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Benson High News
Omaha, Nebraska
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February 6, 1970
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Dramatists To Present Rostand Parents, Students, Faculty BeginpSelf Evaluation; P!!uc!!0000n,00Cyo!andoeBe00!kge!acl Results To Determine Possible ollcy Changes from a lot of people," declared Mrs. Christmas vacation the play was read by The entire educational proyatn each of these areas with administrators, supervise the entire self evaluation. This submitted to the Board of Education for Doris StUns, drama coach, of "Cyrano de Bergerac," the play selected to be this spring's dramatic production. The play, Mrs. Stevens explained, tells the story of a man whose main notoriety was achieved by his disproportionately large nose. An 18th century contemporary of the Three Musketeers, Cyrano de Bergerac had unsullied integrity and considerable talent, both of which went unappreciated due to his almost clownllke appearance. In the play Cyrano is represented as being symbolic of all that is good, true and fine in human nature. Written by Edmund Rostand, the play was Ftrst produced in 1897, and received acclaim. It's lasting popularity is evidenced by the notable success of its last two productions at the Shakespearean Festival Theatre, in Stratford, Canada. the humanities classes. After reading the students" essays responding to the play, Mrs. Stevens commented, "Everybody loved it." The production involves a large effort, for the story calls for 10 principal characters, and between 30 and 40 actors insupporting roles. A special problem in the staging will be the episodes involving fencing. Actors needing this training will be taught the art of swordplay at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, as was the case in the 1964 Benson production of "Romeo and Juliet." For an undertaking of this size student participation is wanted and welcomed. Mrs. Stevens emphasized that involvement in the play and its production is wide open to anyone. "I'm sure we'll have the support of all the humanities students," she stated. Marquard Wins Top Position In ROTC Battalion at Ball Senior Philip Marquard was named commander of Benson's ROTC battalion at the annual Military Ball Jan. 22. Jack Osborne, president of the Boosters Club, presented Phil with a saber. Sgt. Maj. Orville Langan called this "'the finest military ball" since he has been at Benson. Sponsoring this year's ball were the military departments of Benson, Burke, Central, and South High schools. Vice principal Donald Ruby was master of ceremonies at the ball. He introduced Dr. Owen Knutzen, Elks Club Honors Bergers in Contest Marvin Bergers '70 is a leader of Elks (Elks Club that is). Marvin won the local division of the Elks Club Youth Leadership contest. He was awarded a $100 savings bond, and his entry will be sent to the state division of the contest. The contest, sponsored by local branches of the Elks Club, emphasizes leadership, interest and concern about the privileges of citizenship, school, church, community, general character reputation, and integrity. Applicants were required to list offices and positions of leadership held in school organizations, honors and awards received in school, extracurricular activities, and civic and community activities. A statement of not more than 300 words summarizing activities, accomplishments and objectives in promoting the welfare of youth in the community was also required. State winners will be entered in the national contest which offers $2,000 savings bond as first prize. superintendent of schools, who made the welcoming remarks. The Benson Symphonic Band and the Crack Squad performed for the program. Other cadets receiving promotions included William Hudson '70, who was named Deputy Battalion Commander, and Daniel Stava "70, Cadet Major and Executive Commander of the battalion. The Grand March, directed by Mrs. Roberta Wirtz, followed the presentation of rank. The ball concluded with dancing, with The Collections furnishing the music. Stork Brings Son The proud father of a new baby boy is Duane Martens, Benson industrial arts department head. Born 9 a.m. on Jan. 28, the baby weighed in at 6 pounds, 10 ounces. Mr. and Mrs. Martens are now the parents of three. "70 Class Committee Plans Banquet Theme Members of the senior class committee for 1970 have been selected by the class officers. The committee will assist the class officers hi choosing a theme for the senior banquet and will help plan the graduation event. Committee members are John Berger, Terri Carroll, Van Harmon, Nancy Hart, Tsu-lin Heng, Kit Holt, Dick Huddleston, Sue Larson, Mary Malone, Paul Nelson, Laura Ostermiller, Dave Parker, Norma Peterson, Kay Shalla, Carol Stahmer, Tom Winslade, and Ruth Wright. Speakers for the banquet will be Doug Johnson, freshmen year; Gay Bolz, sophomore year; Paul Nelson, junior year; and Jane Ford, senior year. at Benson High School will undergo an intensive self evaluation during t h e c o m i ll g in o n t h s. Administrators, teachers, students, and their parents will participate in the study. The evaluation will cover