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Public Bussing

And the problems it poses students

Carys Vance, 10/24/23, 11:59pm

       In a previous issue of The Cascade there was an article published detailing the negatives of the Seattle Public School’s transit systems. Since said article, there have been several new developments regarding Seattle Public School’s buses. In this article, an Ingraham student will share their experiences and opinions on these developments. 

 

       In an attempt to get more bus routes for middle and elementary schoolers, Seattle Public Schools cancelled all school buses for high school students. While prioritizing the younger kids in the district is an approach many will respect, it has caused a new wave of issues for high school students who cannot drive themselves. The district has attempted to solve this issue by offering free Orca Cards to all high school students. This does present students with the opportunity to learn the ins and outs of public transport in Seattle, which they can use for years to come. However, not all students taking the city bus are responding positively to this approach. Several students are forced to take multiple buses if they want to get to school, with transfers in high crime areas. There are countless examples of inappropriate conduct on public buses, which students feel puts them in dangerous situations. 

       For example, one Ingraham student recounts their experience riding the bus to school two years ago. “On this specific day I got on the bus with one of my friends. As we approached an intersection on Aurora, the bus stopped to let on another passenger. This passenger                                                                                                 was clearly disoriented, and possibly under the influence different substances.                                                                                                 They had some sort of bottle in a paper bag. They lied down on the seats and                                                                                                 drank from the bottle.” The bus driver proceeded to ask the passenger to remove                                                                                             themselves from the bus, stopping on the other side of the Aurora intersection.                                                                                               The passenger quickly became aggravated with the other passengers and the                                                                                                 bus driver because of this. “They yelled at the whole bus for a few minutes, before                                                                                           getting up to leave. Right before exiting the bus, they turned around and threw the                                                                                           bottle at my group of friends. This revealed to us it was white wine that they were                                                                                             drinking.” This is just one of many student experiences on the bus that leave them                                                                                           feeling unsafe but stuck taking the bus where they encountered these uncomfortable and dangerous situations.    

        These situations of endangerment, uncomfortable situations and unsafe conduct on public buses means public transit is not something many students are yearning to utilize. This can cause students to participate in complicated carpools, working parents to be late to their jobs, and overall, a large amount of inconvenience for everyone. 

The student interviewed earlier in the article proposes a solution, saying, “SPS needs to provide more transportation for students who live in bus ‘dead zones’ (referring to locations in the city where there are not many public busses, and a transfer is required for reaching most places in the city). This is also the responsibility of the city. Seattle needs to improve their city buses as well, with increased routes, stricter protocol about incidents on the city buses, and better employee screening.” 

 

       Will Seattle Public Schools respond to this student, and many others, complaints about the busing situation in the district? Only time will tell.   

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The Urbanist

Beans: A Journey

Beans

Ella Eakin, 10/24/23, 11:50pm

        Beans: the magical fruit. A staple in many houses, the subject of nostalgic

rhymes, an overall wonder of a food. A bean is defined as “an edible seed, typically

kidney-shaped, growing in longpods  on certain leguminous plants.” Although this

definition seems pretty solid, what really are beans? How do people actually feel

about them? According to the Ontario Bean Growers, there are over 400 different

types of beans in the world. But which is the best? 

       

       Maroon-speckled pinto beans are the most popular beans in the United States.

This makes sense because people love their pintos. For example, Amanda McArthur, a writer for the never-before-heard-of-website, Sweety High, ranked the pinto beans at Chipotle a modest 18th best (out of 19 ingredients.) McArthur clearly doesn’t know what she’s talking about. Pintos are also easy to prepare in a pinch, affordable, and one of the five heart-healthy beans. Other heart-healthy beans include black beans, chickpeas, navy beans, and soybeans.  

