Category Archives: Around Bosco

Around Bosco: Braves Football Rides-In Style To Their Second National Title

by Hunter Richardson, Assistant Sports Editor

The culmination of hard work and determination from the Braves football team all came together with a celebration of their historic achievements with the national championship parade and ceremony around the campus and inside Panish Family Stadium. 

   (Photo by Brittany Murray, Press-Telegram/SCNG)

Bellflower Blvd. was packed with students, faculty, and parents as the Braves Football team paraded down the street to celebrate their historic season as CIF, State, and National Champions. This was not only an event for Bosco, but the whole city of Bellflower. Down Bellflower Blvd. fire trucks, police cars, and classic cars carrying public figures like the legendary Sam “Bam” Cunningham lead the parade while the Braves followed shortly behind on top of a couple of double-decker buses. 

A few prominent players could not be in attendance for the celebration such as Quarterback DJ Uiagalelei who is away at Clemson, and Kourt Williams II who both took part in early enrollment. The Braves O-line held up a picture of the star Quarterback throughout the ceremony just to remind everyone of the beast that was slinging the ball this season.

The parade then went into the stadium where a stage was set up in the middle of the field. The championship ceremony inside Panish Family Stadium was large scale with news cameras from FOX Sports and ABC7 Eyewitness News, and important figures in the City of Bellflower such as Mayor Juan Garza. All of the accomplishments this year were acknowledged, mainly head coach Jason Negro, who received Coach of the Year and Coach of the Decade awards. 

 Head Coach, Jason Negro, was very humble in the process despite the winning coach of the year and the decade. However, Negro did ride in style with his brother, Special Teams Coordinator, Jacob Negro, and Offensive Coordinator, Steve Lo. 

“I’m just using the platform that I have as a football coach to be able to springboard these kids into college and get them to have great lives and become good men”, Negro said. 

Senior CJ Womack speaks to what this celebration means to him and his fellow Seniors to end his high school career with such an honor.

“The celebration meant a lot. Being in the class of 2020, me and my guys worked our tails off to reach this goal, and to have the city celebrate us meant everything.” Womack said.

Players and coaches were more than excited about the celebration that was brought together by the city of Bellflower. The most enthusiastic was Wide Receiver, Kris Hutson. 

“It’s awesome to have this parade celebrating us,” Hutson said.

The parade was special for this program knowing that they have finally achieved the goal they have been striving for ever since the 2013 team. All of the adversity this program had gone through over the past couple of seasons made this celebration even sweeter. The Braves community has long supported their football program with students through The Tribe, and parents and fans coming to the games. This was the perfect ending to a spectacular and historic season for the National Champion Bosco Braves football team. 

 

 

Around Bosco: Homecoming Proves to be Annual Success

by Ryan Tavera  and Johnathan Gonzalez

Homecoming week is a memory filled period in the school year. The week is filled with activities, food and music that all build up to the big event, where friends come together for an unforgettable night: the Homecoming Dance.

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St. Joseph’s and Bosco juniors posing at the Homecoming Dance earlier this month at the Colony House in Anaheim.

November 3rd, 2019 will certainly be a night to cherish for many St. John Bosco and Joseph students, with bright lights and lively music fueling the exciting evening.

“The dance was actually a great time. I really enjoyed the whole event,” said Bosco junior Hector Andrade.

When asked about the experience, many students shared this same response, so it’s safe to say the night was a success, according to a majority of students interviewed. From Freshmen to Seniors, all were able to join each other on the dance floor and enjoy the night collectively, listening to their favorite music and conversing with friends.

“It was funny to see freshman at the dance all dressed up with their friends. it brought me back to when I was a freshman and my first dance,” said St. Joseph’s senior Grace Gonzalez.

Homecoming 2019 was the first for multiple students, and it was a great first introduction.

“The night was a lot of fun!” said St. Joseph’s freshman Gaby Salas. “Me and my friends had a great time at the dance. I can’t wait for next year.”

This year for Homecoming, Bosco led up to the big event by allowing students to dress up in order to show school spirit. These themes include Independence Day, a Halloween costume contest and Brave Day.