all aspects of the school. Areas to be studied are student activities, school facilities, guidance services, library and media, school and community, and philosophy and objectives. In addition, all acadentic departments will be evaluated. Committees are being organized in teachers, students, and parents. Principal Iioward Sorcnsen emphasized, "We're cutting across all levels. We don't want all '1' students or all Student Council ulelubcr'." l'ach teacher v, ill serve on one comnlittec in his major subject area and on an additional committee of his choice. Dr. Sorensen commented, "it will be beneficial for teachers just to look at each other." This will enable them to develop a better understanding of the problems of other departments. A Steering Committee will compile individual committee reports and group will also include students and parents. Sometime next fall a group of professional evaluators will visit the school and make additional recommendations. Dr. Sorensen explained, "We're afraid we're so close to tile situation that we don't see many of the things we should." Many strengths and weaknesses of tile school are so obvious that they might be overlooked by school cvahiators. In addition, the visitation provides verification of the study by professional educators from other backgrounds. After the visitation, the report will be consideration. Hopefully, the report will be the basis of broad improvements in the quality of education. ttowever, as Dr. Sorensen stated, "The important part is the first half, where we evaluate ourselves." Vice-principal Donald Stewart stated, "Over a period of time we become staid and complacent." The self evaluation may bring to students, parents, and educators a greater understanding of their school. The last self study of Omaha high schools was made 14 years ago in 1956. BENSON HIGH NEWS VOICE OF THE SCHOOL Vol. 41, No. 9 Benson High School, Omaha, Neb., Friday, February 6, 1970 Price 10c Student Council Proclaims Feb. 23-27 'Spirit Week' The Student Council is setting aside February 23-27 as "Spirit Week.'" During this week the Council's main objective is to raise spirit and enthusiasm throughout the school for its up coming athletic events that week. Within the week there will be something done each day to arouse the spirits of teachers and students. Setting off the week will be a skit performed by the Council, and ending it will be the King and Queen of Sports dance. Senior Girl To Advise Teen Fashion Board Stitching her way to fame, Sandi Kasper '70 has become Benson's representative on McCall's Teen Fashion Board. Mrs. Marjorie McDermott says she chose Sandi for this distinction because, "'She is interested in homemaking and sets an example for tile other girls in the way of style, personality, and her interest in clothing." Sandi has taken home economics classes during her three years at Benson, besides taking a modeling course. As a menlber of the Teen Fashion Board her duties involve filling out forms each month pertaining to fashions and fads at Benson. Questions concern such things as popular fabrics, accessories worn with outfits, activities students attend, and new styles. McCalls uses this information to keep Omaha supplied with tile kind of patterns popular in this section of the country. Seniors Clough, Hol00 Russell Win Honors in Nebraska egents Contest 2V+M is the simple algebraic formula which possibly changed the future for seniors Dave Clough, Kit Holt and Don Russell. These three students were winners of four-year Regents Scholarships. Don has also been named to the Nebraska Regents Scholastic Team, made up of the eleven top scorers on the SAT (Scholastic Aptitude Test) who were awarded Regents Scholarships. Sixteen students across the state, including seniors Torn Winslade and Harry Maska from Benson, obtained qualifying scores on the SAT tests and would have been awarded Regents Scholarships. However, due to a misunderstanding, they failed to indicate Dave, Kit, and Don learn the true meaning of "erudite." an interest in the University of Nebraska, and were disqualified. The Regents Scholarships, awarded to tire high scorers on the November SAT tests, were available to all high school seniors in the state who ranked in the upper 25 percent of their class. Using last year's statistics as a guideline, Principal Howard Sorensen stated that anyone with a final score of over 2000 had a good chance of winning a scholarship. Besides offering 9-9 tour-year scholarships, known as Elite Regents Scholarships, 459 one-year scholarships are also available. These are awarded to one student from each Nebraska high school and may bE renewed. Approximately 400 more students are named as alternates. Whenever one of the Regents winners turns down a scholarship, it is awarded to an alternate in order of rank. Benson's one Regent winner and the alternates will not be announced until spring, according to Dr. Sorensen. "'But, by tire tinre school opens in the fall, usually 30 35 Benson students have received scholarships," be said proudly. German Mentor, Librarian Join Faculty for Second Semester From at bome and abroad, two new teachers have come to join the Benson staff. tlans Langner