The Phs Emerald

9-11 awards

Exchange Students: Heading Home

Hello, I'm Judit Asensio, one of the exchange students from Spain. If someone asks me how I feel about leaving Michigan, I really don't know how to express all the emotions and thoughts that that question gives me. I don't want to go back home, I miss my family and friends and it's true I can't wait to see them, but I don't want to get on that plane because I know that the minute that I leave, this year is just going to be a memory. The thing I'm going to miss the most is definitely all the people I've met this year. In Michigan, I found a place where I feel I fit in and where I found people that made each and every second of the experience amazing. If I had to pick a highlight of this year it would probably be going to California, Chicago, and Florida with my host family, and also all the dances that I went to since it was something I wanted to do since I was a kid. I would describe this year as my second home.

We also talked with Vinicius Larsen Santos, an exchange student from Brazil. Vinicius told us that he feels a little bit bittersweet about going home, he is happy to see his friends and family again but he is sad that the exchange year is over. He says that the thing that he's most excited about going home for is seeing his dog again and the Brazilian weather since he doesn't really appreciate the long cold winter in Michigan. Finally, Vinicius says, “the highlight of my exchange year was getting to know all these amazing people and making friends” and that he would describe his abroad year with the words development, persistence, and courage.

We also talked to Julius Wettschereck, one of the exchange students from Germany. He said that he is going to miss being here but that he is excited to see his family and friends again. Julius explained that what he is going to miss the most about the USA is the high school sports. He also said that the highlight of his year here was being able to walk at graduation and that he would describe his exchange year as inspirational, amazing, and interesting.

Philip Wagner, another one of the exchange students from Germany said that the thing he's most excited about going home to is seeing his family, but that he is still sad about leaving Michigan and that he is going to miss his friends so much. Philip’s highlight of the exchange year was being able to see Niagara Falls and he would describe this year as a great experience.

Anna Grue, our exchange student from Denmark, was telling us how weird she feels about leaving the USA. She says, “I’m going to miss high school, friends, and my family but I'm also so excited to go home and see my family and boyfriend.” Anna tells us how she cant wait to eat Danish food again but that she is going to miss her host family, friends, and also Taco Bell so much. Anna’s highlights of the year were being in the student section during football season and playing soccer during the spring. She would describe the year as exciting, challenging, and fun.

Gilem Sendin, one of the exchange students from Spain said, “I feel excited to see my family and friends from Spain, but sad at the same time about having to say bye to my host family and all the new friends I've made this year.” He also told us that he can't wait to eat Spanish food again, but that he is going to miss his host family and the new people he met this unforgettable year. Gilem's highlight of his exchange year is scoring the first goal for Pennfield of the season in soccer, and he would describe this year as an unforgettable amazing year.

We asked Helis Kiis, an exchange student from Estonia how she feels about going home and she said, “It’s bittersweet. Bitter because I’m leaving the life I’ve created here behind and sweet because I’m going to see my friends and family back home.” Helis says how she can't wait to eat Estonian food that she has been craving for months, but that she is also going to miss the people here and the track meets and practices. Helis highlights of the year were the whole track season, meeting new people, and how everyone is so supportive. She would describe her experience here as exciting, interesting, and rewarding.

Another exchange student from Germany that we talked to was Sophie Klemm, she said, “I have mixed feelings, of course I am excited to go back and tell everyone about my last 10 months here but I know that when I leave I won’t see most people here ever again and it makes me sad. Honestly wish I could stay longer, I really fell in love with this place. It was the best choice I’ve ever made to come here and I knew from the beginning that the goodbye won’t be easy.” She also explains how she is going to miss the people in Battle Creek so much. Sophie says, “I met incredible people here and got so close to them. It’s going to be really hard to leave all this behind and I will miss talking to my host family and the friends I made.” Finally, the highlights of her exchange year were the football games, her trip to Disney World in Florida, and prom. She would describe her exchange year as adventurous, exciting, and unforgettable.

Pepo Adaliz-Gonzalez, another exchange student from Spain explains that he doesn't really want to go back, but he is also excited at the same time to see friends and family and eat Mediterranean food. Pepo says, “Definitely what I'm going to miss the most are my friends, I have made some relationships that will go till I die. I love a lot of people here; so, it will be awesome to keep in touch with them and manage to keep these amazing relationships.” Pepo also explained that the highlight of his exchange year was all the anecdotes with his friends and the outstanding community of Pennfield including staff, parents, and friends. He also jokes about getting diabetes in this country, a thing that changed a lot of his life. He would describe his year as an unforgettable journey.

-Judit Asensio ‘24

Congratulations Class of 2022!

Pennfield HS Staff 2022

Senior Picnic 2022

High School Dodgeball

View more dodgeball photos here

Congratulations seniors

Congratulations to the Pennfield High School Class of 2022! These students have worked so hard to get to this point, everyone is very proud. Students and parents are looking forward to seeing all of the achievements each of these graduates are going to make. Many memories have been made with this group of students, and lots of friendships and relationships have been built. Wish each and every one of you the best of luck, Pennfield is going to miss you all.

-Aubrey Picketts '23

Designing the commencement program

Hailey Foreman was given a very special opportunity by Mr. Kirkland over the past few weeks. He offered her the opportunity to make the commencement design. Hailey said, “He saw I was a decent artist in art and he knew that I was pretty decent at graphic design as well.”

Hailey said she is very excited to be given this opportunity and got started right away. Her excitement only grew once she was able to get onto the computer and start designing. She said she was happy she could do what she saw fit for the commencement and was able to show her own creativity.

She said in future years she would recommend taking this opportunity to anyone who was offered it, she said it was really fun and she had a good time doing it.

