Tag: Claire Hafets

Hallway Pass Enforcement

Words: Ashley Berry

By now, many students have noticed the new enforcement of hall passes by Centennial’s administration. It began with administrators guarding the hallway outside the cafeteria during lunch shifts, and it slowly moved to announcements regarding the requirement of hall passes.

On Monday, February 27, teachers began their hall duty shifts. This means that during every class period for the rest of the school year, there will be teachers stationed in different hallways checking to make sure students are carrying passes with them as they move from place to place. A schedule has been made for the rest of the year, and in order to carry out this plan, teachers must use a Program Implementation Period (PIP) for their hall duty shift five times every four weeks.

There have been many questions and concerns raised by students regarding the sudden enforcement, and some are confused and frustrated. Claire Hafets, the principal at Centennial, would like to address the student body, answering any questions or concerns they have, as well as keeping them informed with the new circumstances and requirements of hall passes.

Students, parents, and faculty members are encouraged to email any questions or concerns regarding the enforcement of hall passes to the administration.

For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan

(Updated 3/3/2017 @9:21 a.m. to correct the type of period teachers use for hall duty)

Strutting with the Staff

Words: Sandy Eichhorn

Photos: Michael Merkey

On Thursday, February 11, teachers from all Howard County High Schools came to Centennial to compete in Strutting with the Staff. Centennial had sixteen teachers who impressed the judges and crowd, winning the competition. Centennial teachers Kathryn Carlsen, Antoinette Roberson, David Matchim, Megan Cleveland, Page Barnes, Alexandra Ward, Susan Helmrath, Erin Fisher, Cathy Aballo, Claire Hafets ,Tracy Scaltz, Jennifer McKechnie, James Zehe, Carole Sormanti, Bernadette Mullinix, and Christopher Panzarella, performed a group number, and Centennial’s Senior Dance Company danced during intermission.

For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.

The Greatest Problem in School

Words: Diana Cagas

A significant number of people would agree that students are facing multiple problems in school. Balancing sports and clubs with schoolwork and maintaining good grades is the issue that many students encounter. Other students might come to the conclusion that their greatest problem is just the fact they have to wake up early in the morning.

According to principal Claire Hafets, “the biggest problem [at Centennial] is that the students put so much stress on themselves to succeed.”

Centennial has over 90 clubs for students to be associated with. Such clubs are Harvard Congress, It’s Academic, Science Olympiad, and Model United Nations. There are so many venues for the students and they set aside their own time to partake in multiple activities.

“Stress is the biggest problem because it can come from many different places,” said sophomore Kate Michel, “there are so many things that can cause it.”

How can such a problem like having stress be situated through? To Hafets, Eagle Time, one of the many considerable ideas the Student Government Association has planned, would be one way to help redeem the students’ time. With twenty-five minutes between 2nd and 3rd period, they are able to study for a test, catch up on homework, or meet with a teacher for additional help.

“I think the students really like Eagle Time. What I love about it is that everyone is taking advantage of it, but they’re not abusing their time,” Hafets remarked.

Hafets believes that students want for the school to be number one, otherwise they would not be working as hard.

Having many customs, the students put so much effort into their work. Despite the fact that they have so much to carry through, they show a prodigious behavior through it all.

“I will do whatever it is in the best interest of my students, and if it’s not in their best interest, then we are not going to do it,” Hafets concluded, “because [the students] are my number one priority.”

For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter@CHSWingspan.

Eagle Time- Study Hall or Social Hour?

Photos: Michael Merkey

Words: Melinda Gwanzura

Late last year, Centennial High School’s N.E.S.T. program collaborated with the school’s administration to create a program now known as “Eagle Time.” This program was seen as such  a success last year that the Centennial administration decided to implement Eagle Time to twice a week on Tuesdays and Thursdays instead of providing it once a week on Wednesdays between second and third period.

The idea was originally designed to offer a time period during school hours for students to meet teachers and discuss any concerns or questions regarding school. Eagle Time has significantly evolved from being just a study hall for teachers and students to a period where students and faculty members are able to re-energize.

Starting this school year, Eagle Time no longer just allows students to catch up academically but it also allows them to catch up socially, with students that may not have the same classes as them. Students are now no longer limited to wandering and socializing in the generic cafeteria, classrooms, auditorium and library but are now also encouraged to get active and physical in the gym and other areas of the school excluding the hallways, according to principal Claire Hafets.

When asked about Eagle Time, Moroti Adewole, a freshman, said, “I think that Eagle Time is good and I get to see and chill with my friends that I don’t have classes with!”

For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.

Unfinished Paintings

Words: Chy Murali

Many have seen the painted murals across the walls of Centennial High School. The masks near the auditorium and the piano surrounded by instruments in the hallway next to the orchestra room are some of the many projects the National Art Honors Society (NAHS) has undertaken since the past school year.

