What time can do to a school

The+students+of+the+1993+school+year+wait+in+the+gym+during+the+rally+for+the+homecoming+court+to+be+announced.++With+the+exceptions+of+style%2C+MV+hasn%E2%80%99t+changed+when+it+comes+to+being+spirited+at+rallies.%0A

The students of the 1993 school year wait in the gym during the rally for the homecoming court to be announced. With the exceptions of style, MV hasn’t changed when it comes to being spirited at rallies.

Lauren Edelman , Staff Writer

Time is like a dream.  We fall asleep living in a fantasy then BOOM.  We wake up in an entirely new world of reality.  

For many of the past students, Monte Vista felt like it was constantly changing whether it be from additions of new admin to adding a student center.  The changes that have not only made the staff impressed, but made those returning say, “Toto, we’re not at Monte Vista anymore.”

Often times, people who haven’t experienced the MV culture several years ago, look at the school and think only of the groovy clothes and “trend setting” hairdos of the 80’s and 90’s, but often overlook the gorgeous school that MV has become.  Such as when Mrs. Susan Gordon started teaching at Monte Vista in 1970, the school was mostly dirt with no grass and kids would ride their horses to school.  Across the street in the junior parking lot was a stadium where students could compete in rodeos.

Mrs. Carolyn Dashiell, childcare teacher, has been here for 20 years and said that the 900 and 500 buildings didn’t exist as well with many others.

“My classroom, childcare, and culinary were in a two room building where the current 500 building is,” Dashiell said, “The 400 building was a large stadium type lecture room for science.  The 200 building was for social studies.  The walls were not solid, they were sliding partitions and you could hear everything that was going on in other classrooms.”

We have come a long way with the physical appearance of the school where many teachers have seen the development of dirt becoming paved roads and the hills surrounding the school becoming home developments, but the change doesn’t start there.

“The physical change is good, but our population is huge now,” Gordon said. “In terms of size, the school feels like a junior college.  Unlike the population now, the amount of students was really small, so everyone knew each other well.”

According to college advisor, Mrs. Kathy Harberl, statistics showed that when she first started in 1999, the senior class size was 487 students versus last year’s senior class size of 602.  Also with such a wide variety of students, seniors statistics have shown to expand their college options outside of California 25% more than in 1999.  This also makes it so we now have over 120 college visits compared to the original 30 of 16 years ago.

But the current staff, didn’t feel the same amount of internal change when it comes to education.

“There seems to be at least a recognition that the content and methods of 30 years ago need to evolve, but education is not really built for change,” said Mr. Chris Lum, “There’s always a massive resistance by students, parents, teachers, administrators, and the school district to any kind of meaningful change.”

Haberl agrees that the core academics are the same, but Monte Vista still has it’s same rigor to be the best they can be because Lum has noticed over the past 11 years that it could be our obsession with talent.  

“For both, athletics or academics, it seems like we’re willing to sacrifice all moral standards to preserve the status of kids who do things naturally well,” Lum said.

Dashiell believes that spirit varies every year, always with some classes being stronger than others, but thinks that the Leadership classes are stronger now than they have ever been since they do a better job at planning student involved events.  

“In the end I think kids probably just want some connection to their school- to feel that even if you don’t necessarily share the same interests with other kids you’re still part of the same school community,” Lum said.

Whether it be spirit days or homecoming, no matter what year, students loved to have the same feelings of making memories while being a part of the school and having fun while doing so.

The same joyful attitudes of kids remains the same according to Mrs. Diana Govnik who’s been teaching at MV since 1991, and Mrs. Megan Keefer, assistant principal who has returned to MV after leaving to be a part of the Dougherty.

“People say, ‘kids today…’ that’s a myth.” Keefer said, “Kids are getting better and better.”

Lum adds on to say that kids attitudes won’t necessarily change because they are a direct reflection of the attitudes of the adults and life around them – parents, coaches, teachers, administrators, and students, but to the point where students can create the best situation for themselves, not thinking of the consequences it could bring upon others.  Govnik says, that kids are willing to help each other, but are still the same college motivated kids seen in all years of high school.

But Keefer also mentions that students face different sorts of challenges than in the past, the largest example being online access.

“[Students] have a lot of challenges today that you didn’t have when I first started teaching, one being social media,” Keefer said.

Social media has been updating and keeping the school informed with the news of MV with twitter accounts ranging from club accounts to class accounts to “match maker accounts”, but most other students use their accounts for personal use.

Keefer said that before the internet, students could make mistakes and be forgotten, but now, once a mistake is made on social media, it’s like a tattoo, it stays with you forever.  She felt that students need to be more careful about how they use their personal accounts so they won’t regret it later.

With the rest of the world changing around us, MV failed to change with the turn of the tide.  The past doesn’t define our school, Monte Vista defines its own character that we’ve helped build over the past by continuing to fuel ourselves down a road to success.

The students of 1996, have gone “all out” on homecoming week and excitedly watch as their fellow students are in competition for class activities chosen by leadership.  Unlike today, as a part of their homecoming week, they made individual class competitions for each day of homecoming week including relays, the “Dizzie Izzie”, pie eating contests, and Tug of War!
The students of 1996, have gone “all out” on homecoming week and excitedly watch as their fellow students are in competition for class activities chosen by leadership. Unlike today, as a part of their homecoming week, they made individual class competitions for each day of homecoming week including relays, the “Dizzie Izzie”, pie eating contests, and Tug of War!