-Madison Wood '23

Empty Hallways

The empty green hallways,

[are] silent on summer days.

No footsteps make a sound,

[as] no person is around.

Chapters come to a close,

[so] a heartbeat’s thudding slows.

Friend says farewell to friend,

[as] seniors meet year’s end.

-Jack Hughes '22

open houses

It’s open house season! We all know most seniors are ready to leave and start a new journey, but also very upset to leave high school so soon. It’s typical for seniors to have an open house following graduation. Thank you to senior Rachel Lyttle, Hailey Forman, and Cassie Mckeever for sharing your open house plans.

Rachel Lyttle is having over 215 people invited to her open house and is very excited to have them over and spend time with everyone. Rachel says it took 2-3 months to come up with the plan and the whole theme and how many people she wanted. “We plan on having food, treats, cake, and cupcakes,” Rachel says. She is planning on having her theme Pennfield colors.

Hailey Forman is having her open house the same day as her brother's birthday party, with a Paw Patrol theme. Hailey mentions there will be around 40 people coming to her open house. They will be making bbq ribs and spending as much time with family as possible. Then she plans to hang out with friends afterward. She is very excited and very ready for her open house.

Cassie Mckeever took only about a week to plan her open house. She is inviting around 40 people. Grand Valley colors will be her theme for her open house as she’s going there for college. Cassie plans on having family over during the day and having an after party with friends. She is very excited to celebrate graduation with her friends and family!

-Mikayla Bennett '24

The teachers our seniors will miss

Graduating and leaving high school is such a bittersweet, yet memorable experience. Saying farewell to friends and close teachers will definitely be an emotional experience for some. It is important to thank those who have impacted your lives before graduating into adulthood, so here are a few highlights from our seniors and who they will miss most out of our Pennfield staff.

Starting out our list is Mrs. Treadway with her enthusiasm and creativity. “Mrs. Treadway would have to be my favorite teacher. She was able to connect with the students and make us all excited to be in her class.” - Nichelle Wood.

“I think I am going to miss Ms. Royer most. She had a great sense of humor, treated me with respect, and was willing to let me help her when things weren’t working. We gossiped about school drama, we complained about how the kids treat the cameras, I don’t even know how many times I’ve fixed her tripod. She was and always will be a great teacher.” - Tim Simonds tells us about his friendship with Ms. Royer and her personable attitude.

Additionally, we have the infamous Mr. Bowen. “I will miss Mr. Bowen the most because he has really helped me a lot and he’s taught me so much about building relationships with my peers and teacher. He has really helped me fall in love with teaching because I want to be the kind of teacher he is: a teacher who makes a difference in their students' lives and will be remembered years after we graduate. I really hope he keeps teaching and never loses his love for it.” - Izzy Eves leaves us a beautiful example of how teachers impact their students every day.

Thank you so much Pennfield teachers for helping our students every single day. We will never forget you and what you have done for us.

-Madison Hoshaw '22

Different colleges

As the school year starts to come to a close and summer is slowly creeping up on the students of Pennfield, some seniors are already thinking about the start of their next school year. Many Pennfield seniors have been accepted to colleges all over the state and country. Kaiden Bowden was accepted to the University of Michigan and will be studying biochemistry and spanish. Kaiden explained that he chose Michigan because he thinks he will be provided with a good education, and it will be cheaper because he lives in the state. He also shared that he is excited because “Ann Arbor is a very pretty city and there will be a lot of new people to meet.” Kaiden is most nervous about the workload and busy schedule that college will bring, but is excited to switch things up and transition from high school to college.

Hunter Shive is a little more undetermined about his major, but knows that he will be playing soccer while attending Olivet College. He shared that location was a big factor when making his decision, but decided Olivet was a good choice because it is only about 30 minutes away from his house.

One student who is leaving the state is Micheal Bowdige who is attending Bowling Green State University in Ohio. Micheal is going into his basic training this summer and fall and shared that he chose this university because it is close to his air base in Toledo. Micheal was accepted for fall of 2023 for Flight Technology Operator. He shared that he is most excited for the new location and experiences, but those experiences can also be nerve wracking at the same time.

We want to wish our seniors all the luck for their next chapters starting very soon!

-Dustin Fleming '22

senior spotlights

Kayela Yore, a senior here at PHS, is really happy to be graduating. She doesn’t plan on going to college, however she still plans on working. Kayela believes that high school is very difficult and mentally draining and that as long as you keep up and stay on task you’re not going to fall behind. She’s going to miss all of the dances and rallies we have because she always had so much fun during them. I had asked Kayela what she couldn't live without, and she responded that she would never be able to live without her friends. “They’re what keep me going most times and I couldn’t imagine where I would be without them.” She wasn’t able to pick just two things, so of course she also added that she couldn’t live without her phone, for emergency purposes.

Riley Jackson is a senior here at PHS. After graduating, her short term goals involve getting an apartment, getting a car, and finding a better job. As of right now, Riley works at McDonald’s. A long term goal of Riley’s is moving out of state, to Arizona. “I’m going to miss the friends that I’ve gained here, and the teachers that have influenced me and been such a big part of my life.” She plans on staying employed at McDonald’s until she turns 18, and afterwards working at a factory. Riley says that high school has been extremely mentally draining. “I struggled very hard with my mental health the first three years and it affected my grades plenty. Nothing helped except getting through day by day and figuring out my stance in myself and the world.” She also says that she’ll never forget when she and her friend, Ione Davis, hosted the talent show their sophomore year. She plans on searching for art programs, but she’s unsure of exactly what.