 

       According to Everyday Health, black beans are rich in fiber and low in calories. They help keep your immune system healthy and can be prepared in various delicious ways. One way is to simply pour some out of a can onto a plate. Or, if you’re feeling particularly fancy, you can add in bay leaves to amplify the taste, throw in some ground cumin because - according to the Cookie and Kate cooking website - they simply go perfect(!) together, or even sprinkle some red pepper flakes on top to spice it up and add some heat. Also, Amanda McArthur suggests that if you’re at Chipotle and have “got to do beans,” she recommends black beans over pinto. 

 

       Chickpeas are “great for vegetarians and vegans,” and practically bursting with vitamins and minerals, Cleveland Clinic states. They can drastically promote cardiovascular health with their low sodium content and good source of polyunsaturated fats. Also, for those who cannot have gluten, chickpeas are a great option because they are gluten-free and are so full of nutrients. One way to serve is to simply stick them into your favorite sandwich, just smash them in there, and it’ll be a masterpiece. Chickpeas are very commonly incorporated into soup, pasta, and rice dishes. 

 

Let’s have beans at every meal. 

 

       Many types of beans are eaten all around the world in many types of different tasty dishes. Many people are starting to incorporate them more and more into their daily diets. They are healthy. Join the movement. Consume them. 

                                                                                         

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SAD

How does it affect IHS Students?

Parker Miceli, 10/24/23, 11:58pm

       As the euphoric buzz of the start of school wears off, we begin to lose some energy. Especially as winter nears, a phenomenon known as SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) begins to manifest. SAD is a “type of depression that’s related to changes in seasons” (Mayo Clinic). According to the Mayo Clinic, some major symptoms include decreased energy, sleeping too much, difficulty concentrating, and feeling slow. In Seattle, it is estimated that ten to thirty percent of the population experiences some symptoms of SAD while in Florida, less than two percent of the population experiences SAD (University of Washington). SAD prevalence also varies by gender. Women are two to nine times more likely to experience SAD. Seattle is more vulnerable due to our climate, and that makes it particularly valuable to explore this topic.

       

       

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

       SAD affects the Ingraham Student Body more than people may realize. Many students who experience symptoms of SAD find it more difficult to participate in school. When asked how SAD affects their ability to do schoolwork, one IHS student responded, “You feel less productive and have less energy to be productive.” Other meaningful student accounts state that they are “getting too much sleep,” and another says they don’t have “motivation to do anything.” This is an issue that many students face. I personally deal with SAD every winter. It can be a serious obstacle. It makes keeping up with schoolwork and my social life exhausting. SAD also affects teachers. Not only is it possible for them to have it, but their students who do have it, may fall behind.

 

       SAD frequently coincides with fall and winter as “serotonin production increases with luminosity,” (Kathryn A. Roecklein and Kelly J. Rohan). Serotonin is a chemical that affects your mood among other things. There are numerous theories about what specifically causes SAD, and it is hard to pinpoint which of them are true. There are treatments for SAD that are accessible. According to the United Kingdom National Health Service, light therapy, which involves sitting in front of a light box that bathes you in light to mimic sunlight, is the most effective treatment. You can also take advantage of the licensed therapists here at Ingraham.

 

       While the stigma of SAD is low, it is easily dismissed. “The Winter Blues offers many Seattleites a comfortable explanation for their symptoms” (University of Washington). Dismissing such a phenomenon can keep you from receiving treatment and improving your disposition. If symptoms of SAD begin to manifest, there is no harm in attempting to treat it. We should think about having at least one light box at school so people can recharge. This economical device has the potential to improve the quality of life of many students.

 

       As a school, we need to look out for each other and understand that SAD is everywhere. Being aware of SAD and having patience with our peers will help to make our school environment safer and more enjoyable.

