Marfa ISD September Journalism Dispatches

Breaking News:

Marfa girls’ cross-country team places third in Lubbock meet!

Homecoming game is Friday and junior QB Dustin Martinez turns 17!

Zach Wilson returns to the field for the homecoming game after being sidelined by an injury!

Special announcement

By Isaiah

Regular readers of this newsletter will be happy to note that last month’s issue featuring an article by this reporter about new school rules and policies was brought up in an MISD staff meeting by Coach Ojeda, says a source. The staff agreed with students cited in the article and have decided to use the money generated from cell phones being confiscated to go toward a special treat for students. The source said since school started over $200 has been raised. Stay tuned here for more updates & news exclusives!


Homecoming Spirit Week and schedule

By Chris and Isaiah 

This week is homecoming and Spirit Week! Wednesday’s theme is Senior Citizen Day. Thursday is Favorite Celebrity or Super Hero Day. On Friday, Shorthorns are asked to Purple Out! The parade and pep rally are both on Thursday this year. The parade begins at 6 p.m. (although participants need to line up in front of the auditorium at 5:30!) After the parade, everyone is invited back to the field for the pep rally, which will include lots of cheers, this year’s senior skit, and the burning of the “M.” In order to increase spirit for the Spirit Week Newsletter, we decided to interview the homecoming court and ask what they are excited about for this year’s spirit week and parade floats.

We decided to start off interviewing Samuel Salgado, a king candidate for the senior class, and so we asked him what that is like. He considered and replied “I’m excited and I didn’t see myself being a candidate so it was quite a shock to me.”

I then proceeded to ask if there was anything that he was going to do special to decorate his parade float. He answered, “Yeah, we’ll just try to decorate a bunch and use a lot of purple, with a picture of my class maybe.”

While we were talking I brought up this year’s Spirit Week. Sam said, “The themes are pretty good I think! If there was one I would change it would have to be the Senior Citizen Day. I would personally love a Throwback 80’s Day.” 

For the junior class I interviewed Fernanda Rivera. I began by asking her what she thinks about being this year’s duchess for her class and she said, “Good, I guess, it just happened in homeroom one day!” 

Then my partner asked her about Spirit Week. She responded, “It’s alright! If there was one day I could change, I would add Twin Day.”

Fernanda was carelessly answering the questions, it was hard to tell how she really felt about representing her class. In between interviews, Chris and I started talking about how you can only choose two people for these positions each year and how some people get left out. 

For the sophomores, this year’s duke is Andres Solis. I went ahead and asked him about the feeling of being his class’ duke. 

“It feels amazing and I’m very happy about it!” he said.

Chris then asked him if he had expected to be elected.

“To be honest, I really didn’t see it coming! But I’m excited to be the duke for my class.”

Finally, to end, my partner and I interviewed Freshman Duke Sammy Estrada. When I asked him how he was feeling, he said, “Honestly, I feel great knowing that I get to be the duke this year! I didn’t really see it coming but it’s great for me.” 

Chris then went on to ask Sammy if he had any plans in mind to do with his float for Thursday’s parade, and Sammy said, “Yeah, nothing much, we’re using my dad’s truck and trying to just decorate as best as we can. Also I want me and my brother to throw as much candy as possible.” After that I asked him what his thoughts were in this year’s spirit week.

“I think it’s pretty good but if there was one day that I would want to add it’d be Western Day for sure!” Sammy responded before pretending to lasso this reporter.

To conclude, this is what this year’s homecoming dukes and duchesses and one king candidate had to say about homecoming spirit week, the parade, and the pep rally. Go Horns!


Homecoming interviews

By Taryn and Messiah

Homecoming is a week when people have fun and dress up before the homecoming game as MHS welcomes back alumni. Homecoming is also the week for homecoming duchesses, dukes, princesses, princes, and the king and queen to be announced and celebrated. For 9-11th grades, two people, one boy and one girl, are chosen. My partner Messiah and I wanted to see how the dukes, duchesses, and queen and king candidates felt about being deprived of a high schooler’s dream, the homecoming dance. 

First, we decided to discover how this travesty came about! So, we asked two high school teachers at Marfa ISD. When we asked Ms. Lara, the theater and English teacher, she replied, “They [the sophomores] just didn’t have enough money, plus they voted no to the dance.” The outcome of the voting felt very mysterious. Rumors flew in the hallways that everyone had voted yes, and then that everyone had voted no. Ms. Lara was repeating what she’d heard. We also heard other rumors, like Coach Ojeda does not want a dance because of a volleyball game, and/or that the sophomores of Marfa are just being too lazy! No one seemed to know what was really going on, but Mr. Klockman, the robotics teacher and the sophomore sponsor, cleared up the rumors for these reporters.

He said, “It all just didn’t work out, homecoming was too close to do a fundraiser and sophomores just decided not to when they found that out.” With rumors swept up, and the reason for the homecoming dance not happening determined, we can carry on and try to enjoy this fun and spirited week. Plus, this year’s freshmen (like these reporters!) can learn from the sophomores and begin saving money and planning for next year’s homecoming this year!