-Alyssa Brown '25

plans after HIGH SCHOOL

The class of 2022 is nearing graduation and ready to start their next chapter. Mackenzie McNees told us, “When I was a freshman I wanted to be a veterinarian, but now my goals are to travel the world and take photos everywhere.” McNees wants to be a real estate photographer. She told us that she wasn’t going to miss high school, she was only going to miss her friends. She wanted to go to Michigan State, but she got a full scholarship at Eastern Michigan University. McNees said, “I was going to take a gap year, but now I am going to attend Eastern, and plan to move to Tennessee after college.”

Ione Davis told us that when she started high school, she didn’t really have plans for after graduation. Right now she wants to continue working at her current job, Plato's Closet. Davis told us, “I didn't really have any goals, just graduate and get a good job that I love. And luckily I found that before I even graduated, and without needing to go to college”. She said that she is definitely going to miss high school. She's going to miss having the comfort of coming to a place for a few hours a day, where kids can spend time with their friends and teachers. Davis said, “I do want to move after high school just so I have somewhere new to explore and more people that I can get to know.”

Jade Shroll wanted to be a nurse her freshman year of high school. When Jade was younger she wanted to be a veterinarian and now wants to be a pediatric nurse. Jade said, “I think I will miss high school because I won’t see the people that I usually see everyday. It will definitely be a big change for me.” Jade is unsure if she wants to move after high school, but she does know that she doesn’t want to be in Battle Creek forever. Jade’s plans after high school are to finish getting her associates degree at KVCC and then transferring to a University.

-Carly Robbins '23 & Ayden Ramos '24

Favorite memories from seniors

Andrea Bautista

All of the memories from pep rallies are Andrea’s favorite, she loves when her class comes together and tries to win because they are all competitive. For elementary school, Andrea will miss not having a care in the world about what anyone thinks. Middle school will be missed due to the science classes, they were always so funny to her. Also, Andrea will miss all of the high school football games. Out of all of the three, elementary school will be the one she will miss most of all because it was so easy. Mrs. Treadway will have to be Andrea’s favorite teacher. According to Andrea, “She was always a great teacher and understood we have other classes, also other things going on in our life.” Being involved in things like NHS, Link, and Student Government has helped her make more memories with her classmates.The sports Andrea has played are volleyball and track. During freshman year, she played volleyball and it was an okay experience for her. Track is kind of a bittersweet for her because for the first three years it was really fun and she had a lot of friends on the team. During senior year she barely knew anyone that joined, besides sophomores and juniors. Missing school after graduation is, again, bittersweet for her. She enjoyed most of it besides the work and classes. Andrea says “The older I get the more freedom I get, so the more I enjoy it.” The best advice Andrea could give to any underclassmen is to take it one day at a time, get your work done first, and don’t forget to have fun or you’ll be miserable. Finally, she said don’t blame the school for all of your misery and if you have the mindset to be miserable all year then you will be.

Delainee Etheridge

Football games, dances, and water gun assassins would have to be some of Delainee’s favorite memories. Her favorite memory from elementary school was always dressing up every day and all of the field trips. Delainee’s favorite memory from middle school would have to be student government and track. High school will be the one Delainee will miss the most, she enjoyed all of the freedom and her close friends that she spent time with. Throughout high school, she got to experience many things and she is so grateful for that. Ms. Collins is most definitely her favorite teacher. According to Delainee, “She has impacted me in so many ways and has helped me with my health, physically and mentally. I love having her for my women’s fitness teacher and student government teacher for the last three years.” In her opinion, the senior class this year has gotten really close. They have made group chats and private stories to talk to each other, also planning hangouts after football games and dances. Maddie Bombersbach and Delainee have been best friends since first grade. Their moms were best friends in school as well so this allowed them to hangout all of the time. They have cheered together since they were seven years old, and it has kept their bond very strong. Throughout middle school Delainee did cross country, sideline cheer, and track. In high school, she continued to do sideline cheer and track, but she also did competitive cheer from freshman to junior year. Now, she is doing soccer for her senior year. She is going to miss playing sports very much once she graduates. Sports have given Delainee so many experiences, like going to states junior year for competitive cheer and friendships that she will remember forever. She won’t miss the school work or all of the stress. But, she will miss the opportunity of getting to be with her closest friends everyday. The best advice Delainee can give to any of the underclassman is to do your work, don’t procrastinate until the last minute, and stay out of drama because it causes so many unnecessary problems.

-Aubrey Picketts '23

Welcome Ms. Kane

Excitingly, Pennfield High School has welcomed a new English teacher to the building. Luckily for us, we have welcomed Ms. Kane to our Pennfield Panther family. Ms. Kane’s last time teaching Seniors was three years ago during her training years, since then she previously taught eighth grade.

A drastic change, and when asked about her transition, we were all pleased to hear her smooth changeover. “I’m enjoying being a part of the Pennfield community! I’ve got great classes and wonderful students in them. The staff at Pennfield have been helpful in guiding me in my transition from Hamilton to Pennfield.”

Sticking to her passions, Ms. Kane knew she wanted to become a teacher when in her Sophomore year of High School, several teachers influenced her with their abilities to lead to encourage students. Ms. Kane since then knew her devotion to connecting with students and elevating the way they read and understand English. In her free time, she loves to read and play sports, she also speaks happily of her time working at a music festival and meeting several celebrities.

Ms. Kane graduated from Grand Valley State University with a double major in Secondary Education English and History. She does not have any children, but a cat named Oscar (who is indeed Grouchy). Ms. Kane only expects to have good times with her students and hopes to teach and influence her seniors before it is their time to graduate! If you’re interested in a new good read, or even what celebrities she’s met, go ahead and welcome Ms. Kane yourself.