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Light Therapy Box

Credit: NYT

Five Minute Break Update

Students Opinions

Alden Whitlow, 11/14/23, 8:54pm

       There are many ways that this article could start, countless hooks that could draw in the reader. For example: “As you sit in fourth period, watching the freshman pour into the room, late from illegally going off campus to chick-fil-a, you check the time…” Or “Ingraham wants to stop congregating in the hall, yet they’ve allowed it to continue with the extra 5-minute break…” Or even, “Did you know that there is a new 5-minute break on Wednesdays, and that there isn’t one after fifth period…” And yet that’s not how this article will start, with so many reasons or possibilities of why this 5-minute break was added and why some believe it should be removed, there is only one way to start this article: 

 

        Four minutes. That is how long on average it takes someone to walk from the three hundred building to Maestre Andy’s room upstairs of one of the new add-on buildings. Data was gathered from three different time periods, one during the 5-minute break, one during lunch, and one during passing period. And yet all the times averaged out to four minutes. So, what does this small, yet still significant, piece of data prove. Passing period is a great length. If you don't stop and talk with friends you can get from period to period without having to worry about time. Sure, maybe using the bathroom will be hard, but your teachers won't be as mad at you for being late. Ever since middle school, teachers have tried to cement it into our brains that talking to your friends during passing periods will lead to being late. Yet we still do it, all of us 

                          

       It’s not the talking to friends that teachers hate, it’s the congregating, the loitering. Yet what does this 5-minute break create? While walking through the halls at lunch, Ingraham has easy navigation routes. Before school, the same thing. Even during the 15-minute break, everyone has found their corner to sit by which leaves plenty of room to roam. Then, as you try to get to class or wherever you’re going throughout the 5-minute break, the groups halt you. The congregation begins, and it spreads. In front of the vending machine, in the entrance from the 200s building, in front of classroom doors. People know that they do not have much time to free roam so they quickly find who they can and then stop and talk. Done. Grouped. Hallway. No room. 

       

       If the administration was to get rid of the break, the next question would be where to put it. You can’t just leave 5 minutes empty in the schedule. This is where a key factor comes into play, traffic. When the word traffic is mentioned in a school context, it can be interpreted in many ways. This can be from students slowly walking down the halls, blocking them off, and others having no way to pass, or from arrogant drivers as you walk to and from school. This can also be from drivers in general, rushing back to school from Starbucks.  Why not give them more time? There will be fewer students late to class, less missed tests, less “eh, why should I even show up for class?” Add the five-minute break onto the end of lunch, and these problems might just go away. 

                       Wednesday   

                 Period 1: 8:50 – 9:30

                 Period 2: 9:35 – 10:15

                 Period 3: 10:20 – 11:00

                 Lunch: 11:05 – 11:35

                 Period 4: 11:40 – 12:20

                 Advisory: 12:20 – 12:50

                 Break: 12:50 – 12:55

                 Period 5: 1:00 – 1:40

                 Period 6: 1:45 – 2:25

        Normal 

Period 1: 8:50 – 9:45

Period 2: 9:50 – 10:45

Break: 10:45 – 11:00

Period 3: 11:05 – 12:00

Lunch: 12:05 – 12:35

Period 4: 12:40 – 1:35

Period 5: 1:40 – 2:35

Break: 2:35 – 2:40  

Period 6: 2:45 – 3:40

Hoco 2023

Ella Eakin, 10/25/23, 12:00pm

       Ingraham’s homecoming this year was at the Pacific Science Center. Students were excited to see what the venue would bring, since it was different from previous venues, like the Magnuson Hangar. The dinosaur exhibit was unfortunately not open to students, but the planet area and butterfly room were open, and students were able to walk around them. The theme for the dance was western, naming it the “Homecoming Hoedown.” The number of cowboy hats present was very high and lots of western style looks were seen at the dance. This theme also inspired a few country songs to be played, attracting large crowds to the dance floor. 

