The Weekly

West High School's Weekly Updates: Sept. 24th-Sept. 30th

Nic Stone, Author of Dear Martin, Visits West High

Dear Martin author Nic Stone visited West High on Tuesday, September 18, as a kickoff for the new diversity book club, These Books Are Lit. Stone met with students throughout the day under the library skylights to discuss her inspiration for writing a book that shines a light on contemporary topics such as police brutality and racial profiling. Teacher and student reactions to the visit were overwhelmingly positive. One reading strategies teacher remarked, “It was pretty overwhelming to see my kids respond to her the way they did. They instantly felt connected and empowered by her.” Among the student reflections was this: “I would say this is the best experience I have had through a library.” Stone’s appearance at West High was made possible by an Excellence Grant from the ICCSD Foundation. Full coverage of the day can be found on the West Side Story website.

The October title for These Books are Lit is Angie Thomas’s The Hate U Give, which follows the story of Starr Carter, an African-American girl who is drawn to activism after witnessing the shooting of her unarmed friend at the hands of a police officer. In November, the book club will focus on The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo. This powerful debut novel with an unforgettable voice focuses on Xiomara, a young Latina who finds her voice through slam poetry.

Donations are still being accepted to purchase books so that as many students as possible can read them. Please click on this link to donate and support this important initiative: Donors Choose page.

Math Teacher Jon Bach Recognized by Students

On Thursday, math teacher Jon Bach received a ICCSD District Shine award from Superintendent Murley. Mr. Bach was nominated by former students. One student wrote, "I believe Mr. Bach deserves this award because true educators leave their students with more than just the subjects they teach-they leave them with a lifelong belief in themselves where none had existed before." Congratulations, Mr. Bach.

WHS Events This Week

  1. Picture retake day is on Monday, Sept. 24th. Pick up a picture retake form in the Main Office.
  2. Girls Varsity Swimming & Diving vs Cedar Falls on Tuesday, Sept. 25th at Coralville REC at 6:00pm
  3. Boys Varsity Cross Country vs Multiple Schools on Tuesday, Sept. 25th at U of I Ashton Cross Country Course at 6:05pm (ICW Girls JV/V are not competing at this event)
  4. Varsity Volleyball vs Linn-Mar on Tuesday, Sept. 25th in the Main Gym at 7:00pm
  5. Most Likely To Succeed, a documentary film, will be shown to the public on Thursday, September 27, 6:30 pm.
  6. Dine Out for Education on Thursday, Sept. 27th at Multiple Local Businesses (click here for More information)
  7. Varsity Football vs Linn-Mar on Friday, Sept. 28th at Linn-Mar at 7:15pm
  8. Club West/Live Like Line Foundation Fundraiser on Saturday, Sept. 29th at the Found Farm: 4304 Maier Ave SW, Iowa City IA 52240 from 5:00pm-9:00pm
  9. Music Auxillary Car Wash on Saturday, Sept. 29th 9am-4pm
  • East Side Hy-Vee: 812 S 1st Ave/Muscatine Ave, Iowa City
  • UICCU: 825 Mormon Trek Blvd, Iowa City
  • UICCU: 585 W Penn St, North Liberty
  • Central State Bank: 805 22nd Ave, Coralville

College Visits are held in the Guidance Office-call (319) 688-1053 for more information

  • September 24th-Johns Hopkins University: 11:00am-11:30am
  • September 25th-Carleton College: 11:30am-12:00pm
  • September 26th-Quincy College: 10:00am-10:30am
  • September 27th-Simpson College: 9:30am-10:00am
  • September 28th-St. Olaf College: 12:00pm-12:30pm

Kid Captain, Otto Phelps, Entertains at Tailgate

After school on Friday, members of the West High School Dance Marathon (WHSDM) club introduced Otto Phelps to students and staff at a tailgate party. Otto was diagnosed with leukemia in 2017. WHSDM raises money to support children with cancer and the Stead Family Hospital. WHSDM is not associated with the UI Dance Marathon. Accompanying WHSDM were several businesses headed up by local radio station Z102.3. Businesses passed out food, drinks and other promotional items to students. After the tailgate, Otto was escorted to the football game where he helped the team to a 20-14 victory over Pleasant Valley.