Maddison Hoshaw '22

Mr. corcoran retirement

Mr. Corcoran, a teacher, and coach at Pennfield will be retiring at the end of this school year. He started in 1991-92 making this his 30th year at Pennfield. Over the years, he doesn’t know exactly how many students he’s taught but estimates around 3000 total students throughout his tenure. He wants every student he’s ever taught to know that he wants them to succeed, and he cares about every single one of them. He says one of his favorite things about teaching is getting to see former students and share memories with them from his classes. Mr. Corcoran said his favorite moments as a teacher at Pennfield were during events like spirit week and the homecoming assemblies. He loved competing with the other classes and said winning the spirit cup wasn’t too bad either.

Being a competitor at heart, Mr. Corcoran has coached many sports during his time at Pennfield, including high school wrestling, middle school wrestling, boys varsity tennis, and girls varsity tennis. His favorite moment coaching at Pennfield was when he and his high school wrestling team won the state championship. He remembers the sound of “We Are the Champions” blasting through the speakers as Pennfield got to lead the team march at the Kellogg Center. He remembers how many people from all over the city of Battle Creek came to support Pennfield and says the community and school spirit were incredible. Mr. Corcoran has one final message for Pennfield. “I would also like to say that if I had to do it all again I wouldn't change a thing. I am very thankful that I had the privilege to be a teacher at Pennfield and I will always cherish the memories that were created with the staff and the students. Go Panthers!” Thank you Mr. Corcoran for everything you have done for our schools, our students, and the community as a whole.

-Shane Carpenter '22

spring emergence weather report

After a cold winter in Michigan, signs of Spring’s emergence are already showing. Trees are budding as flowers prepare to bloom and the state’s flora begins the transitional process of becoming green and lush. However, is there anything that makes this Spring different from normal? The remnants of La Niña, a weather pattern characterized by strong winds that push warm water to other continents, have left a slight mark on the United States. As a result of this weather event, Spring will be warmer and wetter than usual. This will likely lead to the flourishing of plants befores Summer eventually arrives.

-Jack Hughes '22

Winter sports pep rally

Last Monday we had our winter sports pep rally, where we recognized our winter sports athletes, played games, and basically had a little fun with the other students.

The assembly started with the band playing some songs and Mr. Hutchins welcomed all of us. After the welcoming performance all the varsity teams played balloon races, the wrestling team won the competition. Eventually, Mr. Steele announced all the winter sports athletes and also introduced the new superintendent. Next, we played tug-of-war where the juniors ended up being the winners after winning against the freshman and the seniors. We also played musical chairs where Kate Crandall and Isaac Myles had a really hard competition to get that last chair. We also watched the Pennfield dance team perform one of their choreographed dances. After a long two years, we officially had our first indoor pep assembly. It felt good to be back in our gym.

-Judit Asensio Fernandez '24

Congratulations Academic Top 10

Valedictorian - Alexander Comai, Salutatorian - Kylie Yoder

Rest of the Top Ten (Alphabetically) Alexander Briggs, Kaylynn Budreau, Abigail Byrd, Trinity Densborn, Mason Fausey, Levi Harris, Jack Hughes, and Savannah Rahn.

chick-fil-a all the way

It’s the talk of the town, it’s the word on the street. Chick-Fil-A Battle Creek just can’t be beat. That’s right, an exciting restaurant installation has arrived in Battle Creek in the form of a new Chick-Fil-A. The store officially opened on February 24 and has been maddeningly busy ever since then. With 1200 applications to consider, CFA hired 200 brand new employees to run the store with maximum efficiency. The first few weeks have actually been quite smooth, all things considered. As expected, everybody is trying to get a piece of Chick-Fil-A so the line is always packed. However, there are some extra busy peak hours that one should avoid if one wants to avoid a long line. For instance, one of the busiest hours of the day is right before closing: between 8 and 9. Everything is fresh as all food items are prepared in the store. Speaking of which, the brand new store is actually one of the most technologically advanced locations in the country. With new equipment and a compact kitchen, everything is made to order and food is sent out relatively quickly considering all of the people that show up to eat. All in all, Chick-Fil-A is definitely a great addition to Battle Creek. Be sure to stop by and check it out, it’s worth the wait.

-Jack Hughes '22

attention phs students: Student Advisory Council

Pennfield Schools Superintendent, Stephanie Lemmer is currently accepting applications for openings on her Student Advisory Council that will be co-facilitated by the Pennfield Board of Education Student Representative, Nadalie Pratt. The Council is comprised of ninth through twelfth-grade students selected through an application process. At this time, there are currently 4 vacancies in each grade level 9-12.

Students who wish to apply for the council should complete an application packet through google forms by March 18, 2022

“It is extremely important that we reach out to our students to get their input on what we are doing right and what we can improve,” said Lemmer. “I am looking forward to working with the student advisory council and I expect this year to be a productive experience for students to share their voice. I enjoy working with students and I look forward to meeting with them this year.”

The Student Advisory Council will meet with Superintendent Lemmer and the Board of Education Student Representative Nadalie Pratt throughout the school year to discuss how decisions made are affecting students across the district. Student members will serve as advisors and act as liaisons between their class and the administration.

The Application can be accessed on the website or by contacting Nadalie Pratt at

Mrs. Rzepka's Culinary students create tasty art!