On Friday Bosco students were lead to the gym and met with cheerleaders from St. Joseph’s. The pep rally included glorifying our fall sports, various games, dances, music, celebrating our Homecoming court and creating hype for the football game.

Once the week ended, it was time for St. John Bosco vs Santa Margarita, where the Braves were coming off a disappointing loss against Mater Dei. The Bosco Braves football team was anything but discouraged, defeating Santa Margarita 35-14.

The weekend following was marked by the Homecoming dance on Sunday night at the Colony House in Anaheim. This Venue was historically known for big events like school dances and weddings primarily, which made it an easy choice.

Homecoming this year surprisingly hosted many underclassmen, which gave them the opportunity to be able to experience a dance that they will hopefully remember not only through their high school experience but through the rest of their lives.

The dance was also a time to appreciate relationships already established and reminisce, especially for our seniors, who had it finally hit them that this will the first of many lasts as they approach graduation in May.

Nevertheless, Homecoming 2019 succeeded in helping the students forget about their responsibilities and drama, while at the same time creating memories that can last a lifetime.

Around Bosco: Spanish Honors Society Hosts Annual Dia De Los Muertos Celebration

by Emilio Ceja and Matthew Ruiz

Dia De Los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, is a Hispanic Holiday that is celebrated from October 31st through November 2nd. Every year this event is celebrated throughout Mexico, some parts of Central America and some parts of the United States, including our own community at St. John Bosco High School, which celebrated the event last Wednesday in the quad. 

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The Mexican Culture believes the Dia De Los Muertos to be a time of remembrance and honor to their loved ones who have passed. They also believe the spirits of those who have passed return to be with their families. The way families remember their loved ones is by making a shrine or altar that contains pictures of who has passed, with their favorite foods, flowers, candles and other mementos that represents the deceased.

There are many ways cities celebrate Dia De Los Muertos from concerts, festivals, parades and food trucks. In Mexico, there are a lot of cities that have big celebrations or fiestas to celebrate the holiday. In the United States, some well-known cities that celebrate this holiday are Los Angeles, San Diego, El Paso and New York City. These cities host large parades to highlight celebrations.

At Bosco, the Spanish Honors Society hosts our annual Dia De Los Muertos Fiesta, which offers many different activities for the students, their friends and families. The event had food, music, altars and snacks and desserts being sold by clubs from around Bosco.

A major part of the fiesta were the altar displays that were put together by the Bosco community. These altars displayed loved ones who had passed away and, in Mexican tradition, featured the deceased favorite foods, candles and skulls to show reverence and respect.

The Spanish classes at Bosco each put together an altar with each student bringing in at least one picture of a loved one that passed away. Not only did the Spanish classes make altars, but the Latino Heritage Club (i.e. the “Compa” Club) and the Spanish Honors Society each made an altar of their own.

The atmosphere of the Dia de Los Muertos was one of happiness and cheer. With music being played in the background, many got up to dance. The event hosted a mariachi who played songs from the Disney movie Coco along with junior Travien Sears playing “Recuerdame” another famous song from the Disney movie on the saxophone.

Students enjoyed the event and most stayed throughout the entire evening to enjoy all the festivities.

For both Bosco and St. Joseph’s students, such as junior Mariana Covarrubias, who attended with her family, Dia De Los Muertos allowed for a combined experience of culture and togetherness.

“I enjoyed the altars with all of the pictures on them, and the Mariachi got my entire family up to dance,” said Mariana.

Isaac Rutz, a senior at ,attended the event to support his friends and had some of his family members that had passed away displayed at the altars that were set up.

“I felt that the Dia De Los Muertos festival was a beautiful time in which the Bosco and Joseph’s community could come together to remember those we lost. The altars, food and dance were all amazing,” said Rutz.

The fiesta had a large turnout, with many enjoying the tacos and burritos that were for sale well into the night. Along with the sale of tacos and burritos, multiple clubs including the Spanish Honors Society, The French Club, and the “Compa” Club sold other deserts, like nutella croissants, snacks, like Nachos, and drinks, like aguas frescas. The inclusion of a face painting station also allowed for kids to enjoy the fiesta along with their parents.

