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 A Memorable Memorial Day Activity for SLHS
  I was visited by a couple of our local veterans a few days before the Memorial Day Holiday. They talked to me about the annual project of placing flags at the sights where our local veterans are buried at Oak Grove. Though there were just a couple of days before their project, they reached out to us to try and get a little help with the activity. Setting more than 700 flags at grave sites, to honor those who gave their lives, or passed away, after serving our country, is a great undertaking.
    I had an opportunity to share my father’s story. I honor veterans because I have many of them in my family. Men and women in my family have served since WWI. My dad was a Navy Radarman in the South Pacific in WWII. My family has been touched deeply by participation in every war since our arrival in the 19th century. It has always been my opinion that we can’t do enough to honor the great sacrifices made by veterans and their families during our long and remarkable history.
    Quickly after my conversation with the two men, I contacted my teachers with this story. Our veterans were asking for some help. They were hoping for a few students to help place the flags of honor. After the e-mail went out, it took less than two minutes to get answers from many of my teachers who share my sense of respect and honor for all veterans. In less than an hour, we had more volunteers than we needed. With the help of the first two staff volunteers, a number of students also volunteered to walk to Oak Grove and be extra hands and hearts to help with this traditional project.
    There are some photos of the students, staff and volunteers that set the flags of honor for our local veterans. This type of honor is done in communities throughout Michigan, and all states in our United States of America. It is with gratitude and honor that I share this information and these pictures with you. It is a reminder that those of us who reap the benefits of such great sacrifice should do what we can to honor those that honor our freedom and strength with all levels of self-sacrifice, including laying down their lives to the benefit of all who enjoy the citizenship of this great country.
    I want to share a special thank you to Mr. Hemker, Mr. Berry and the students that accompanied them on this day of remembering and honor. I see these lessons as important as any that can be taught in any classroom. Gratitude is a feeling that we should share with others every chance we get.

Social Hosting: It’s Not All Fun and Games
As the school year draws to a close and summer dare tempt us with the hope of sunshine and warmth, many of us have fun-filled events in store.  Whether we have the opportunity to go the Prom; rejoice with a recent graduate at his/her graduation party; or simply enjoy a backyard barbecue with some friends, we need not forgot a few simple truths.  Regardless if we agree with the law, it bares consequences if we break it.  The Social Host Law, which states that the host of a social gathering may not allow a minor to consume or possess an alcoholic beverage or a controlled substance at the gathering on or within that premises, residence, or other real property, is no different.  Not only is this law in place to protect minors from the direct consequences of alcohol consumption, it exists to minimize the ripple effect that the irresponsible consumption of alcohol can have as well.  As we are all aware, allowing minors to drink at your home or property, even if you think you are helping them remain safe, can expose them to drunkenness, wild behavior, and nausea. However, the ripple effect that we may not consider is that allowing a minor to consume alcohol at your residence can make him/her vulnerable to other exploits as well, including being sexually violated, engaging in sexual misconduct, dangerously over-consuming alcohol, and taking away another parent’s right to govern the life of his/her child.
I had the opportunity to interview local Prosecutor Keith Kushion on the details of the Social Host Laws and their consequences.  He not only provided me with the legal definition of a Social Host (summarized above), he enlightened me about the laws and their consequences. He articulated that if you choose to be a Social Host and are charged, you will be arrested and brought before the District Court Judge for an arraignment.  For a first offense, you could be jailed for up to 30 days, fined up to $1000, and if you serve no time you could be placed on probation for up to three years.  If you are charged as a Social Host and something tragic or criminal happens to the minor under the time of your Social Hosting (like he/she dies as a result of alcoholic consumption), you could be charged with a felony that could include a sentence of prison time and significant fines.
To remind you that the Social Host Laws are relevant and punitive, Prosecutor Kushion shared a story about something that took place in our very own community.  “A few years ago, the police were alerted to a high school graduation party being held on private property.  The homeowner had allowed his graduate to invite numerous classmates to spend the night.  Car keys were collected from those who intended to spend the night…After discovering that underage drinking was being allowed on the premises, the police investigated and discovered that 19 minors had been consuming alcohol at the residence.  The parent was charged with 19 counts of furnishing alcohol to a minor and one count of hosting a social gathering where minors were allowed to consume alcohol.  Ultimately, the parent was sentenced to four days in jail, a fine of $100 for each minor that he pled guilty to furnishing alcohol to, and $1000 fine for being the social host who allowed minors to consume alcohol. Additionally, many of the parents of the minors who were allowed to consume alcohol were extremely upset because the decision to allow their child to drink was being made by someone who had no authority, or right, to make such a decision.  Host a graduation party for your senior? You bet.  Allow minors to consume alcohol at it, horrible idea."
Ty Warczinsky
Prevention Coordinator
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CHOICE Alternative School
St. Louis Public Schools is proud to announce the creation of a new and exciting alternative education program for high school students ages 17 and up.  CHOICE Alternative has been added to the great list of offerings at St. Louis Public Schools. Held at Westgate School on Cheeseman Road, CHOICE Alternative offers students a wide range of curriculum studies as well as community involvement opportunities such as employment, job shadowing, volunteerism, voc-ed, co-op, and much more.  If you wish to enroll, please call Jeff at 989-423-9915 for more information.   
E2020 Lab
The high school E2020 lab is open after school from 3-4pm for high school students.  Even if students are not enrolled in the lab for a class period during the day, they are still more than welcome to come in after school to work on other assignments for another class.  Also, if a student is struggling academically in a class, they could come to the E2020 lab and work on an E2020 class for practice. It doesn't need to be for a grade or a credit, just purely extra time to grasp the concepts they may need help with in their regular class. 

If anyone has any questions please feel free contact Sara Bissell at (sbissell@stlouisschools.net)! 
113 E. Saginaw Street | St. Louis, MI  48880 | Phone: (989) 681-2500 | Fax: (989) 681-4535