PHS 2022 winter carnival King and Queen

Congratulations to Kayden Babcock and Kylie Crandall!

congratulations 2022 winter carnival court

New Superintendent: Mrs. Lemmer

A new superintendent has joined the Pennfield family! Mrs. Lemmer officially started as Superintendent of Pennfield Schools within the last couple of weeks. Mrs. Lemmer is bringing along her husband of 15 years, three sons, two dogs, and a cat, to Battle Creek from Centreville. While Mrs. Lemmer is extremely dedicated to her work, she insists that “being a mom is the accomplishment I am most proud of.” In her professional career, Mrs. Lemmer has worked as a middle school social studies and reading teacher, 4th-grade teacher, elementary principal, and so much more. Mrs. Lemmer has made it clear that one of her main goals in her new position is “to support and impact staff positively to make school the best experience it can be for ALL kids!” But why Pennfield? Mrs. Lemmer explained that Pennfield caught her eye because of all the change Pennfield has endured in such a short time, and it made her see that we as a community are “resilient and superheroes” in her eyes.

We can expect to see Mrs. Lemmer in our classrooms and hallways, at events, and she made it clear that she loves to be invited to events that may not be known to her. Mrs. Lemmer loves kids and people in general and loves to get feedback on what she can better do to support the people around her. But most importantly, “I am KID FOCUSED when I make decisions.” Mrs. Lemmer is devoting her career to making decisions for the students, in order to make us more successful, and doesn’t care to bring politics or other outside swaying factors into any major decisions. As mentioned before, Mrs. Lemmer is not afraid to be held accountable by others, so if you ever have any questions about a decision that was made, don’t be afraid to reach out and have a respectful conversation with her, in hopes to make Pennfield better. If you see Mrs. Lemmer around, make sure to give her a big welcome to the Pennfield community!

-Dustin Fleming ‘22


Blood Drive

On the 28th of January, the annual blood drive was held in our gym, where a lot of students, staff, and people from Pennfield and the community donated their blood for good causes. We talked to some of the volunteers like Mackenzie Murphy who said “I volunteered because I was asked and I wanted to help the community!” Kylie Crandall told us that she is one of the high school’s four coordinators for the Red Cross blood drives, but that she couldn't give blood because she had a basketball game to play that night. Another volunteer was Carter Wong who said that the best part of volunteering is “talking to the community that comes to donate and listening to their stories” and also that he donated blood that day.

We also interviewed some of the donors that day like the exchange student Anna Grue who said that she is planning on giving blood again in April. Madi Collins told us “I am giving blood because my blood is universal and I want to help people.” Finally, we also talked to Tarren Todd and Owen Lewis who both agreed that the reason they donated was to help people in need.

So if you don't have anything better to do that day don't forget to sign up to donate blood in April!

-Judit Asensio ‘24


Nasko cleland

Nasko Cleland discusses the wrestling season.

-Jack Hughes '22

hat/hoods policy

Starting on January 3rd, a new policy about hats and hoods in the building was enforced. From then on, no hats with a brim or hoods could be worn inside of the building.

Overall, the most important part of this policy is safety. Mr. Goggins and Officer Saulsberry made sure to explain how these hats and hoods made it hard to see the person's face, especially on a security camera which could make it hard to clear up investigations into incidents at the school. Mr. Goggins talked about the suspicion that this was a fashion issue saying, “it really was a security issue, kids think this is some kind of fashion concern or something, it's a security issue.” The repercussions for not following policies are a few reminders, but if the student refuses to remove the hat/hood it will end up in a suspension. Mr. Goggins likes that the new rule puts us more in line with other schools across the country as they’ve had this policy for much longer. Officer Saulsberry mentioned, “I’m just thankful how everyone went along with it for the most part and that most students cooperated with it, and we really appreciate that.”

-Shane Carpenter '23

Transportation issues

Due to the worldwide Covid-19 pandemic, all jobs have suffered. Students and adults have had to be flexible with the changes of this new age, especially bus drivers. It’s happened in several districts, and for years before this pandemic: a bus driver shortage. Due to quarantine, buses have had to blend routes or call off the transportation altogether - leaving several students stranded and searching for a ride.

Before becoming a driver, school bus drivers must undergo several vetting processes to determine who is road-ready for students. The Dean of Transportation says, “It has been a struggle to get new drivers because of all the work they have to put in… we are trying very hard to get new drivers in here and trained.” Even though they have advertised job openings in the paper, billboards, and elsewhere; they can’t seem to find enough people to fill the slots. Even after raising the pay, it's still a challenge to train every single driver. They must pass a series of tests and multiple drives before becoming official. “If they pass then they have to take another class for 3 days to receive their green card that they must carry while driving,” The Dean writes.

After the pandemic, will this issue resolve itself? The bus driver shortage isn’t a new obstacle that schools are facing. The people who are willing to spend time with the community and help our kids are minimal, and without the help of others, everyone will see the effects. Transportation is a very important service that is offered, and it isn’t easy. Be grateful for your bus drivers, their job is harder than it looks.

-Maddison Hoshaw '22

School ID

Given to students as freshmen, then are lost, broken, sometimes used, and eventually need to be replaced. Many students recently found themselves locked out of the school because their school ID was either not with them, or they were unable to use them. Many PHS students were surprised to encounter the locked doors when they arrived at school. In response to recent school shootings and lockdowns in our own building, the doors are now going to be locked and require a school ID to enter. Students may wonder, why not just ring the doorbell? What they might not think about is that every time the doorbell is rung, someone inside has to take time out of their day to buzz students in. One person who takes on the task of watching the doors is Mrs. Fox. She believes that using a school ID is a quick way for students to get into the school and sometimes “the Main Office is not able to quickly answer the bell and it allows students to enter the school without waiting for a secretary to unlock the door.” Mrs. Fox and Mr. Goggins agree that students should bring their school IDs daily to keep track of them and get into the habit of being responsible and using them every day. Mrs. Fox hopes students know that if your ID does not work and will not unlock the door, you should come to see Mrs. Funk and she will fix it because normally it is a small issue. Something else to never forget is that if you ever need a replacement ID, it is only $5. Also, you should carry your school ID with you always even if you are not coming to school. Many places around town will sometimes give discounts to students when a school ID is shown. So always remember, bring your ID to school to get into the building, use it to get into sporting events, and carry it around town as a form of identification, and you never know, you could get a student discount from any local businesses around!