A chance to enjoy the company of family and friends and the ability to share culture with others is what the annual Dia de Los Muertos Fiesta is about at St. John Bosco High School.

Around Bosco: Trinity League Game, NFL Prices

by Lucas Garrison, Sports Editor, and Isaiah Holm

The time is here for the most anticipated high school football game of the year, as the Bosco Braves take on the “team in red.” However, the height of the competition seems like it won’t be taking place on the gridiron, but online and at the box office. 

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Yes, this game not only sold out in less than 24 hours, but it is now facing problems of scalping of tickets, security and space.

Although the game selling out in less than 24 hours could be a story in itself, with so much going on as a result of the fast sell-out, we need to cover it all.

Let us start by taking a look at the scalping of tickets and tailgating spaces. Let me remind you that the tickets were released on Saturday morning, but the following Tuesday morning had someone reselling a ticket for $200. No one has ever heard of this before; this is a straight-up high school game that is having tickets being sold at the same price that several NFL teams sell their tickets. Later that afternoon, when this had been made public, someone posted a ticket pack of 5 tickets for $1500. High school games have never had tickets sell at this high index.

When Brave News insider Isaiah Holm went on the hunt to ask administration and the football coaching staff of what they thought of these high ticket prices, all answers were the same.

“Surprised? No. What do you expect? These are two powerhouse teams on and off the field. People wanna see it; they wanna be apart of it. The pack of five is what $300 dollars per ticket, how much is a Laker ticket? Yeah, this is crazy for us and for them, but I’ve only paid top dollar for only one game in my life and that was a playoff baseball game,” said offensive coordinator Stephen Lo.

In addition to game tickets, the Braves host their own tailgate for parents and faculty. The other tailgate area take place in front of the pool in the parking lot. The big news surrounding the two tailgating spots was that they both sold out in a matter of hours along with game tickets.

“At the tailgate I have in the quad, there are over 500 people expected to show up. Now yes, there is going to be a mix of Mater Dei parents with Bosco parents, which I think is great. It’s awesome how they want to put themselves in our atmosphere, and it’s a great way to kick off the evening before the game. That’s what Bosco is about at the end of the day: the family,” said Ms. Amy Krisch, Director of Alumni Development and Special Events.

That’s what I truly believe will sum up this weekend, FAMILY, whether or not the Braves beat the “team in red,” these two schools have so much respect for one another that they are a family. But like any family, they fight, and both are gonna treat us all to a show that will definitely be worth the price of admission.

 

Around Bosco: Students, Parents and Teachers Catch Up To Schoology Learning Curve

by Jonathan Gonzalez and Tim Levine, Executive Editor

Schoology, an internet-based learning program for grades K-12 where students can communicate with teachers, find the school calendar and, of course, see their grades, was launched this semester to mixed reviews.

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A lot of Bosco parents are extremely involved with their son’s academic lives, and most of the Bosco community may be familiar with our school’s old system called Moodle. However, Vice Principal Edgar Salmingo ensured that Schoology was a practical and beneficial shift. Bosco has advanced its technology so their platforms are better equipped for students.

“Schoology is better at syncing with PowerSchool with grades–seeing your class, seeing when your homework is due. And it shows you what you have to do for homework that week,” said Mr. Salmingo.

Students around campus are already noticing the benefits of the change. Junior Ben Hill believes that Schoology will decrease the stress and pressure he previously felt.

“Using Schoology now for personal use just for the students gives us less stress and pressure felt on from out parents since they no longer get notifications of our grades as were the ones who have to be dependable on our grades at our own pace,” said Hill.

Teachers also feel that it is easier to put Powerpoints, Ed puzzles, notes, homework, tests/ quizzes, etc; on Schoology. However, Schoology is also just a learning tool and it will not be able to replace PowerSchool. Mr. Salmingo believes that there is still a place for Powerschool and that it will still be needed going forward.

