Coffey County Seniors Learn the Ins and Outs of Local Government
by Allie Harris
Government Day is a big event for the seniors of Coffey County. American Legion runs it, and it takes place here in Burlington. All schools in the area are invited for a talk about their organization. The students also get to experience a flag folding ceremony.
The county courthouse is visited next, and all the seniors are split into groups. They go through 12 different stations, all of them unique. One thing these different departments have in common, though, is what they do and how it applies to the students. The presenters can range from the prison system to the department of motorized vehicles. As one can imagine, students learn a lot of new information.
“I learned a lot more than I thought I would,” said Senior Kylie Price. She found the economic information particularly interesting, recalling that a microchip plant is being built near Lebo.
The event finished up at Kelly Park, where the seniors not only ate, but the EMS services presented. They talked about everything they do for the county, and did a few demonstrations as well. One was showing the students how to use their drones.
The seniors of this county not only need to know this information, but they must apply it throughout their lives. For example, Government Teacher Dirk Over’s class is already being given resources to study for their Citizenship Test, which they will not have to take until later this year.
Beyond just the test, these seniors live in a community. It is their civic duty to not only know what is happening in the community, but to be involved in it. What better way to learn how to do these things than an event designed directly for them, put on by their fellow community members?
GSA Freshens Up Title
by Madison Hawley
GSA is starting the year off fresh. The acronym formally stood for “Gay-Straight Alliance” but has now been changed to read Gender and Sexuality Alliance. What are the reasons behind this change, and how will it affect club members and the school?
The main reason for the alteration was because the name, “Gay-Straight Alliance,” was outdated and did not back the club’s goals. For a club founded on the idea of inclusion, the old name was very exclusive. GSA is proudly a place for everyone, including those that do not fit the typical cisgender narrative.
GSA is a national organization whose mission is to make schools and communities safer and more welcoming for LGBTQ youth. Along with the change in name, BHS’s GSA branch is now nationally registered with this organization. This means that the club now has more recourses and backing in order for it to succeed.
The national organization had altered its name from Gay-Straight Alliance to Gender and Sexuality Alliance back in 2016. In the beginnings of creating GSA here at Burlington, the founders chose to censor the title Gender and Sexuality Alliance to Gay-Straight Alliance in order to avoid backlash. Now that the club has established its roots, it has the freedom to move past that censorship.
Here at BHS, the club focuses on education and creating a welcoming atmosphere. This year’s theme is “queer people in history.” Each meeting holds presentations on people who have changed history and also happened to be queer. GSA president, junior Chloe Guptil, speaks on this issue, “[The queer movement/people] isn’t a new thing. We want to highlight some of the forgotten history of important queer people.”
The change in name is not the creation of a different club, however. GSA continues to work towards making our community and school a more friendly and welcoming environment for all students. The club welcomes anyone, queer or not, to join in on meetings and learn something new.
Students to Attend Spooky Themed Boogie
By Sarah Gifford
The Halloween dance is a place where students get together and dance. High schoolers have lots of fun and show off their costumes. These dances bring the students lots of good memories for years to come.
The Halloween dance takes place Saturday, October 22nd. It will be in Kelley Hall from 7 to 11pm. There is no fee in order to enter.
The Wildcats very own senior, Grant Hegg, will be DJ’ing. Grant has been DJ for this fall’s homecoming dance. He plays all the best songs that everyone can sing and dance to.
The Burlington Catbackers will be sponsoring this event. The Catbackers are a parent led group that help support Burlington High. The parents of this group are found all over the place, from working concessions to selling merchandise.
I don’t know what to wear! Is a common phrase for dances. Many people look online for inspiration, and some just wear what their friends are wearing. Junior, Cadence Meyers said, “It is best to usually go with the style you have.” It is okay to be unique, or even wear the same outfit from last year.
How is this dance different from past dances? This years’ will be in Kelley Hall, and not Surprise Me Cakery. There will be various songs, foods, and costumes at the party. The Halloween party will be lots of fun!
by Teagan Harris
Every year, the BHS band travels to different competitions to get rated on music and marching. As part of tradition, the same competitions are always attended. This year is no different.
These events are a great way for the band to see where they stand talent- wise. According to band instructor, William Bostic, “[Competitions] are so important because they help us understand where we are at, but [they are] also a great life lesson.” He admits that yes, it is vital for the band to see how well they are doing so far, but it is also important to have that motive to go even farther.
On October 5th, the marching band took a trip to Emporia State University for their annual event. The hours spent practicing their music and backwards marching all led up to a 10-minute show. The band received a mid-two rating, with one being the highest possible and five being the lowest.
The ESU competition is early in the season, so music sets will still likely be unfinished and music may be unpolished. Mr. Bostic states that even bands that have much more practice time than Burlington’s may not have their show learned in its entirety. This is no issue, though, because another event follows soon after.
The band competed at Baker University on October 12th. They received a high-two rating on the same scale of one to five. The next event they will be attending is Neewollah, which consists of a parade, a marching show, and a fair festival. The band is working hard aiming for that one rating that they want.
“Musicianship and building up the people around you and the fight to get better every day are such important aspects. Band class was the first time where I felt like I was having fun in school because of competitions. Being a part of something bigger and not just being yourself alone is so incredible,” inspires Mr. Bostic. These events are not only great for the wonderful payoff after hard work; they also form a community between students. Band, especially during the first few months of the year, truly becomes one big family.
By Lyra Codney
FBLA (Future Business Leaders of America) is a club Burlington Kansas has had for many years, however this year it has taken a turn for the best. The first change being there new sponsor, Mr. Lambert, who is getting students more involved than ever before. On top of that, the club has received around 28 new members.
One of the first things FBLA did at the beginning of the year was have a conference with Wellsville’s State champion team. Included was, their sponsor going on over a decade being in charge. In the meeting, they explained the importance of being involved in FBLA and the steps needed to take if they want a chance to make it to state.
An important part of FBLA is fundraising. Fundraising helps clubs earn money to cheapen cost for students who make it to state. This year FBLA has already earned money by working for the carnival that came through Burlington. This would not have been possible if the club did not gain the number of members that they did.
FBLA has many new members due to the new sponsor, Mr. Lambert. This is his first time ever being a leader for FBLA. It is not only his first year, but it is also many of the students’, which allows for a great bonding experience and makes room for new ideas and possibilities within the program. One of the changes he wants to make is to, “increase membership, more active involvement in FBLA activities, while at the same time being a constant presence in the school and community.” Also, to hold events to recruit new members, and to help around the community
On top of everything FBLA has done at the beginning of the year, they also went to Emporia State University (ESU). During their time at ESU, they got to learn more about the business world and different job opportunities within it. ESU had many guest speakers with a wide variety of jobs, making it so that different FBLA members could listen to what they were interested in.
FBLA has become one of the bigger clubs at Burlington High School and is trying to get more involved overall. With more members and a new sponsor, changes are in motion to improve the club and its involvement. It is only the beginning of the year, and they have already done so much. Who knows what they will do next.