-Dustin Fleming & Jayla Eckman '22

Judit's journey to florida

Since it was Thanksgiving break my host family decided that a good place to spend this holiday was in Florida. So with a couple of friends and with our suitcases packed we start our 20 hours car ride to the sunshine state.

First of all, after 10 hours of driving, we stopped to spend the night at Chattanooga, Tennessee. A beautiful city with a lot of things to do and a huge river that crosses the city. The next day we started our way again to Bradenton, Florida. When we arrived we went to the beach to see the sunset and eat ice cream, and it really felt like I was back in Spain during summer with that warm weather. A couple of days later we drove for an hour to Treasure Island where we saw a sandcastle contest and the most beautiful sunset ever.

Later on Thursday, we of course celebrated Thanksgiving. I was excited about it since it was my first Thanksgiving ever. I really liked all the new things that I tried but my favorite was the turkey. That same day we went kayaking in the river. It was really cool since we were able to see the sunset from the river.

Finally, on the last day we went to see the alligators in a zoo, and it was such a cool experience since we were able to hold a little one.

-Judit Asensio '24

Helis kiis: estonia presentation

Pennfield is very lucky to have the opportunity to host foreign exchange students for the school year. Students come from all over the world, but one of our foreign exchange students this year comes from the country of Estonia. Helis Kiis was kind enough to give a presentation to the 4th hour psychology students, and let them experience just a little bit of where she calls home. She shared traditions, cultural dances, and everything that she loves about Estonia. Helis was very excited to share a piece of her life with us. “I’m very passionate about my culture and I love sharing it with others.” Helis shared that giving her presentation didn’t make her homesick but she felt very proud and happy that people were open and ready to hear about it. However, Helis did feel a little homesick when she was “putting together the presentation because [she] had to really think about [her] home country.”

Helis also encourages everyone to try an exchange year if you are the type of person who will work hard and be open to learning about new cultures. It does take quite a bit of adjusting and Helis herself is still trying to completely adjust to life here in America but explained that it is hard because it is very different from what she is used to. Next time you get the opportunity to ask a foreign exchange student a question or ask about their home, take it! You may learn something very interesting, and you could get the experience of learning a whole new culture.

-Dustin Fleming '22

blood drive

Pennfield High School has been hosting a blood drive for decades. That is quite a long time. Donating blood is one of the best ways to give back to the community. In fact, donating blood can save lives. Senior Alexis McCullin says she chooses to donate blood because she “has extra that some people need.” She donates “whenever she can” because healthy blood is always a much-needed resource to help other people. In terms of why blood donations help the community, she says, “Some people need transfusions and if I have the blood that they need then I can be helpful.” Blood has the power to save lives. Blood donations are incredibly important. Alexis says, “People should donate because they should help other people. Your blood will replenish itself, so why not donate?”

-Jack Hughes '22

Food drive

During this holiday season, it is important to give thanks and to appreciate your loved ones. Christmas time is upon us and along with Christmas break comes the new year. However, there are a number of families who are available to receive benefits of toiletries, food, and other household items each year. Thanks to our amazing community, families in need have the opportunity to get help, and here's how.

The Lions Club Food Drive is a national volunteer program that empowers communities and gives back to its people. The school district decides which families in their township need help during this wintertime, and then the Lions Club provides. They depend on donations and school food drives to supply the needs of the people. After the benefits are passed out, any excess items are distributed among the Pennfield buildings.

Furthermore, students are advised to bring items such as canned foods, packaged pastas, soap and/or toothbrushes and toothpaste. Although most people donate out of the kindness of their heart, the school has a bonus system to reward those for helping out. Such rewards have become a class rivalry between the grades and hours, for example; on December 10th if your class has donated at least $100 at the end of the week, everyone in your class will be granted 2 tardy passes for the second semester.

Again on Tuesday, December 14th, the top third and fifth hour to reach a donation goal will achieve donuts and a pizza party. These are only some of the bonuses the school has to provide for your help.

Remember to thank the Lions Club Food Drive and volunteers for their help this holiday season. Together, our school can help the community and give back to those who’ve helped us.

-Maddison Hoshaw '22

Pennfield's new bond

Voting took place on November 2nd as school districts urged taxpayers to vote in favor of the new school bond. With 1,027 votes “yes,” all Pennfield School buildings will be getting a facelift. The district was granted a $30 million bond for updates and installations. The approved measure consisted of $11 million towards Pennfield Middle, $9 million for Dunlap Elementary, along with over $4.8 million towards the High School's new parking lot, bleachers, track, and other improvements. School officials state that taxpayers will not have to pay more in taxes since the bond features a zero mill net increase. “It’s important that our community supports this bond because if not, the schools are going to suffer from it.” States Interim Superintendent, Don Myers.

Excitingly, all new furniture will be installed in every building, along with an updated heating and cooling system. North Penn and Purdy will be featuring a total of 6 new classrooms altogether. New blacktop will be paved to fix the parking lots, along with new lighting systems which will be more efficient. Dunlap Elementary will be getting new everything: floors, ceilings, roofs, lockers, student devices, doors, and windows. Pennfield Middle School will be incorporating more accessible bathrooms for students in need, along with new flooring. Furthermore, the High School will be seeing new improvements as well, most consisting of reconstruction towards the athletic complex.

-Maddison Hoshaw ‘22

Morning View at pennfield

PHS marching band presents 2021 beatles showcase

CONGRATULATIONs to the class of 2022 on your win!