“PowerSchool is good for information with grades/ GPA or transcript, Schoology is strictly just for learning purposes, schedules, and communication between students and teachers. It’s also great with linking to the students Google accounts,” said Mr. Salmingo.

Some of the students who have been used to the old system of Powerschool and Moodle such as juniors and seniors seem to be finding the transition difficult as it is a completely new system that they are not used to. Senior Andrew Serrano believes that Schoology is more complex, however still finds the transition to be a good idea.

“I dislike Schoology in terms of its complexity and how to use it, but do not hate the idea of switching to a better system,” said Serrano.

Andrew Serrano also thinks that the transition could have been handled better and a formal seminar introducing the platform would have been beneficial.

“We students weren’t given a seminar on how to use Schoology or at least have the teachers explain it to us,” said Serrano.

He also did give some good feedback with Schoology. He likes the fact that we can see “percentages of tests, homework, projects, and classwork.”

While some of the Juniors and Seniors are having difficulty and concerns about Schoology, many freshmen who only know Schoology believe that it is a great platform.

“It is an awesome system with grades, homework, and our school schedules,” said freshman Victor Murillo

Murillo loves all the different functions Schoology serves and appreciates the new calendar system.

“I love that you can also check whether your teacher is coming to class or not on different days and that on the calendar you can see what colleges are coming to our campus to talk to us,” said Murillo.

The new system of Schoology doesn’t yet seem to be a perfect match with all of St. John Bosco but with all of the functions it has to offer and the clean interface, it seems to make the teachers’ jobs much easier.

Mr. Fernando who has been a big face at Bosco, being part of the Dean’s staff and now a full-time English teacher, is also getting adjusted to Schoology and time to get to know what Schoology is all about. He believes that it is the right transition, as it creates an easier and more convenient interface for teachers to work with.

“I don’t think it’s easy to compare PowerSchool and Schoology but I do think Schoology is a lot better than Moodle for its interface and ease of constructing classes for students,” said Mr. Fernando.

Parents of students at St. John Bosco also believe that Schoology can be very beneficial for students as well as for them. Freshman Joshua Gonzalez’s mother Ana Gonzalez likes how informative Schoology is.

“Schoology compared to PowerSchool is a lot more informative on the updates it gives out and also how we can see what’s going on at Bosco and I can see what’s upcoming assignments my son has coming up and anything he has late,” said Mrs. Gonzalez

Mrs.Gonzalez also does not have the Schoology app, as she believes it will give her son more personal responsibility and will not make him feel as stressed.

“I don’t have the app Schoology to be able to give my son the responsibility of being a young adult and having to do his schoolwork without me having to constantly remind him like how I have done with my other son. I can tell it gave my older son a lot more stress and was always worrying about grades,” said Mrs. Gonzales

Mrs. Dolphin, a known figure at St. John Bosco, has some thoughts on Schoology not only as a teacher but as a parent as well, her twin boys class of 2019 Myles and Isaiah dolphin both currently attend Brown University. She believes that Powerschool’s interface is more friendly for checking grades, as a lot of parents are not educated on how to use Schoology.

“As a parent, I liked PowerSchool because checking my sons’ grades was a lot easier than Schoology. A lot of the parents of sophomore class to the senior class don’t know how to use Schoology,” said Mrs. Dolphin.

She also believes that while it can be seen as more complicated, it does help provide students with a more stress-free environment.

“Schoology is a lot more effective. Also, it is a lot more stress-free and indicative then PowerSchool, and it gives students more ownership of their grades,” said Mrs. Dolphin.

Schoology has taken its share of criticism in replacing Moodle. Schoology gives the students less anxiety and allows them to focus on school and not worry so much about their grades being shown to their parents day in and day out.

Around Bosco: Decathlon Represents in Trip to Philippines

by Elias Gomez

Vice Principal Mr. Edgar Salmingo returned from Manila with our Decathlon Program with “Coach of the Year” honors to his name, as Bosco students competed against 600 schools from thirty countries. As a result of their success, they qualified for the next stage of competition, The Tournament of Champions, at Yale University.

