Talent, Discipline and Plenty of Snow

Sarah Devenport, photo by Steve Davis

Devenport’s work ethic earned her a state championship

By Anthony Schlass, Current Staff

During her junior season, West skier Sarah Devenport won the girls giant slalom state championship in La Crosse with a time of 32.72.

It nearly made her ill. Continue reading

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It’s Good to Be Back

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West junior returns to her team after a traumatic injury

By Anthony Schlass, Current Staff

After spending a year sidelined, Rachel Walecki returned to the soccer field in May.

Walecki tore her ACL during her sophomore soccer season and it’s been a long battle to get back on the field with her West teammates. Continue reading

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Getting Schooled: Choosing a College Is Stressful

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By Beth Williams, Current Staff

With graduation right around the corner, numerous WBHS seniors are taking the time to finalize decisions about their futures.

For East senior Elizabeth Bensen, however, the decision was not quite so easy.

“I applied to 14 schools,” Bensen said. Continue reading

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No Soup For You

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Students with a negative balance in their lunch accounts are turned away

By Kara Conley, Current Staff

Rules are rules, even when it comes to lunch.

Lunch provides a small amount of time for students to enjoy food and conversation in the middle of the day. However, some students are unable to share in the food part due to the hot lunch policy regarding account balances. Continue reading

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Talk Is Cheap, Music Is Better

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As my time as a member of The Current draws to a close I hope to leave you all with one last recommendation that you will hopefully enjoy as much as I do.

Chet Faker is his name (well, Nicholas James Murphy), and his music is going to get me through this summer and the looming shadow of college. Let me introduce you all to this new up-and-coming indie star, and his chill vibes should help you all calm down after final exams like it will for me. Continue reading

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Tooting Our Own Horn: NEWSPA Awards 2016

2016.05.23 Current Staff

WBHS journalists score 12 awards in statewide contest 

For the second year in a row, The West Bend Current received top recognition from the Northeastern Wisconsin Scholastic Press Association.

Judges for the 2016 NEWSPA contest again gave blue ribbon honors to The Current for a website not published as part of a journalism class, saying that many of the stories “reflect an original, enterprising approach to news gathering.”

The website’s student reporters also took home eleven individual awards. Continue reading

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Summer Hype

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As the number of remaining school days lessen and the temperatures rise, TV Talk celebrates one whole year of existence! However, we are not here to discuss the length of my tenure on The Current. Instead, we’re here to talk about all the cool stuff coming out over the summer. Continue reading

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Bensen Selected

2016.05.23 - Hannah Bensen

Hannah Bensen, East junior, will serve as The Current‘s Editor in Chief for the 2016-17 school year.  She replaces graduating senior Lauren Sorensen. Congrats, Hannah!

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Flitter Named Teacher of the Year

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Prizes pile up for East social studies teacher

By Jessica Steger, Current Staff

It’s been a good year for Jessica Flitter, East social studies teacher. Continue reading

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Excuse My French: Netflix’s New Political Drama ‘Marseilles’ Is a Stylized Mess

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I’ll be the first to admit that I was actually pretty excited when I heard about “Marseille.” Imagine, for a moment, Netflix budget + France + political intrigue. Sounds great, right? Well, it pains me greatly to tell you that “Marseille” is underwhelming. Continue reading

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Field of Dreams

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By Justin Scherzer, Current Staff

Not one, not two, but three West athletes will realize their dreams of playing Division I baseball. Continue reading

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See a Show: The Well Pennies Perform with Orchestra Students

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By Anthony Schlass, Current Staff

The WBHS orchestra is teaming up with the Well Pennies to put on a concert Friday in the West Bend Silver Lining Arts Center.

The Well Pennies are a husband and wife folk pop group based out of Boston, Massachusetts.  The acclaimed group consists of four members from all over the United States, from the Seattle area all the way to the East Coast. Continue reading

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What’s the Meaning of Death?

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If any of you at home have been keeping up with a little show called The Blacklist, you’re probably aware of what went down in the 18th episode of season three. A major character died and, naturally, forums for The Blacklist exploded with discussion.

Denial and shock on one hand, praise and credit on the other. Typical responses to this sort of thing.

However, The Blacklist’s controversy isn’t the only controversy to crop up in the television sphere. A certain AMC post-apocalyptic zombie fest recently had a similarly executed finale that has gained no less of a storm with its fans. Continue reading

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Suffrage at Seventeen: Wisconsin Should Pull the Lever

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Legislation would expand democracy and reduce confusion

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By Alyssa Birkeland, Current Staff

At least one vote was improperly cast during Wisconsin’s primary election. This wasn’t a case of voter fraud, though. It was a case of voter confusion.

You may have heard of “Suffrage at Seventeen,” and chances are you have bad information on it. It’s led to misconceptions across the state of Wisconsin, and that’s why one local 17-year-old erroneously voted on April 5. Continue reading

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Whistler’s Bother

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What’s the deal with the notorious East Whistle?