came to Benson as a German teacher at the semester change. He replaces Mrs. Kelly Squires, who resigned to accept a scholarship for study in Germany. Mr. Langner was born in Berlin but spent most of his childhood in German-speaking lnnsbruck in Austria. When he was 8, his family moved to Le Mars, Iowa where he had to learn English. He graduated from Heelan High School in Sioux City, Iowa, later attending St. John's University in Minnesota and Loras College in Iowa. Austria is where Mr. Langner started school, and he feels their schools "were nluch stricter; we learned very rigorously. We didn't say a word during the day." The latter experience may Hans Langner hears some surprising "German" words. explain why he says, "1 think our system in America is better." Previously, Mr. Langner taught at North and Burke High Schools and Indian Hills Junior tligh. While in the army he was stationed at Fort Lewis, Wash. Mr. Langner is married to a Benson graduate, Lorinda Yeisley '62. Robert Mosley looks it up in his Funk and Wagnalls. Something new has been added to the library. It automatically puts the right books on the right shelves, answers questions about the library and generally keeps things rolling. Actually it isn't an "'it" at all. The new addition is Robert Mosley, who was a student teacher here last semester and is now replacing Mrs. Rose McAlhster while she is on leave of absence. Mr. Mosley was born in Rochester, New York, but graduated from the University of Nebraska at Omaha as a physical education major, on an athletic scholarship. At UNO he participated on the wrestling squad for two years. Although enjoying his work in the hbrary, someday Mr. Mosley hopes to become a physical education instructor. When asked how he Bkes Benson so far, he smiled, "The people here are the best in the world." Senior Students Solve School's Parking Problem Students have been able to park on the athletic field north of school, thanks to the efforts of six seniors. Bill Blake, Russ Graham, Ted Grove, Steve Hasentager, Gary Hoult, and Terry Lauritsen approached the administration asking that students be given the opportunity to use the practice field for parking when it is not being used by gym classes. The administration responded by allowing students to park on the field as long as no problems (wrecks, blocked entrances) arise. The six seniors sold parking stickers and supervised the parking lot. ROTC cadets, under the direction of Mark Wright '70, directed traffic each morning before school. Students will be able to park on the lot in dry weather until the field is again used by physical education classes. Studio Singers Perform For 14,000 Basketball Fans Within the past two weeks, Benson's Studio Singers have performed for over 14,000 persons. The group, directed by James Elsberry, sang at the halftime of the Creighton University New Mexico State basketball game, Jan. 29. A record crowd of 11,214 heard the group present original arrangements by Mr. Elsberry and Robert Edson of "Once in a Lifetime," "Spinning Wheel," and "'I've Gotta Be Me." Steve Hillman '71 and Eileen Parker '70 soloed on "Spinning Wheel." "I've Gotta Be Me" featured Terri Eggleston '70. On Jan. 31 the Studio Singers performed at half time of the Benson Westside game. Appearing along with the singers at both games was the Studio Band. Humanities Students Hear More of Heritage; Sorensen Describes 'Philosophy of Plains' Benson humanities students learned more of their heritage on Jan. 29 30 as l)r. Howard Sorensen returned to speak on tile "Philosophy of the Plains." Dr. Sorensen explained that the "responsibility, perseverance, and self-drive" of Midwesterners have been nationally recognized as leadership qualities in demand, especially in California. This has been cited by Frederick Jackson Turner as the "'Black Forest Theory of Leadership," meaning that most great men of each country have come from one region. Many Types Journey to Midwest Our culture stems from three waves of people, he said. First there were the ones whose aim was to exploit the region; they were followed by the "bad" people who had been forced to move West because of their misdeeds; finally there came the immigrant settlers. Some smaller groups also settled here. Young men, driven from Southern plantations because of the primogenitry custom, became welcome inhabitants. Religious organizations settled "communities" (such as the one in Amana, Iowa), but found them "impossible to sustain" because "'pure democracy is chaos." During the amalgamation of many people, "rules to live by" were necessary. There was a breaking away from the doctrines of natural law, Darwinism, and Calvinism. People moved toward William James' idea that man does have some control over nature. 'Hybrid Corn Is Milestone" Dr. Sorensen used hybrid corn as an example of this "control." He stated that "'hybrid corn is one of the milestones in the history of man; it is known and admired by people all over the world except those in Nebraska." In conclusion he encouraged each student to develop his or her own philosophy - to draw on the experiences and thoughts of others for the foundation of each person's "pyramid" of philosophy.