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Independent PE study is now offered for academy students


By Melody Li

Photo taken by Melody Li


PE Independent Study teacher Mr Harris smiles for a photo.




    In order to pass high school, all the students at Lincoln High School have to finish two years of PE credit.  The students who join an academy, such as AVID or Green, do not have the availability needed to take other classes, so these students sometimes cannot get enough credit to graduate.  The school district has created a class called Independent PE Study (P.I.S.) to solve this problem.


Maria C. Martinez says, “It’s an option only for students that are in the academies because the district wants all P.E. requirements to be completed in the first two years.”


     Additionally, the P.I.S. course is offered at many other schools as well. Although at Lincoln High School, istarted this spring semester.


Ms. Martinez indicates that, “This is a district thing for all of SFUSD.  I cannot say how they are dealing with it at each school, but it is district wide.”  


Principal Shari Balisi says, “There is a whole series of items they have to do and need to put the hours in.  It is not just going to a fitness club and making that count.  There are whole programs that the kids go through.”


Ms. Martinez also says, “The class officially starts in the second week of the semester. There is an application process that Mr. Harris needs to sign off on and I need to sign off on as a counselor, based on parental approval and class guidelines.  It was for students who join some particular programs which required extra elective courses that sometimes don’t allow students to fit PE into their schedules.  Students will receive a grade and five credits on their transcripts.”


This is a pilot program that the district is trying out to meet a growing need among the students.  Hopes are high that it will be successful but it is not guaranteed to be around permanently.  

Ms. Martinez says, “I don’t know if it’s going to go past this semester yet, but this is the first time it is offered and we’re going semester by semester. This class addresses a major issue for many students, so if it works out we can expect an extension into the future.”


    This class is only offered for 25 students at a time since Mr. Harris is the only teacher who teaches this class.  Priority goes to seniors and those students who are in academies. Once enrolled in the class, students have a variety of activities they can choose from but they should fall underneath the following areas: aquatics, combative, gymnastics, individual and dual sports, mechanics of body movement, rhythm and dance, team sports, and effects of physical activity on dynamic health.


    Harris says, “The title is misleading: the class is independent but the class still has structure and typical demands of a class.  A better name for it would be Alternative Physical Education.  This class is choice-based so it should theoretically happen everyday but sometimes it doesn't happen everyday. There isn't a set schedule for the class, again choice, based with a few other requirements. The hours are actually broken down into minutes, 200 minutes per week and 400 minutes per 10 school days.  They are provided opportunities to do activities before/after school as well as a portion independently.”


   P.I.S. is a great opportunity for those who need it, but it’s important to note that it is not just an easy alternative to P.E. It is designed specifically for students that aren’t able to complete P.E. normally. In addition, it’s a rigorous course.  


Mrs. Martinez says that, “There’s very specific activities that are supervised,and there are very set guidelines that Mr. Harris has provided.  I don’t want anyone to have any misunderstandings about it.”


The P.I.S. may be extended beyond this semester if it is successful.  For that to happen, it is important that people are informed about the P.I.S. and what it entails.

Lincoln High experiences a rise in Latino students


By Jose Dominguez

Photo taken by : Jose Dominguez


Latino marching band students practice for a cabinet meeting.




Lincoln High is an integrated school that accepts students from many parts of the world.  This year, the school has noticed an increase of Latino students. In 2013 to 2014, the amount of Latino students at Lincoln was  17% out of about 2000 students. In 2016 to 2017, the amount of Latino students is now at 21% out of  approximately 2000 students. The change is evident and the increase of students is also affecting the amount of students in class. Teachers are sometimes concerned that having too many students in one class is a problem.


Ms. Jackson said, “ I don't know what is the reason for more Latinos being here at Lincoln.”


There are many reasons for why this is happening such as, “Lincoln having many incredible programs,” as some parents stated. Ms.Jackson also said that, “ Parents have heard of Lincoln’s reputation in terms of the academic curriculum.” This increases the amount of students who want to study at this school.


Another reason why the population of Latino students is increasing is because the parents of students like the programs that Lincoln offers. Lincoln's program for newcomers is designed to help those who cannot speak English adapt to an English learning community. Students are given classes that will benefit their learning.


According to Ms. Jackson,“ Parents are looking for a caring school.”  Students sometimes feel unsafe in other schools and that pushes them to find another school that is safe. Parents believe that their kids should be safer at a school that makes them feel safe and comfortable. As of 2014, the increase of police brutality in Latino and African American communities has tripled. Many students attend schools that are farther away from their homes because they do not like what is happening around their neighborhood.