Powderpuff Football

Last Tuesday, the 19th of October the annual powder puff football game between juniors and seniors took place on the football field. It was a fun game where both grades competed to be the final winner. Sadly the hours of practice of the juniors were not enough to beat the seniors but still they played really well for being the first time for some of them ever playing football.

We talked to some of the coaches of both teams like Konner Hess who told us that the best part of powderpuff is being an offense coach, making plays for the game and getting excited when someone makes a good play. He said that the final minute was the most intense thing in his life and that if they had 2 more minutes the score would have changed drastically. We also talked to the junior defensive coach, Caleb Smith who said that he signed up to be the coach because he thought it was going to be fun and also that the best part was introducing football to people that never had played before. He also said that he definitely wants to coach next year again and that the worst part was losing.

And finally we talked to Ty Townsend, the seniors coach who said that he decided to coach because he loves football and he wanted to try coaching this time. He also told us that the best part was putting plays together and the worst was that they only had 2 practices unlike the juniors who had a few more. Finally, Ty said that they should have scored more points and that he was a little bit disappointed.

-Judit Asensio '24

What our teachers think about masks

Masking is a subject that the students of Pennfield High School are sure to be familiar with. The student body certainly has its own not-so-private opinions about masking up during school; however, what are the teachers’ thoughts on this subject?

When asked whether he wears a mask in his glorious realm that is more commonly known as a classroom, Mr. Lessnau responded with a resounding “yes”! “ I do wear a mask at school. At the end of the day, I don’t personally think that it’s that much of an ask. It’s a small thing that I can do to protect the student population and to protect my family...It is a small thing I can do to keep my students safe and healthy and in the school because I make contact with so many people in the day,” states Mr. Lessnau. However, masks are uncomfortable, right? Well, to Mr. Lessnau, that is a small matter when it comes to the safety of others, especially when masking is a well-known measure that prevents the spread of Covid. “It’s not that I think wearing a mask is the most comfortable thing, but after last year, I’ve learned how to deal with it for the day. Here we are a year and a half into the pandemic; it’s the thing that has been revealed to be one of the most effective mitigation strategies,” he says. This leads to the question: should all students and staff be required to wear masks during school? Mr. Lessnau has an answer to this question, “Yes, because I have found that one of the best things that I can do throughout this entire pandemic is to follow the local health department’s guidelines and suggestions and to follow the CDC’s guidelines and suggestions, and universal masking is a recommendation under both those entities.” He even uses some logical retrospection into how last school year flowed to determine whether masking would be a good idea this year. “I also look at the fact that last year we had universal masking in the second semester when we were in person...last year, no vaccine was available, but we were fully masked and we never shut down. Right now, the vaccine is available, but we’re not masked and we had to shut down the building. [Masking] is a small thing that we can all do to stay in person.”

Mrs. Podolan agrees upon this subject by saying, “Yes, absolutely I wear a mask; 100 percent I wear a mask. Why? Well, I think about, why not? I think it makes people feel safe.” Mrs. Podolan reveals that masking is not only about protecting yourself, but protecting the health of others. She says, “I sort of think about how my life experiences with cancer have kind of shaken me and have let me see that kids in my classroom also have sick parents. So these kids are going home to family members with cancer and they are coming to school with masks on and they are coming to school trying to do the best they can with their education, but we’re too busy arguing about masks.” Arguably, the most important aspect of wearing a mask is preventing the spread of Covid through families via students. Masking is truly a selfless act with the aim of protecting others throughout the pandemic. In reference to the pandemic and virtual school, Mrs. Podolan says, “This affects a lot of people...Some kids tell me stories about how hard school is virtually. I just know how hard life is for so many people right now that I don’t understand why people don’t just wear their masks. I don’t want people to go home, this whole last week [of virtual school] could have been solved if we had just worn masks.”

-Jack Hughes '22

Mr. Lessnau

Mrs. Podolan

Mrs. Podolan

Students wearing Masks?

Wearing masks is a subject that might be considered controversial at Pennfield, but like everything else there is a discussion to be had about it. At a school with people of many different backgrounds and diverse insight into things like this, we wanted to hear what some students had to say.

Junior Davis Kelly likes the idea of requiring students to wear masks. He feels that we have had too many quarantines and definitely too many positive cases. He does say that it may be inconvenient to wear them but that we should do it because it helps keep more people safe than it affects. He does want to go back to no masks after the numbers are down, but does believe they are best for us right now.

Sophomore Trent Garrison feels we should have the choice of what we want to wear. He believes that if people are okay with the risk of getting infected, then they should get the choice. He isn’t opposed to kids wearing them in school, but he specifies that it should be a choice. He also talked about how if they enforced masks, many people would wear them wrong, which he doesn’t think solves the problem at all.

-Shane Carpenter '23

PHS 2021 Homecoming King and Queen

Congratulations Dustin Fleming and Andrea Bautista!

Congratulations 2021 Homecoming Court

Homecoming SPirit Week!

Look through the pictures to see if you see you or any of your friends!

YMCA gaming room

At Pennfield High School, many kids are now in the workforce. Many students have jobs in the fast-food industry or something similar, but some teenagers take a different route. Some of these include Reece Chapman and Alex Briggs, who got chosen for an exciting opportunity at the YMCA.

Reece and Alex around 2 years ago were tasked with making a gaming room for the YMCA youth program. They got a room in the Y and instantly got to work, ordering consoles, gaming parts, controllers, etc. The project was supposed to be done way earlier, but because of COVID, their project has just wrapped up recently. Along with the actual parts of the gaming equipment they also had to paint the room, then get the equipment like couches, desks, chairs, etc. They both like their job a lot because they play video games. Being able to go to work and help set up stuff like this is exciting for both of them.

