stage on Tuesday, Oct. 13, 2015, in Las Vegas. (Josh Haner/NYT/Pool via Zuma Press/TNS)

    The Huffingtonpost article here gives a more thorough outline of the debates:

    Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, center, speaks on the debate stage at the Reagan Library in Simi Valley, Calif., on Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2015. (Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times/TNS)

    Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, center, speaks on the debate stage at the Reagan Library in Simi Valley, Calif., on Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2015. (Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times/TNS)

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  • 10/14/15--11:30: Sports Profile: Pema Kunsal
  • Senior Pema Kunsal has been playing volleyball for almost four years of her life. As well as being on the varsity volleyball team for the past three years, she has also been playing lacrosse since her freshmen year. For Kunsal, volleyball has been her number one sport ever since she started playing in middle school.  Her favorite thing about volleyball is being able to play the sport she loves with her friends. Kunsal loves the fact that she is able to gain a strong relationship with each member of her team. The special thing about the varsity volleyball team is the fact that there is no “star player” or “MVP” says Kunsal. “We need everyone on the team to cooperate in order to make a good play.” This is why the close bonds created throughout the team are vital in order to create success.

    Being on this team has inspired Kunsal to become the best player she can be. Her favorite position to play is being a passer in the back row. Her main goal for her team this season is to become the Greater Boston League champs as well as advance far in states. One of the girls’ GBL opponents, Medford, is Kunsal’s favorite team to face. Not only are they part of the same league and competing for the same title, but they also have equal skill levels to the Malden team which always leads to an unforgettable match.

    The most challenging thing about volleyball is having the ability to communicate. “Without good communication we can’t have a successful team” Kunsal urges. Since Kunsal and many members of the team have created close relationships and friendships, their communication skills this year have been impeccable. This is a major reason to why this year’s team has been the most successful in all of Malden High history.

    To all new athletes, Kunsal would advise them to do the sport that they really love. Creating close relationships with  teammates is a major part of being part of a team. “There is no such thing as a star player or MVP because every team member plays a huge role on a team, so the closer the relationship and the better the trust you have with your teammates the more successful your team will be” suggests Kunsal.  Her advice is taken from her own experiences while on the team. By being a strong team player who possesses both loyalty and a positive attitude Kunsal has become a role model to other members on the volleyball team.

    bumping the ball. Photo by James Mac.

    Kunsal bumping the ball. Photo by James Mac.

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  • 10/15/15--11:39: Field Hockey Instagram Post

    A picture of the girls field hockey team. Photo by Jesaias Benitez. 

    A photo posted by @theblueandgold on

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    Mood swings are common among teenagers based on their minds and bodies yet to be fully developed. “Cognitive control systems lag behind emotional development” (Shallcross) for teens, accounting for adolescents having difficulty in coping with their emotions. Other contributors to emotional instability include the transition to high school and all the pressures that accompany it. 

     But “as teens get physically and mentally more mature” there is a “gradual stabilization in moods across the teenage years”(Shallcross). Although, there are cases where emotions continue to be unstable due from mental illnesses such as schizophrenia that is often not detectable until later adolescence. 

    Anxiety remained a variable throughout teenage years, the highest levels being at the start and end of adolescence. One reason to help explain such levels can be accounted for in a teen’s progression from middle to high school and then the years after high school in his transition into adulthood. 

    To read more on this topic visit npr.org

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    October 6, 2015 was the start of the teen tutoring program at the Malden Teen Enrichment Center (MTEC).

    Arlene Ceppetelli, a former teacher at Malden High School, runs the tutoring program. Ceppetelli has been teaching for 40 years and expressed that she “[loves] working with teens,” which makes the MTEC a perfect match for her.

    The program has been running since 2013 and is open to high school students as well as younger students seeking help with classwork or homework. One of Ceppetelli’s former students heard that she was doing a small tutoring program after school in her classroom while Ceppetelli was teaching at MHS. They then both decided it would be more beneficial for the students if the tutoring program was to be expanded at the teen center.

    Students are able to receive help with any subject they are struggling with, including various levels of math, science, history, foreign language, english, and sometimes health. Ceppetelli wants to “help students with their academics [so that they can] become stronger students,” in order to be able to reach their full potential.

    Usually if a student has a problem in a certain area of academics, teachers in MHS are known to contact Ceppetelli to try to assist that particular student. Ceppetelli looks to form to know the students on a deeper level beyond academics. She mentioned that she chats with them about what is going on in their life and what is happening at school.