West Side Story Newscast for September 21

Student Senate Selections Announced

Final selections were made for the West High Student Senate were announced this week by Student Senate President Jillian Baker. The following criteria was used to select from over 70 applications:

  1. Vision for West High, as evidenced by responses to application essay prompts. Particularly, we were interested in seeing that individuals showed deep reflection for the problems facing West and had unique vision for fixing those problems.
  2. Experience, as evidenced by previous engagement with improvement to the West High community. This was often in the form of leadership in other student organizations, previous Senate experience, and the like.
  3. Professionalism, as evidenced by investment in presenting clear, complete, and detailed responses to the prompts.

The following individuals represent the 2018-19 Student Senate.

Seniors: Jake Greenlee, Jon Li, Frances Dai, Anna Brown, George Liu, Jacqueline Selemani, Grace Heller, Jack Wenzel, Veronica Kharunda

Juniors: Nikul Patel, Daniel Song, Leah Rietz, Prisca Namutchibwe, Patrick Taylor, Sanmati Thangavel, Mami Selemani, Ayah ElGaddal, Salima Omari

Sophomores: Sara Bigaba, Maggie Huang, Marta Leira, Benji Zhang, Miriam Aguirre, Freeha Ahmed, Quincy Tate, Sara Baroncini, Brenda Gao, Viven Ho, Evan Heller, Margaret Liu, Annabel Hendrickson, Madeline Ephraim

Freshmen: Tony Wang, Miranda Feng, Aashika Gadkari, Advika Shah, Lojain Nasr, Tayyiba Muhammad
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Battle-tested Pat McCaffery ready to lead USA into 3-on-3 Youth Olympic Games

While topping cancer is undoubtedly his greatest accomplishment, McCaffery knows that as far as competing in sports goes, nothing beats an Olympic gold medal. Read the full story here.

AP Exam Registration

All students enrolled in an AP course and their parent/guardian should have already received communication regarding the ordering and payment of AP examinations. AP exams will still be proctored in May, but the ordering and payment deadline is now November 1st.

A timeline and step-by-step guide can be found here.

AP Exam dates can be found here.

With the help of AP teachers, students will access their CollegeBoard account and place orders for AP examinations here.

Students must then also submit payment either online here (preferred method) or in person via the Guidance Office. If your student receives free or reduced lunch, please have them see their counselor prior to submitting any form of payment.

If you have additional questions regarding AP examinations, ordering, and/or payment, please contact the Guidance Office at 688-1053.

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BPA Updates

West High Business Professionals of America is excited to announce membership growth by over 50% for this school year! Executive Board Jason Strunk, Maddy Luegering, Ryan Gamble, Morgan Hawkins, Conner Hopkins, and Kiah Martin welcomed the 87-strong membership to their first meeting Friday the 21st. The club is looking forward to the United Fall Leadership Conference in Des Moines October 21st-22nd. It's going to be another great year for West BPA! (Photo: Kiah, Morgan, and Maddy register 87 members for the kickoff meeting)

Show Choir Spirit Wear Store is Open

Fall weather is here and it's a great time to pick up some new spirit wear to display your West High Show Choir pride! Wear these items around school, in the community, and to show support for West High at show choir competitions!

The online store will be open until October 1. Items will be delivered to a show choir rehearsal in mid-October. Note - prices listed do not include sales tax and shipping, which are added at checkout.

Parents - if you would like to order items for holiday gifts, we can hold them back from distribution and you can pick them up at another time. Please send an email to this address to let us know and we will pull your items to hold.

Item descriptions:

We have added color choices and changed materials on some items. Pictures are shown in link above. See descriptions below, but please feel free to ask if you have questions:

  • Unisex short sleeved tri-blend t-shirts. Super soft, heathered look in charcoal and new emerald green
  • Unisex 3/4 sleeve tri-blend baseball shirt. Super soft in new gray and emerald green.
  • Unisex crewneck sweatshirt in black - new material - still incredibly soft but won't pill as much as the previous crewneck material.
  • Men's polo shirt in black - always a favorite, especially among our parent crew!
  • Unisex Sport Tek quarter zip in emerald green - a great layering piece, polyester
  • Men and Women's Charles River Heathered Fleece pullovers - knit fabric on the outside, cozy fleece on the inside. Men's comes in charcoal, with pocket on the sleeve. Women's comes in Jade green with front kangaroo pocket. Perfect piece for chilly fall days!