The room is now complete and almost ready to be used, so if you enjoy playing video games you can visit the YMCA and see the accomplishments of our fellow Pennfield students!

-Shane Carpenter '23

Fellowship of christian athletes

As the new school year is underway many school clubs and groups have begun to have meetings. Fellowship of Christian Athletes is one of those groups. FCA is open to all students during both first and second lunch. “So, FCA is a lunch club that I and a gentleman named Brian Spitters host where we invite students to come to the choir room where we hang out, have food, and talk about Jesus,” said Preston Hoxworth who is one of the youth pastors that come out to the school every Tuesday. He, and Brian Spitters, youth pastor at North Ave Church of God, encourage everyone to stop in and see what it’s all about.

-Jack Hughes & Madi Wollston '22

Meet The Exchange Students

-Judit Asensio '24

Judit Asensio

Hi, I'm Judit, a sophomore from Barcelona, Spain who is now part of the high school newspaper staff. I have always wanted to do an exchange year because I wanted to learn American culture and go to an American high school. Something that surprised me a lot is that it is like being in a movie, it seems that we are in High School Musical. The thing that I like the most about Pennfield is the school spirit, like the games, the days that we wear school colors, and the cheerleading team for sure. Finally, some of my favorite things to do are cheerleading, travel, and skiing, and the best thing I've tried here is cookie dough, but I miss the Spanish food like “tortilla de patatas.”

Anna Grue

Anna Grue is a junior from Kolding, Denmark, who loves dogs and playing soccer. She explained that she always wanted to do an exchange year in the USA because she wanted to learn English and also live the “American life.” Anna said that she really likes how people in Pennfield are so kind and open minded and also the fact that it is a small community.

Jose Gonzalez

Jose Gonzalez (Pepo) is a junior from Madrid, Spain. Jose plays soccer and loves high school sports here in the USA. Another thing he likes about Pennfield is that teachers here always value your effort and have such a great attitude. Jose said that something that surprised him is the lockers. He also told us that he was encouraged to do an exchange year by his dad and that he misses the food, like Jamón, from Spain.

SOphie Klemm

Sophie is a junior from Hamburg, Germany, who came here to learn American culture, learn English, and to meet new people. Sophie told us that she likes the fact that people in Pennfield are so friendly and the school is so big, like in the movies. Sophie likes cross country, track and loves spending time with friends and family. She also explained that she misses German food, specifically ZimtFranz, a special type of cinnamon roll.

Julius Wettschereck

Julius is a senior from Gottingen, Germany who came to the USA to meet new people and learn about American culture. Julius explained that the thing he likes the most about Pennfield is the sports, but also that it is not a big school so it's easy to meet new people. He also said that he plays football but also loves soccer and basketball and that he misses the typical holiday of Germany called Oktoberfest.


Vinicius is a junior from Rio De Janeiro, Brazil that plays basketball and also football. He likes that in Pennfield there are a lot of nice people and that it is a great school. Also, Vinicius loves cooking and he told us that he misses his dog and family in Brazil and his favorite restaurant in Michigan is Popeyes. Finally, when we asked why he wanted to do an exchange year he said that it was because he thinks it is better than Brazil.

Helis Kiis

Helis Kiis is a senior from Estonia. The thing that Helis likes most about the United States is that there are friendly people and there are so many choices. Helis is surprised about having different people in her classes instead of staying with one group all day. Helis participates in track and field and plays the violin for fun and she also did drama club in Estonia. Helis misses her mom’s cooking and all of her friends. Helis says she can not find black bread here in the USA. Helis's favorite restaurant is Lux Cafe so far.

Gilem Sendin

Gilem is a junior. Gilem is originally from Bilbao, Spain. Gilem's favorite part of the USA is all of the different parts. He thinks that Pennfield is a great school and that he loves the rules and all the teachers. He likes hanging out with friends and family and he loves to play soccer. He misses the food from home and being close to the sea. His favorite Restaurant is Fazolis. He likes learning about other cultures, and traits.


Philip is a junior from Berlin, Germany who came to the USA to improve his English level. Philp told us that Pennfield is so different compared to the German high school and it surprised him that we have the same class every day. Also he told us that he loves video games and that the thing that he most likes from the USA is a show of old cars that he went with his host family to see. Philip also told us that he misses German food but that he loves a Mexican restaurant he tried here.

Senior Parking Spots

-Mikayla Bennett '24 & Carly Robbins '23

Sydney Harper chose something that was simple and cute that she would be able to look at and never get tired of. Harper said the hardest part was being in the sun and getting drained quickly and getting dehydrated. If she could change anything about her parking spot, she would choose, “to not have so many cracks in the space so it’d be easier to paint.”

Sam Bradley based his parking spot off of Scar from the Lion King. He chose Scar because he loves The Lion King, Scar was his favorite character, and he loves his song: “Be Prepared.” It took Sam 2.5 to 3 days to completely finish his parking spot.

Madison Bommersbach put a big smiley face with bright colors on her parking spot to spread positivity. She said that it took her roughly 6 hours and that the hardest part was being out in the heat for so long. Madison quoted, “I'm very pleased with how it turned out, but it took a lot of patience and ibuprofen.”

Hero Workouts

"In the days leading up to the 20th Anniversary of September 11th, I wanted to show my students that they can show courage, strength, and resilience in their everyday life just as those did on 9/11. September 11, 2001 was a day in history we as Americans should never forget, but it was how September 12th showed how amazing our country was by coming together as Americans. My students did hero workouts all week to honor those first responders, military members, and courageous men and women on the day that changed everyday life as we know it." - Ms. Collins