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While the football team was traveling across the country, our Brave Decathletes took a fourteen-hour trip over the Pacific Ocean and across the globe. Having such a long trip gave competitors time to study and, less importantly, watch all the complimentary movies. The food on the flight was inviting and so were the stewardesses, both of which added to create a hospitable environment throughout the long flight.

They were there for a week but only two days of competition. The first day consisted of the Scholars Challenge (120 questions multiple-choice exam), Team writing (collaborative essays) and the Scholars Debate; all of which take up the entire day. The Scholars Challenge is 75 minutes, the Team Writing is 60 minutes, and the Team Debates vary from two to three hours.

Our Decathlon group placed 20th out of 600 high school teams. There were all sorts of different age groups. One Saint John Bosco student who went was junior Robert Hernandez, who really enjoyed his trip.

“It was cool to fly with my Bosco peers and represent with people I was friends with so that made it better,” said Robert.

Robert Hernandez looked forward to meeting so many people and making friends with people from other countries. He wishes he could have studied more so he could have done better. Next year, his goal is to be the best in his class and to study more. Another junior competitor that took the trip is Charlie Carrera. Charlie looked forward to seeing new places and being out of California. Charlie was proud and humbled to represent Bosco.

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“I felt like it was a huge responsibility to do good because we were representing Bosco,” said Charlie.

Charlie did very well in the Decathlon, leaving with some medals and even a trophy. He wants to continue to do good and earn more medals and get another trophy.

Senior Nathaniel Quigg took one of his last decathlon trips with the Braves, and it was a trip he won’t soon forget.

“I was most excited about meeting competitors from all walks of life, and the Cultural Fair was the apparatus for that to happen. Booths from every country filled the ballroom and the smell of distinct candies and fruits filled the room, it was a great experience,” said Nathaniel.

Nathaniel Quigg was in a team of three facing the best and brightest 200 teams from around the globe. Nathaniel’s teammates were Christian Brueggeman and Valley Lin. Their team placed 15th overall. Their highest placing was in the Scholars Bowl- 8th place in the competition. Nathaniel Quigg placed 22nd place out of 600-700 competitors with his highest placing being 16th in the Scholars Debate Scorer. Being able to represent Bosco outside of the US was a big deal for Nathaniel because they are known as the team that does well and has a good reputation to keep so it brings a lot of pressure. Bosco Decathlon also got to visit our brothers, Bosco Technical School in Manila.

“It was like seeing our brothers from across the world, we had the opportunity to share stories and compare our schools as institutions as well as homes,” said Nathaniel.

Nathaniel Quigg loved his trip to the Philippines and was saddened by its conclusion, as he wishes he could have stayed longer.

“I’d definitely wish to stay longer, the people, atmosphere, the whole environment was something I wish would’ve lasted longer than it did,” he said.

One high that Nathaniel had was being able to venture out into an area of the world he wouldn’t normally be exposed to. He values their excursion to Bosco’s Technical School so much. One low that he had was saying goodbye to the coaches, adjudicators, and fellow competitors he gotten to know and come friends with was tough. He is content with knowing that some are still in contact.

With the success of The Bosco Decathlon, they qualified for the next round- The Tournament of Champions- at Yale University. This should be a great test for Bosco Decathlon, a program that is on the rise!

Around Bosco: Welcome New Band Director, Mr. Ramon Villanueva!

by Travien Sears, Assistant Arts and Entertainment Editor

The school year has begun and many students have noticed a new face around campus, our newly hired instrumental Music Director Mr. Ramon Villanueva. Coming to Bosco from our brother Salesian school, Don Bosco Technical Institute, he has big goals in mind for our music program as a whole.

IMG_1320.jpegMr. Villanueva, a French Horn player, has had some amazing experiences in his over 20-year musical career, from traveling to China, South Korea (twice), performing in Carnegie Hall, recording music for movies, and performing with pop artists in concerts. He is excited to share, encourage and inspire the next generation of musicians and students to work hard and to aim high.