    Not only does this program help students improve their understanding of material they are learning in school, but it also is a great way to develop friendships. There are always activities and opportunities to socialize and have fun when visiting the Teen Center.

    The program runs on Tuesdays and Thursday from 3:00pm to 5:00pm/5:30. The MTEC is open to any teens in Malden, and is located on the corner of Main Street and Ferry Street.

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  • 10/15/15--11:43: LGBTQ+ in Our World Today
  • Over the summer, a monumental decision was reached by the Supreme Court. On June 26, 2015, gay marriage became legal everywhere in the United States. This, a huge day in history, was obviously celebrated and #LoveWins trended on twitter with 2.6 million tweets. It seems like you could not go on any social media site and not see people talk about it. By the next day though there were already articles talking about how this does not mean that everything regarding LGBTQ+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and any other identities and sexualities along the spectrum) rights in America is solved and that there is still a lot left to do.

    Gay marriage being legal now is a huge issue. It had a huge reaction and everyone heard about it, that cannot be argued. What is not talked about enough is that the Supreme Court vote to legalize it was 5-4. If one person had flipped their vote, gay marriage being legalized and the surge of support from it would not have happened. If the decision was 9-0 or 8-1 it would have showed how much the United States has progressed. Instead it was one person who had the deciding vote on whether everyone could have the right of getting married. June 26th could have easily been a day full of disappointment if one person had decided against it.

    In the United States it is still legal in various states to fire people based on their sexuality. Not only that, but there are other problems including LGBTQ+ kids not getting enough sex education and no gender neutral bathrooms. LGBTQ+ people are usually treated poorly in foster homes and violence is more likely to happen against them.

    One of the problems that is a popular topic of discussion in the LGBTQ+ world is the fact that  gay men are not allowed to donate blood. They are put in the highest risk blood-donor category which is accompanied by people like intravenous (IV) drug users and people who have been in a country for more than 5 years that has a deadly disease. That may already seem unfair to you, but it might spark your interest that in 40 states people can donate blood immediately after getting a tattoo or being treated for chlamydia, gonorrhea, and genital herpes within that past year. The ban put up in 1985 states that you can not donate if you have had homosexual intercourse since 1977. This is just one of the things that LGBTQ+ people still have to face.

    In the context of the world however, blood donation in the United States is a small concern. There are a lack of LGBTQ+ rights everywhere in the world, although it is different in each individual country. In Europe, only 12 out of 50 countries have legalized gay marriage. In 27 countries there is either no recognition of gay marriage or there is a constitutional ban placed. It is not only the government at fault though, people are often discriminated against for being gay and are not comfortable doing things as simple as holding hands in public. Just in 2013 when Montenegró was trying to have its first pride event, the participants were attacked. There were hundreds of people shouting “kill the gays” and throwing glass or rocks at the people attending the event. There is also the problem of homophobic bullying at schools. In a survey taken it showed that at least 65% of openly gay people in schools face bullying, and the school heads do not do much to help.

    Topics of concern also span into South America. Only 3 out of the 13 countries have gay marriage legalized and support for LGBTQ+ people is only above 50% in 3 countries. In the country of Guyana homosexual acts could be punished by life imprisonment, LGBTQ+ marriage is illegal, and same-sex adoption is not permitted, even for a step-child. Same-sex relations in the Caribbean have a possible 15-year jail sentence in Antigua and Barbuda.

    Asia has barely any rights for LGBTQ+ people besides same-sex sexual activity being legal, and not even all countries have that. Recognition of same-sex unions, same-sex marriage, adoption by same-sex couples, LGBTQ+ military service, anti-discrimination laws concerning sexual orientation, and laws concerning gender identity and expression are basically nonexistent in Asia. There are 18 countries in Asia that do not  allow homosexual activity with a minor punishment being one year in prison and a major punishment being the death penalty. In a poll, 23 countries showed their opposition to homosexuality while only 10 showed their support. The countries in opposition included North Korea, Bangladesh, and (further West) Saudi Arabia, and the countries supporting included Thailand, South Korea, and Japan.

    In Australia gay marriage is illegal everywhere. Transgender people are required to have a sex-change surgery in order to be able to change their gender almost everywhere, and if a person is transgender and they are married, they would have to get divorced to legally change their gender. Same sex couples cannot adopt children in Queensland, Victoria, the Northern Territory, or South Australia. Same-sex step parents cannot legally adopt their partner’s children in Queensland, South Australia or the Northern Territory. In the Australian Marriage Amendment Act of 2004, it says “marriage means the union of a man and a woman to the exclusion of all others, voluntarily entered into for life.”

