Titan Tattler: Changes and consistencies shape the Titans’ return to campus
Published 12:10 am Thursday, September 8, 2022
By Claire Reinthaler
For the Clemmons Courier
The first thing many students noticed on Aug. 29 when they arrived back at West Forsyth for the first day of the 2022-23 school year were the newly installed keypads at the entrance to every building that kept the doors locked unless a student or administrator identification number was typed in.
This was just one of the many changes West, along with many other schools in the WS/FC district, made for the school year to improve student safety and better campus life.
The keypads in particular were a response to the increase in school violence in the past year in both the surrounding area, and the country as a whole, in hopes that this extra layer of security might help to better protect students, teachers and administrators in case of such events. The keypads are also a tool being used to help enforce parts of the updated student handbook, particularly in regards to tardiness and skipping school.
Since student ID numbers are required to enter the buildings, the computer system can also track who entered which building and when, greatly deterring students who may have gotten away with such infractions in previous years.
Additionally, there was the reinstatement of tardy sweepers and an updated discipline and dress code, as well as the probable return of absences being counted for exam exemption and athletic eligibility. These changes were all meant to assist in the ‘return to normal’ in the wake of COVID-19 restrictions.
Not all changes were made for the sake of safety and discipline, however. Since Kevin Spainhour was installed as West’s new principal in early 2020, he has been working on updating and refurbishing the campus, such as repainting, adding new decals in the cafeteria building (600), updating the logo and installing banners in the breezeway to help direct students and visitors to the different buildings. The renovation work continued over the summer in the form of redoing the floor of the Harold E. Simpson gymnasium, and on Sept. 1, the court was dedicated to NBA player Chris Paul, a current point guard for the Phoenix Suns and former student and basketball player for West. The ceremony was attended by much of the staff and faculty, as well as the classes of 2023 and 2024, and was also live streamed for the rest of the school community to watch.
Throughout the many changes made to the Titan community, West’s fall athletics remained a constant. The girls tennis, boys soccer, volleyball and cross-country teams all had successes the first week of school, and the football team hosted Weddington Sept. 2 for their first home game since students returned to campus. Despite the large turnout of students in the stands, the Titans ended up falling to the Warriors in a 49-32 loss.
While the 2022-23 school year is only just beginning, one thing remains true: between increased safety regulations and discipline codes, school renovations and athletic wins and losses, the Titan community stands strong.
Claire Reinthaler is this year’s Titan Tattler.