By Beth Williams, Current Staff

Walking through the hallways of the West Bend High Schools, one is frequently greeted with a barrage of noises: the slamming of lockers, the whispering of gossip, and the scuffle of students’ shoes as they rush to get to their next class on time.

One of these various sounds, however, has gained quite the reputation. Continue reading

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Mrs. Lohr Goes to Washington

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West teacher was at the White House Egg Roll when an armed threat occurred nearby at the Capitol

By Jessica Steger, Current Staff

When the office of a senator calls, you answer.

Tanya Lohr, West social studies teacher, received a call March 25 from the office of Sen. Tammy Baldwin as she and her family were traveling to Washington, D.C. to visit her brother over spring break.

“They were like, ‘We just got tickets for your family to go to the egg roll at the White House, would your family like to attend?,’ and I was like oh my gosh… So our whole van was just yelling and screaming, we were so excited,” Lohr said. Continue reading

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Move Over, Steven Spielberg

By Alina Prahl, Current Staff

Five movies by West Bend students have hit the big screen.

The short films were featured at the inaugural Lake Country Film Festival, hosted by the Oconomowoc High School film department at the Oconomowoc Arts Center on April 8. The festival’s intent was to create a platform for exhibiting student films. WBHS was well represented, as its talented student filmmakers received many accolades. Continue reading

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The Defenders, Netflix’s Mightiest Multi-Promotional Series

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Marvel’s really been getting around lately. With the stellar success of Age of Ultron, Ant-man and Guardians of the Galaxy, Marvel has been raking in the cash and praise from all cylinders. However, Marvel seems to have adopted an interest in the smaller scale as of November, when they announced a Mini-Avengers of sorts with previous business partner Netflix. Continue reading

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Swimming with Sharks

Skenandore and Fitzgerald set new school records

By Anthony Schlass, Current Staff

The West Bend co-op swim and dive team is led by two stud competitors, East senior Dakota Skenandore and West sophomore Bryan Fitzgerald.

During the state tournament on Feb. 20 in the UW Natatorium, Skenandore finished second in Division 1 and Fitzgerald took 12th place in the 200-yard individual medley (IM) with a time of 1:58.54 and eighth in the 500-yard freestyle with a time of 4:46.84. This past season Skenandore was ranked third and came out second (490.55) at state, behind only Kenosha Tremper’s Brandon Spencer (343.75). Continue reading

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Playing with Color: The Artist Who Makes Magic

Narendra Patel

 Narendra Patel talks about his career, his influences, and what inspired the sculpture that welcomes visitors to East High

By Hannah Bensen, Current Staff

Soon a plaque will be added to the colorful sculpture in the East yard.

The sculpture, titled “Confluence,” was designed by artist Narendra Patel. The plaque will be placed on the base of the sculpture for viewers to read. Since the sculpture is owned by the West Bend Friends of Sculpture, that organization will decide the final wording of the plaque, with input from the artist. Patel’s wife, Durga, says that the plaque might be installed before the school year ends. Continue reading

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Art Students Enter a New Dimension

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By Alina Prahl, Current Staff

Three WBHS students have decided to break the mold.

Mikki Albiero, Matt Stoll, and Gunner Boettcher have elected to submit 3-D art portfolios for AP Studio Art class. They are the first to do so in the course’s history, according to their teacher Deborah Prahl. In the past, portfolios have been more traditional drawing or other two-dimensional projects. Continue reading

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You Know You (Will) Like It

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Thanks to a popular remix by DJ Snake, AlunaGeorge has finally been brought into the public eye. But the music they created before their “big break” and, honestly, their original version of the remixed song that made them famous, are so good that I am here to convince you that AlunaGeorge is a band you need to check out! Continue reading

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Netflix Revives Your (Parents’) Childhood

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I think Netflix has finally revealed its hand. For a while now, Netflix has been releasing nostalgia pieces, with Fuller House and Pee-wee’s Big Holiday being only the most recent to join the charge. However, what we are dealing with now makes those look modern: Netflix’s Your Childhood, which begins streaming today, is the final boss of nostalgia reboots. Continue reading

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Challenger Donath Emphasizes Respect for Teachers

SchoolBoardElection_LogoBy Alyssa Birkeland, Current Staff

Jennifer Donath is one of four candidates running for school board in the April 5 election, in which two open seats will be voted upon.

Donath grew up in West Bend, attended college in Milwaukee, and returned here for her husband’s job as a police officer. Donath herself was raised in private schools in the city, but sends her second grade son to McLane Elementary and says she “is completely confident in our public schools.” Continue reading

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Candidate Larson Favors More Local Control

SchoolBoardElection_LogoBy Alyssa Birkeland, Current Staff

Tiffany Larson is up against three other candidates in the school board election on April 5. Two open seats will be voted on.