    Africa is extremely conservative with gay rights compared to most places in the world. In Mauritania, Sudan, and northern Nigeria, homosexuality is punishable by death, and in Nigeria there is a law that states that if you support homosexuals or know about homosexual activity and do not report it, you could receive a 10-year jail sentence. At least 34 out of 54 countries have outlawed homosexuality.

    In Uganda, both male and female participation in homosexual activity is illegal. In 2012 the speaker of Uganda’s legislative body, the Parliament of Uganda, said that they were going to make a revised anti-homosexuality bill that would include harsher penalties against people who were suspected of being LGBTQ+. The punishments would include long-term imprisonment and the death penalty for people who have been caught multiple times. Individuals that promote LGBTQ+ rights would be fined or imprisoned.

    There are also places in Africa like Senegal, where It is illegal for both women and men to participate in homosexual activity. Rumors surrounding the possibility of one being homosexual could land them in jail. Their punishment could be anything from 1-5 years of imprisonment and a fine up to $2,600. In recent years, there have been waves of arrests, detentions, and attacks. Recently, less attacks have happened but that is suspected because people are too scared to be open about their sexuality. If they were, they could face rejection from their community as well as violence from their family. According to an article written by Colin Stewart, a prosecutor on a case about gay men, said “There are acts that our society will never be ready to accept,” talking about homosexuals.

    Although there are victories worth celebrating, that does not mean that we can disregard all of the problems that LGBTQ+ people are still facing. It will take a long time for the world to be on a pro-LGBTQ+ position surrounding these rights, but hopefully it will happen in our lifetime.

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    Meet the Blue and Gold staff of 2015 and 2016.

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    The girls soccer team defeated their biggest rival, Medford, 1-0 in a nail biter of a match on October 14, 2015. One goal, from junior Felicia Lombardi, sealed the deal for the Golden Tornadoes.

    From the first whistle to the last, the game was back and forth, both teams giving it their all and competing harder than the other. It was a

    Junior Cleverina Cong rushes up the field alongside her teammate freshman Jill Tramandozzi. Photo by Liam Elliott.

    Junior Cleverina Cong rushes up the field alongside her teammate sophomore Izabelly Barros. Photo by Liam Elliott.

    shot from about 40 feet out that changed the game and tilted the game in Malden’s favor. The girls played hard in front of a crowd filled with important people at Malden High School, including Athletic Director Dan Keefe, Holland House principal Marilyn Slattery, and principal Dana Brown. With all of these people in attendance, the girls played with all of their hearts and left it all on the field.

    Unlike their games against Everett and Lawrence, the Medford Mustangs did not make it an easy game to win. From the start both teams were constantly handing possession over to the other, soon enough the fans at the game realized that this game was going to come down to mistakes–whoever made the least would be the victor. Senior captain Jacqueline Smith showed leadership and heart throughout the game, constantly moving and never standing still. At one point in the first half, Smith was skipping around to stay warm and sync her run to the net in perfect unison with junior Brynn Kankel’s free kick.

    Back and forth, back and forth, that was the rhythm of the game until Lombardi capitalized on an open lane for a shot. She planted her foot and came down with a punishment on that soccer ball, sticking it in the top right corner of the net. She broke the game open at the 21 minute mark, and from there on out the game was in the hands of Malden.

    But that was not the last offensive chance for the team. Senior Zeina Greige and freshman Jill Tramandozzi both had multiple rushes up the field but the moments were stolen away by the play of Medford’s defense.

    At halftime Malden held the lead at 1-0 and it did not change for the rest of the game. In the second half the game was a continuation of the first, back and forth, back and forth. Smith states that “[She] thought that the win over Medford was an amazing achievement but that there is still room for improvement.” 

    With this win the girls improve to 6-5 on the season, meaning that they need just 3 more wins to make it to the MIAA State Tournament.


    Correction: An earlier version of this article included an incorrect photo caption that listed freshman Jill Tramandozzi as the teammate running beside junior Cleverina Cong. 

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    Senior Richard Melgar poses for a picture. Photo by Ana Kerr.

    Senior Richard Melgar poses for a picture. Photo by Ana Kerr.

    Senior Richard Melgar has been a member of the Malden High School boys varsity soccer team since his sophomore year. Soccer has always been a part of his family; it is in his roots. It all started when Melgar was nine years old; he added how “in [his] opinion [he] started a little late but [he] picked it up quickly and seriously started playing on a team at the age of 11.”