 

       Students have a variety of opinions on the dance. When asked what they thought of the dance, one junior said that “it was fun to go into the butterfly room” but other than that, it had “horrible music” with a typical “tinny” sound. Another student said that she didn’t go to the dance at all because “all of the dances in the past were just kind of boring” so she didn’t want to go. Usually, our dances have little to no decorations, with a DJ and a designated dancing area. Anyone that’s been to one of Ingraham’s dances knows they aren’t anything like what is in the movies and it’s just a bunch of people all clustered together forming a mosh pit type scene. Because of the various areas you could go to at the venue this time, the dancing area was more calm than usual. Also, not everyone had a negative take on the dance. One student said how he thought that “the dance was chill, the music was nice, and the venue was lit” while another said they had a great time. One thing that has always been the situation at our dances is the absence of food and drinks. A sophomore who usually goes to the dances said she “felt like the experience would become increasingly more enjoyable with the addition of food and beverage” for the dance’s attendees. At the Pacific Science Center, there were only two water fountains open for all of the students to use, causing a long line and backup for a short sip of water in the 3 hours the dance went on. 

 

       One thing that came as a surprise this year was that Ingraham didn’t allow students from other schools to obtain guest passes for our homecoming dance this year. They were supposedly taken away because of bad behavior from the spring fling, but guest passes have been provided for all previous dances, so it came as a bit of a shock when it was unexpectedly announced that no guest passes would be allowed. One sophomore said how they “felt super annoyed when hoco banned guest passes” because they had “already asked a date from another school to the dance before no guest passes were announced,” meaning that they ended up not being able to go to homecoming because their date was banned from the dance altogether. Another student who wasn’t even planning on bringing anyone from outside of Ingraham simply says, “It was not a good decision.” Although it may have been because of the venue having more areas to go to, the dance still seemed to be less full than other dances have been in the past – maybe because of the absence of these passes.  

Blocked Websites

Kathleen Ultis and Ariana Kanze, 10/29/2023, 10:01pm

       Many students and teachers run into websites blocked by the school's computer filtering system daily. This includes websites used solely for educational purposes, news sources, and websites for class. Seattle Public Schools uses, Securly, a filtering service provider on the Wi-Fi network. Securly blocks websites based on content, however, the categories stated for the reason of blocking are consistently vague with many sites being blocked because of “Other adult content”. Securly offers schools the option of allowing Wi-Fi users to electronically request that a blocked website be reviewed, yet the school district has chosen to not enable this option. 

 

       We asked students for websites they had found. We were told that “The crash course videos on ‘Conflict in Israel and Palestine’ and some other Crash course world history videos on YouTube,” were blocked. This video was assigned for class so there is no reason for it to be blocked based on content as the Israel-Palestine conflict is a tenth-grade history topic.  

 

       Another student told us that “Several disability studies websites, as well as a video about the 504 sit-in and a documentary about the same topic. […] I could not find all the information I wanted to- it was specifically first-person accounts and oral histories that were blocked. The perspectives of able-bodied people were not blocked.” Here we can see the school’s filter interfering with student’s research projects and blocking important diverse history. It is crucial for students to be able to learn about perspectives different from theirs as well as their own history.   

 

       Additionally, the entirety of the Stranger Newspaper based in Seattle is blocked, although it is not clear why as the justification is “Other Adult Content”. When websites are labeled “Other Adult Content” it’s hard for students to know why the webpage is blocked. The category is vague enough to be able to be applied to anything.  

 

       The filter also inhibits teachers' ability to share resources with their students and teach their classes. According to an Ingraham history teacher: “I have found that many videos that contain content related to slavery or racism are blocked by the filter. This is challenging when these are very common topics when learning about U.S. History. As a teacher, these restrictions have made it more difficult to share class resources with students on Schoology. I have tried to request that various videos be unblocked, but I haven't had much success.” Not only does the filter impact students’ personal research projects, but their school projects as well.  

 

       The overzealousness of the filter inhibits student learning and teachers’ abilities to share educational content with their students. It also limits students creative thinking and personal engagement as it stops some further research into some topics. The school should definitely enable the button for students and teachers to report and challenge unrightfully blocked websites. 

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