Ordering these items is certainly not required. If we meet a certain number of orders, West High Show Choir will receive a portion of the proceeds.

PSAT Registration Registration

The PSAT/NMSQT will be proctored at West High School on the morning of Wednesday, October 10th. The PSAT/NMSQT is a practice version of the SAT exam, and juniors can use their score to qualify for the National Merit Scholarship Program.

Registration for the PSAT begins on Monday, September 10th and runs through the end of September. High-achieving sophomores and all juniors are encouraged to take this exam. Sophomores will receive registration and test information within either AP European History or English 10 Honors. Juniors will receive a letter in the mail. If you have not received information by September 11th and/or have any questions regarding the PSAT, please contact the Guidance Office at 688-1053.

A new app for athletics

Students and parents have new software to view information about the school’s athletics, and a West High graduate helped make it possible. Read the full story here.

Support Our Schools and Dine Out for Education

Mark your calendar and #gethungryforeducation! The fall Dine Out for Education is on Thursday, September 27, 2018. All you have to do is dine out at one or more of our 41 participating restaurants and businesses on September 27 and they will donate 10% of their daily sales to the ICCSD Foundation. Take-out and delivery count! For more information, visit the ICCSD Foundation website at or take a look at links to partner restaurants’ online menus.

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West Side Story Online Edition

For all the latest WHS news, check the on-line edition of the award-winning school newspaper.

Bicycle Safety & Driver Etiquette Tips

The nice weather has allowed more students to bike to school. We ask students and all bike communters to be safe on the roads, and we encourage everyone to ride with a bike helmet. Here are some other safety tips and reminders:

  • Be predictable. Always ride in a straight line, as far to the right as safely possible, but remaining visible to drivers. Don’t swerve, and use hand signals if you’re slowing down or turning.
  • Get personal. Make eye contact with other drivers (in a non-creepy way) to ensure that they see you, and they’ll give you more respect on the road.
  • Watch for pedestrians. If using the sidewalk, give pedestrians the right of way and use a bell or announce “on your left” when passing.
  • Watch for hazards. Piles of leaves, puddles, gravel and other dangers could make you lose control of your bike. In the city, watch for manhole covers, sewer grates and other surfaces that can become slick.
  • Obey the law. Since laws vary by state, make sure you know the rules beforehand. Red lights and stop signs apply to you, too.

Tips For Motorists

Bicycles on the road are, by law, vehicles with the same rights as motor vehicles. It’s the responsibility of both the rider and driver to share the road. Here’s a few ways to protect those using pedal power.

  • Be patient. If the lane is too narrow, if there’s oncoming traffic, or if you don’t have enough visibility to pass…don’t.
  • Reduce your speed when approaching a bicycle. Even if there’s a bike lane, an opening car door, for example, may cause the rider to swerve into traffic.
  • Don’t honk. You could startle the rider. Make eye contact and, if you make a mistake, everyone loves a courtesy wave.
  • Be extra cautious of children. They can be even more unpredictable and less aware of the dangers around them.

Welcome to The West High Weekly

The West Weekly is an on-line publication by West High School administration and staff and will be distributed on Sundays via email and popular online media sites like Twitter and Facebook. The purpose of The Weekly is to keep the West High Community informed of upcoming events and also report the news of the previous week. If you have some suggestions or ideas of things you would like to see in this publication, please email.

Non-Discrimination Statement

It is the policy of the Iowa City Community School District not to discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, religion, creed, age, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity and socioeconomic status in its educational programs, activities, or employment practices. There is a grievance procedure for processing complaints of discrimination. If you have questions or a grievance related to this policy, please contact Kingsley Botchway II, Director of Equity, 1725 N. Dodge St., Iowa City, IA 52245, 319-688-1000,