    Family is Melgar’s main reason for playing soccer. Growing up, Melgar was always fascinated by seeing his family play and how there were so many different and interesting foot techniques involved in soccer. Melgar has learned and improved a significant amount in the past three years that he has been on the team, admitting that “every year there is always something [he] could improve on.”

    As seasons come and go, the love that Melgar has for the game continues to grow, and considering the fact that it is his last year at MHS, he is truly trying to absorb all that he can during his last season. Melgar has so much love for this sport, everything about it inspires him; but something Melgar will never forget are the wild bus rides coming back from away games, mentioning how “seeing [his] boys smile and spread their love for the game just makes [him] realize that [they] are the reason he sticks with the sport.”

    Memories are what Melgar got most out of being part of such of an amazing team. The best part of it all to Melgar was being able to play with his best friend, fellow senior player Matthew Acuna. Melgar says explains why, saying the because “[he is] a right winger and [Acuna] is a left,” the two “always got each other’s backs.” No matter what Acuna and Melgar are going through, they always hype each other up as if it was their last game. It is a bond that Melgar holds dear to his heart, that thanks to MHS soccer, he was able to forge.

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    This year, a new club opened up at Malden High School for students to explore vegetarianism, veganism, and nutrition in general.

    The Veg Club was started by junior Ariel Gustowski, who says, “when [she] went vegan, there wasn’t anyone [she] could talk to about it.” This is one of the many reasons Gustowski created the Veg Club, including to make new friends, and to learn new ideas from others. Gustowski also adds that she plans on bringing knowledge, ideas, and a unique point of view to the Veg Club.

    Justine Muir, MHS’s Special Education Program Manager, is the Veg Club’s advisor. Muir has been a vegetarian for nine years, and she tells the club members that the reason she became a vegetarian was because of a book she read, “Food Matters” by Mark Bittman, a book about responsible and healthy eating.

    Muir expressed to the members of the Veg Club that “[She] decided that in order to help the environment, animals, and [her] health, [she] was going to eat a plant based diet from then on.” Muir also adds that as a vegetarian it is nice to get together with other people who enjoy the lifestyle.

    The Veg Club was started this year, and the first meeting was October 8th, 2015. Veg Club meets every Thursday after school for about an hour in H410. Ms. Muir says, “New members are always welcome, and you don’t have to be a vegetarian to join the group.”

    The Veg Club not only meets to discuss important matters in the vegetarian/vegan community, but they also meet to talk about veg-related events and programs.

    Muir also explained that the club plans on attending Boston Veg Food Fest this fall, which is a widely popular event in Boston with food samples, speakers, authors, cooking demonstrations, and shopping. The Veg Club also plans on hosting some cooking events and movie nights to help educate MHS and bring people together.

    Regarding the future of the Veg Club, Ms. Muir says, “[They are a student led group, so the future of [Veg Club] will depend on the student leaders. As an advisor, [she] will support whatever the group would like to do.” Ms. Muir, Ariel Gutowski, and the other members of Veg Club plan to keep the club going, and continue to plan and attend events that apply to the main focuses of the club.

    THe Veg Club meets in room H410 on Thursdays after school, and is open to any vegetarians, vegans, those who are interested in changing their diet, or anyone who wants to learn more about nutrition.

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  • 10/19/15--12:01: Monday Updates: 10/19/15
  • Here are updates for the week of October 19 on current events in Malden.

    Some information was pulled from the morning announcements and the Tornado Times.



    • Girls Soccer         10/19/15: @Somerville 10/24/15: Melrose
    • Boys Soccer         10/19/15: Somerville  10/23/15: Melrose
    • Field Hockey       10/19/15: Haverhill 10/24/15: Melrose
    • Football                10/23/15: Everett
    • Golf                       10/19/15: State Sectionals
    • Girls Volleyball   10/19/15: Haverhill 10/21/15: Somerville 10/23/15: Salem
    • Cross Country     10/24/15: GBL Championship @Everett

    NOTE: @=Away Game



    • On Thursday, October 22nd, the class of 2018 is hosting Dancing With The Teachers. The tickets are $3, and are being sold at all four lunches.
    • On Tuesday, October 20, there is a Chromebook Information meeting at the high school.
    • This Saturday, October 24, there is an AP English Prep Session at Malden.


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    Below are links to girls soccer articles.




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