Larson grew up in Miami, and attended the University of Florida for her masters health degree in occupational therapy, as well as Auburn University for her bachelors in psychology. After working in Atlanta for some time, she met her husband and moved to West Bend, where he is originally from. Larson is self-employed through her own personal training business. Continue reading

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Incumbent Marquardt Wants to Stay the Course

SchoolBoardElection_LogoBy Alyssa Birkeland, Current Staff

Randy Marquardt’s school board term is ending, and he is up for reelection. Marquardt faces three other candidates in the race for two open seats. The election is April 5.

Marquardt grew up in Kewaskum and attended Texas A&M University for architecture, and finished schooling at UWM after receiving a job offer. Marquardt’s children have already graduated, and he currently has a grandson in the district. Continue reading

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Schmidt Is Concerned About Curriculum and Common Core

SchoolBoardElection_LogoBy Alyssa Birkeland, Current Staff

Ken Schmidt is one of four candidates running for two school board seats in the coming April 5 election.

Schmidt was raised in Beaver Dam, and attended several colleges to receive degrees in both social work and divinity. He has lived in West Bend since 1979 and currently works at Community Care as a behavioral health specialist. Continue reading

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Full Transcripts: Board Candidates on Hiring a New Superintendent and Principal

With Ted Neitzke and Bill Greymont resigning after this year, how would you like to see the positions of superintendent and head principal filled?

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Ken Schmidt

Well, I’m mainly focused on the superintendent at the present point in time. I think we need to have someone who really has a strong background in curriculum. I think that is a real concern of mine that I have. Especially given the outcomes that we’ve seen recently. And I think as you’ve probably read in the paper, there’s going to be not only a local search but a nationwide search for superintendent. Certainly someone with a wide breadth of experience, with new ideas, and someone who’s going to be very objective. And I hope that that happens. Continue reading

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Full Transcripts: Board Candidates on Teacher Turnover

What are your thoughts about the teacher turnover rate and what do you see as a possible solution?

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Tiffany Larson

There has to be an element of trust and respect. Trust of the teachers towards the administration, and respect of the administration to the teachers. When that relationship has been negatively affected, I think you see a higher turnover rate because the teachers’ autonomy, their professionalism, their skill and expertise, is no longer being recognized and respected. The good news is, I think that fix can be made with just some attention. Some consideration. Positive business management skills. Making our teachers feel in control of the direction of the classroom. Continue reading

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Full Transcripts: Board Candidates on Policy Change

Over the past few years, the high schools have undergone a lot of changes with mixed responses from teachers and students. What course would you like to take in the coming years in regards to policy change?

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Jenn Donath

I want to be sure that teachers have a voice in it because I’m hearing so many times where, teachers from the high schools especially, are saying that “We’re not being listened to, we’re not being respected.” So if some policy is going to be changed, so let’s say for example with curriculum, just like Engage New York once again, we need to be sure that they’re a part of it, they have a voice, and that that voice is being respected and heard. That’s incredibly important. Continue reading

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Oh, Deer

East athletes witnessed a startling event

By Hannah Bensen, Current Staff

The track workout for East runners Alli Trampe and Cassie Bodart took a dramatic turn on Friday.

Trampe and Bodart were running on River Road around 7 p.m. when the pair spotted a deer coming from the cornfields heading towards the road. Continue reading

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Wall of Honor Recognizes Local Veterans

By Kaitlyn Von Behren, Current Staff

East social studies teacher Scott Mindel believes that veterans are not given the respect they deserve nationwide. Compelled by this, he has constructed a Veterans Tribute Wall and video.

The Veterans Tribute Wall is filled with the names of approximately 325 veterans who have also been either students or staff members at the West Bend High Schools.  Mindel says that there are still countless more names to be found. The Veterans Tribute video features around 170 pictures, but Mindel is still looking for more. Continue reading

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Pee-wee in Name Only

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Netflix is really pushing the nostalgic stuff aren’t they? Barely three weeks after Fuller House and we’ve already got other nostalgia trip back to the mid-80s on the plate with Pee-wee’s Big Holiday, and it proves to be a much tastier morsel than expected. Continue reading

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Ten Days That Shook My World

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Confessions of a Teenage Mind

What happens when a high school junior gives up her smartphone?

NO-PhonesBy Isabel Krueger, Current Staff

I had been seeing this everywhere: Snapchat, Facebook, YouTube—people giving up their phones and challenging themselves to be productive for once, or at least since smartphones were invented. I find this ironic, considering I learned about the idea by repetitively clicking on the same apps that I had opened less than one minute before. But why not? After feeling like less than my usual self for the past several weeks, I figured that a detoxifying technology cleanse may be just what I needed, like a cold splash of water in the face.

The Rules

  • I allowed myself email through any desktop computer or laptop for both academic and vital communications.
  • Any use of social media was strictly prohibited. Continue reading

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The Curtain Falls: Wysocky Will Retire After 30 Years in West Bend

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By Maggie Kieser, Current Staff

The last curtain of the WBHS performance of Cinderella in February was more than just the final performance of a talented cast. This signified the final high school musical production for longtime director Karen Wysocky. Continue reading

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