News & Features

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Vicki Schwoebel

Name: Vicki Schwoebel Occupation: Academic Technology Coordinator/Librarian Where she works: The Blackburn Library and in classrooms for instruction Reason profiled: Ms. Schwoebel is the MS technology point person for teachers and students, the book cheerleader, an SSR enthusiast, and a bibliography helper. Ms. Schwoebel’s message for the community: “Keep calm and love Spongebob.”


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Christina Barnum

Name: Christina Barnum Occupation: Custodial staff Where (and when) she works: In the Middle School building after school Reason profiled: The staff of The Phoenix Inquirer chose to profile Ms. Barnum as a follow-up to our “Behind the Scenes” article, which discussed members of our community who help us without receiving much recognition. Because Ms. Barnum works after school, students do not often get to thank her for the effort and energy she puts into keeping our building clean and tidy. Ms. Barnum’s message for the community: “Everyone should take pride in their community for a better upliftment of the entire city.”


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Phillip Annas

Name: Phillip Annas Occupation: Director of Middle School Boys’ Athletics Where he works: Shimada Athletic Center offices Reason profiled: The staff of The Phoenix Inquirer profiled him because we wanted to feature someone in the Athletic Department, and at the time that we chose him, there were more females than males chosen to be profiled. We wanted to profile a more gender-diverse group of staff. Mr. Annas’s message to the community: “Okay, well… Happy Thanksgiving! 1, 2, 3… Go Cowboys! Oops…” This is classic Mr. Annas!  


Karen Manker

Name: Karen Manker Occupation: Dining Hall Staff Where she works: The dining hall Reason profiled: Ms. Manker makes and serves meals, which are vital to keeping the community strong. We need the help of Ms. Manker and the other cafeteria staff to ensure we do not collapse from hunger. She is very friendly and brightens up the day of FCS students. Ms. Manker’s message for community: “I’m happy to be in the community, and I meet a lot of nice people in the community. I’ve been working in the community for 21 years, and I have loved every day of it.”


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Carl Bradley

Name: Carl Bradley Occupation: Music teacher. Mr. Bradley runs the jazz band and orchestra for the Middle and Upper School. He teaches music to sixth and seventh graders. Where he works: Orchestra Room Reason profiled: We are lucky to have a music teacher at all. We should be very thankful for him. Mr. Bradley’s message to the community: “Making music for others is one way of expressing your love for the world we live in.”


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Dianne Forman

Name: Dianne Forman Occupation: Middle School Learning Specialist and Director of Support Services Where she works: Middle School Room 20 Reason profiled: Mrs. Forman was profiled because she helps students catch up with missed work and stay organized. Mrs. Forman’s message to the community: “For me the glass is always half full. I am an optimistic person almost always!”


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App Unwrap: MyHomework

Everybody knows how hard keeping track of your homework assignments can be. While we do have Haiku, from my experience, Haiku is clunky, inconsistent, and hard to use. MyHomework, on the other hand, is an excellent app for keeping those homework assignments written down and ready to see as soon as you walk in the door of your house. What does it do? The MyHomework app allows you to record all your daily homework assignments, and then be able to see them when you need to do them. The app allows you to chronicle homework assignments, and set the due date, due time, subject, and even the priority. But all of this is optional, so you can leave the assignment blank except for a short description. Like Haiku, MyHomework has a calendar. Unlike Haiku, this calendar is for all subjects, not for one subject at a time. And, the calendar is…


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Making Our School Colorful

Service-thru-Art is a service led by Ms. Maw-Deis in which students collaborate to decorate our school. They paint, draw, and build. A few weeks ago, we had a No Name-Calling Week. Students were challenged not to call anyone a name. The No Name-Calling banners all around the Middle School were made by the wonderful artists from Service-thru-Art. If you haven’t seen them, you should look in the Middle School building. If you see an art project anywhere in the Middle School, it might have been Service-thru-Art. After being with the group for one morning of Service, I know that their brains work like clockwork when it comes to art. In just a few minutes they have an amazing idea. When interviewing Elliott Gross from Service-thru-Art, he said, “I really like making decorative signs so they stand out.” Their artwork is spreading across the school, and everyone should be very excited for…


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Echo Hill Poll

Please click the headline above to go to the full poll, then scroll down to respond to all of the questions and submit.  Loading…


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Letter from the FOCUS Editors-in-Chief

by Julia Barr ’15 and Jessica Miller ’15 This spring, FOCUS editors Emilia Weinberg and Peter Dissinger approached the Middle School newspaper, The Phoenix Inquirer, about bringing our two school newspapers together. What began as a workshop coordinated by our soon-departing FOCUS editors resulted in this collaborative issue, created by the staff of both newspapers. More important and memorable for us than the product of this collaboration, however, is the experience and knowledge gained from having worked together. The process of putting together this issue was a learning experience for both middle schoolers and high schoolers in working together as a team, seeing how the other’s newspaper is run, and gaining knowledge and experience to apply to their own newspapers in the future. For us as the new editor-in-chiefs of FOCUS, this was also our first try at publishing an issue, and we are so glad that we were able to share this…


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