Claire Hafets, the principal, asked NAHS to beautify the school. After the designs had been approved by the administration, each mural was assigned a group to work on it. Around 30 artists began the project first by sanding the walls to insure that the pant would stick.
Nan Collins, one of the sponsors of NAHS, said the project was doing well.
“I think they’re excellent,” Collins said, “I think we have great artists.”
Collins is more concerned about the effort than the amount of time spent on working on the paintings. “I would rather take the time to do it well than do it fast and poorly.”
Christina Paul, a 2015 graduate of Centennial, has been working on the murals since last year, but only began painting this year. She finds the experience as something to be proud of.
“I personally have been working on them because it’s fun to work on something with my friends and to add something to my community that I’m proud of,” Paul said, “especially since I still feel very connected to National Art Honors Society.”
Students work on the murals once or twice a week, typically on Thursdays. The murals are expected to be completed next year.
For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.

Hafets Receives Education Award

Words: Miranda Mason

Centennial Principal Claire Hafets received The Washington Post’s Distinguished Educational Leadership Award during a surprise ceremony on Thursday, April 9. Hafets was greeted with applause as she walked into the Media Center for what she expected to be a Student of the Month event; instead, students and staff gathered to cheer on their principal as she was awarded with gifts, accolades and opportunities.

In addition to the award itself, Hafets received a signed letter from the Superintendent of Schools and the portfolio the Centennial community put together for her nomination. Hafets will also have the opportunity to join a cohort group of distinguished leaders throughout Maryland and Virginia, and as a recognition of Centennial’s success under Hafets’ leadership, the school will receive new technology within the year.

“I feel very fortunate to be part of this community,” said Hafets to the audience of students and staff that came to cheer her on as she was given the award. “None of this would have been possible without you.”

According to the nomination form, recipients of the Distinguished Educational Leadership Award must be principals who are committed to their schools and their students, both in fostering creativity and working to help them succeed. The form also lists several traits the award committee looks for in a recipient, and members of the Howard County community mentioned many of those traits when they were asked about Hafets’ work as Centennial’s principal.

“She is the biggest advocate I’ve ever seen for Centennial High School,” said David Bruzga, the director of high schools for Howard County. “She’s brought outstanding energy to the school, and she’s helping continue its commitment to excellence.”

“I have known Mrs. Hafets of a number of years, and I have always been impressed with the passion she brings to the position,” said Howard County Public School System Chief of Staff Sue Mascaro, who was part of the team that presented Hafets with the award. “She does an excellent job inspiring students to achieve. It’s no surprise that under her leadership in 2014 Centennial High was recognized as the top high school in the state.”

Hafets will be featured as a recipient of the award in The Washington Post, and she will also be honored at a formal award ceremony in May.

For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.

First Annual Strutting with the Staff

Words: Ashley Berry

The Howard County Public School System Educational Foundation, Bright Minds, hosted their first ever Strutting with the Staff on Saturday, March 21 at Glenelg High School. This fundraiser raised money to benefit the Bright Minds Foundation and the Students of the Howard County Public Schools.

Strutting with the Staff was a dance competition for all staff and teachers of HCPSS. Teams of dancers competed for votes from people in the community as well as a selected panel of judges: County Executive Allan Kittleman, Becky Funk from Monster’s Dance and Coleen West from the Howard County Arts Council.

The Centennial High School team started to practice in January. Theo Brown and Rebecca Clark, two teachers at Centennial, choreographed the dance and taught it the other 13 members: Mrs. Hafets, Mr. Dorsey, Mrs. Helmrath, Mrs. Barnes, Mrs Fleegal, Mr. Matchim, Mr. Barrett, Miss Hammers, Mrs. Reynolds, Ms. Fisher, Ms. Carlsen, Mrs. Beall, and Ms. McKechnie.

There were 3 different categories of winners: most money raised, most entertaining and judge’s choice. After all their hard work, the Centennial team took home first place for all 3 categories and was named the grand champion.

Many of the staff members on the team had some experience with dance or performing. Barrett and Brown did Step for their fraternity, Hammers was on the dance team when she was a student at Centennial, Fisher has experience in Irish Dancing and Reynolds participated in Centennial’s show, Dancing with the Staff, last year. Also, Carlsen and Matchim are Centennial’s theatre teacher and band director.

On the other hand, there were members of the team, such as McKechnie, who were not dancers and did not have any experience. She said, “The dance was difficult for me to learn because I have not done this kind of thing before. I also wanted to make sure I got it right so I didn’t let the team down!”

“We had some very talented dancers on the team, but as far as our success goes, I think that ultimately it was the patience, dedication and expertise of Mrs. Clark. She had the vision to put everything together and gave us great instruction and encouragement,” said McKechnie. “We had so much fun! It wasn’t everything, but winning was great and I would definitely do this again!”