Ms. Jackson believes that we still need more programs for Latinos. She said, “We have the Raza club and the Latino marching band which is still taking baby steps. We also have Spanish classes that further help Lincoln students who are struggling with English .” Ms.Jackson concluded by saying,“One class that really motivates students is the ethnic studies class. This class is important for students to learn about the history of their heritage.


The increase of Latino students is making those who already attend more included. The students are now just looking for a way to be more involved. Adults will have to listen to see what students want.

Cap and gown is free for seniors for the first time at Lincoln

By Maggie Baird

Photo taken by : Samantha Chiu


Lincoln senior Samantha Chiu dresses in a cap and gown as she gets ready for graduation.




With May just two months away, the special ceremony for Lincoln seniors is right around the corner: graduation. Parents, teachers, friends, and family fill the auditorium as students dressed in red from head to toe prepare to walk across the stage. However, the cap and gown cost for the graduating class of 2017 differs.


This year, the cap and gown is free, a first in Lincoln graduation history. Lincoln has worked with the same cap and gown company, Jostens, for quite some time, and that hasn’t changed. Previously, the price for the set was $40 which included a cap, gown, tassel, and medallion. But this year, “To make it equitable for students, SFUSD is paying for the cap and gown for all SFUSD high school seniors,” states vice principal, Lance Tagomori.


Tagomori explains, “The SFUSD General Fund is to provide opportunity and financial equity to all seniors graduating. They already provide the diploma and diploma cover free of charge.


Many students were shocked to hear the cap and gown is free this year. Having to not worry about the cost of buying the formal attire is a relief to most students. Seniors especially expressed excitement towards the news. Lincoln student and senior Ada Yu exclaimed, “I was surprised and happy. It’s always nice to have something free, especially when you were expecting to have to pay for it.”


Although seemingly positive, a few negatives come with a free cap and gown as well. Tagomori claims the cap and gown process can get frustrating, “Even though it’s free, students have to put in their order online. Some students don’t do this, and then they won’t have a cap and gown in time for graduation.” Since the school anticipates this occurance of students not ordering their cap and gown size online, they get extras sent to the school. It can be challenging to pick an accurate amount of extra cap and gowns to order.


Now that cap and gowns are free at Lincoln this year and throughout the years to come, students have one less factor to worry about when graduation day arrives.

Lincoln AP English teacher leaves for a new school

By Chery Hu

Photo taken by : Kelly Lu


Daniel Kim is teaching his AP English class.





      Advanced Placement English teacher Daniel Kim will be leaving Abraham Lincoln High School next year.  After 19 years of teaching English at Lincoln, he decided to leave and is going to start teaching at a middle school in the Bayview District.


“If kids are leaving Bayview to go to schools in other parts of the city, then it is hard to build community in the Bayview.,” said Daniel Kim.   


       Working in a new place makes Mr. Kim feels excited and scared, but he knows that something new is calling to him.  The students are getting private school education without the cost of the private education, so raising funds have become one of the challenges for Kim.     


     “I’m excited to be part of a small school because Lincoln is such a big school, big schools provide a lot at resources but, I am looking forward to really connecting with kids at a small school,” said Kim.


     Students from Kim’s AP English class said that they really enjoyed his class, and that the reason they chose to take Mr. Kim’s AP class was because his past students told them Kim was a great teacher and taking his class was life changing.  Kim’s leaving makes them feel sad, but they are also glad that Kim can step forward to make his dream come true.


     “I was pretty sad when I heard Mr.Kim will be leaving because students at Lincoln won’t be able to experience his class.  However, I was happy to hear that he’ll be teaching at a school in his neighborhood,” stated Kelly Lu, an AP English student .

    “Go! Keep fighting, Mr. Kim!  I believe you can prepare your students for a brighter future,” said senior Kyle Hu.


    Students can rest assured of the future of the AP English class as Sara Falls will be replacing Mr.Kim next year. Falls has great experience with teaching English classes such as Literature and Writing for Publication, and she enjoys working with her students.  Falls chose to take this great responsibility to be an AP English teacher because she thinks this class can provide her with the opportunity to work with students who have a passion for reading and writing. It means a lot of work, as she will be teaching three different classes.


      Falls enjoys working with Kim, and she thinks that Kim is the most inspiring teacher she has met. She felted surprised when she heard Kim will be leaving.


     “One of the things that was exciting to me about it was that I would have an opportunity to work with Mr.Kim, somebody who I find deeply inspiring, and learn a little bit more from him,” Falls stated.


      The goals of being an AP English teacher for Falls is to improve her practice as a teacher, and she hopes the students of the AP English class will be as inspiring and life changing.


      Kim enjoys teaching his classes very much, and he says to his students, “Thank you for opening up your lives to me and opening up your minds.  Teaching is about a relationship; that’s me relating with my students, and them relating to me.  I found that relationship very valuable.”