Not only is he working with our students as an educator, but he’s also currently growing upon his own previous collegiate degrees by pursuing another Masters Degree, this time however, instead of being in Music Performance, this degree is one called Musicology. Musicology, literally meaning, the study of music is a somewhat broad subject, however Mr. Villanueva has a focus and passion in Latin American art music. This is a very different emphasis and study than the Western Art Music that is studied by musicians here in America as well as in Northern Europe. He also found a passion for ethnomusicology, which isn’t a focus of study in Western or Latin American art but pretty much encompasses all music as well as the researching of music so that the musicians are able to break down the music of which they are playing.

“[I want] to allow students to feel that they have a place where they can have another creative outlet aside from everything else offered at the school,” Mr. Villanueva said.

One of Mr. Villanueva’s main goals is to give a way for his students to shine creatively. He wants to add more groups to help with that goal. Currently we have the SJB Braves Marching Band & Color Guard, the Wind Ensemble, Liturgical Band & Choir, Jazz Band, Indoor Winter Drumline, Indoor Winter Guard , Percussion Ensemble as well as the beginning and intermediate band classes.

A new group that Mr. Villanueva is excited to add in the near future is a Pure Digital Music Class. This class would entail producing beats and understanding the concept of the music in what we hear in a lot of the songs on the radio in rap, hip-hop and pop(ular) music. Another very important part of Program Growth is “injecting some new blood [and] getting students excited for what we are going to be adding,” Mr. Villanueva said.

Another way that Mr. Villanueva plans on growing the interest and the numbers of the program is by introducing new music to the Marching Band, as well as maintaining and improving upon the traditional charts and standards that have been kept and played in the past. By changing this aspect, he can improve the program so that students don’t get discouraged from doing another group just because they aren’t interested in doing the marching band.

“[I also] want there to be a greater diversity so that people see that we do more than just one thing here,” Mr. Villanueva said.

So far, the Marching Band has put out a few new tunes at the football games and is currently focusing on the ideals of quality over quantity. They’ve put out some new chart-toppers like: “Turn Me On” by David Guetta and “California Love” by Tupac featuring Dr. Dre.

The future goals and possibilities for the Marching Band and Color Guard, according to Mr. Villanueva, include but are not limited to exploring the competitive aspect in greater depth than the program has in the past few years, including competitive parades and traveling to all the football games. This includes trips like Mililani, Hawaii, which the band will unfortunately not be able to attend due to some major logistical details that were way too tricky to work out at the last minute. This can set up the culture where they are on the forefront and have this presence around campus, and part of that will be supporting the athletic teams in various ways.

 

 

Mr. Villanueva also talked about his plans to sustain and build upon the legacy of Mr. Eugene Fabiero, Bosco’s prior full-time band director who passed away in February of this last school year. Someone who had an enormous impact on the music program here as well as on the school community at large.

“Honoring the music that he incorporated in the Marching Band [because] what ends up happening with a departure, there’s always a shift, and for me, we have to honor what he did, but implement what I do and I have to somehow adopt what he did and make it my own. It’s impossible to step and fill someone’s shoes because every person’s mind is unique. I also plan on working with local middle schools to see how they feed into the school and also helping grow the program that way,” Mr. Villanueva said.

The Assistant Music Director, Mr. Christian Fuentes, someone who works the closest to Mr. Villanueva, has a great impression about our new band director,

“I really appreciate his vision for the music program as an alumnus of the program, as well as someone who has been on staff as Assistant Band Director and Front Ensemble Caption Head for the Indoor Drumline Program going on 8 years now, and him and I work very well together in my opinion,” Mr. Fuentes said. “I believe that he’s a great addition to our music program.”

Around campus, everyone is excited and ready to see what is to come with this new look band, and Mr. Villanueva is excited to deliver.

“This is definitely one of the high points of my musical career getting to direct the program, getting to bring my perspective and my background in music to the school and helping students thrive, not just as musicians, [which is important, but] that’s just one of the bonuses, but ultimately creating great people, kind people, people who care. For me, that’s a number one,” Mr. Villanueva said.

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