You all know Kayla Vasquez. She is a girl who always keeps herself together and does her makeup every morning.

We began by asking her, “How would you feel that we don’t have a dance? And how would you feel if we did?”

Kayla replied, “As a freshman, I feel pretty sad that the dance was canceled because we are only having prom. I also wish we had more events like this. But honestly I’m so excited for homecoming even without a dance!”

Next we asked, “How do you feel being on the homecoming court?”

Kayla excitedly answered, “I think being on the court is going to be very fun and exciting.” Even though Kayla and Sammy aren’t really a couple, I think this pair is perfect for our freshman class. 

We then interviewed Sophomore Duke Andres Solis. He’s really funny and just an all-out amazing guy to be around. 

We started talking, got pretty off-topic, and finally got around to the interview by asking Andres how he feels about the lack of a homecoming dance and his election as sophomore duke.

Andres replied, “I feel great. I love to represent the sophomore class. I hate that we won’t have a dance, because it was the only thing that we had control of, and I just wanted to prove to everyone that we were not lazy and could really do something … honestly I’m very sad, I really was looking forward to dancing and the memories we’d make.” 

When Andres brought up the dance he seemed to be distraught about it. Hoping to cheer him up, we wanted to ask about the homecoming court! 

He answered, “I feel amazing, it’s just so cool to be on the court and experiencing it is just something else, you got to be in it to know it.” As soon as we were finished Andres had to go to the mystic and magical area called theater class and we went on our way. 

Esdras Flores is the junior class duke. When we interviewed him, he really didn’t have much to say, but after a little persistence, we got him talking, kind of.

About the dance, he said, “I don’t really care, it really doesn’t bother me that much, but I guess I’m excited to see how this homecoming goes?” His eyes shifted as he finished answering, he looked like he was looking for a friend to see if that answer worked.

Isaiah gave him a reassuring nod and asked, “How do you feel that you’re on the homecoming court?” 

Esdas replied, “I feel very embarrassed. I really didn’t want to do this.” 

Lastly, for the seniors we picked Nate, one of the king candidates whose partner is Lesly. Nate is a very funny and amazing guy.

He answered our first question about homecoming and the dance by saying, “I’m feeling pretty good and very excited, but I’m pretty sad that for our senior year there won’t be a homecoming dance.” 

After he finished with either a nervous or happy smile, we continued, “How do you feel that you’re on the homecoming court?” 

He considered and answered, “I am feeling good about being a king candidate and this homecoming is going to be very interesting.” 

The whole school at this point knows who the queen and king candidates are and most likely have already decided who they will be voting for. There are all kinds of options and they’re all amazing. I honestly wish all of them could win, but we have to vote for only two. We wish luck to all the candidates of the queen and king court. Also we congratulate the dukes and duchesses of the classes!


Homecoming king and queen candidates: Interviews to help you choose!

By Alex

With homecoming right around the corner, let’s get to know our senior king and queen candidates! Voting is on Wednesday and will take place on Google Forms so make sure to check your email and vote online!

My first interviewees were none other than seniors Juan Bautista and Aubrie Aguilar. I may have interrupted their deep talk during theater class, but they didn’t seem to mind. Once I had their full attention I asked, “What makes you deserve people’s vote?” 

Aubrie laughed at the question, “I wouldn’t say we deserve your vote, but it would be appreciated,” she paused for a moment. “We’re in this together, winning last year was such a wonderful experience, I want to be able to look back and be grateful.”

I asked if they had anything else to say about homecoming, to which Juan nodded. “I think people will favor those more popular.” Aubrie nodded at this. 

“Good luck to our other candidates!” said Aubrie as I wished them luck and moved to my next pair, Lesly Torres and the football star Nathan Peña.

When asked why people should vote for him, Nathan responded, “Why not vote for me?” with a shrug before laughing.

I asked him about his recent tribute to the fallen 9/11 firefighter Christopher Santora, “How did it feel to accomplish the tower challenge?” 

“It was an honor, I always saw firefighters as being strong and being able to pay my respects and persevere keeps me grounded.” An inspiring story about the aspiring king.

“How do you feel that so many candidates are advocating for you rather than themselves?” I asked.

Nathan was taken aback before answering. “It makes me feel pretty confident,” he said and a big smile spread across his face.

I then took my attention to Lesly, an active member of NHS and student council.

“What does homecoming mean to you?” I asked. 

“Homecoming to me is a wholesome event, it really hits home. It’s the start of the year and sets the tone for school spirit.”

I then asked her, “What makes you a good candidate for homecoming queen?” She thought for a moment before responding enthusiastically, “I love Marfa and I feel I would be a good representative for our school and grade.”

“Anything else you want to add?” I asked. 

After being distracted during Lesly’s portion of the interview, Nathan turned back to me and his eyes lit up, “If you vote for us you get half off snow cones from Peña’s Cool Shavings with proof! We’re elite.” 

Though Nathan made a promise, there’s currently suspicion and rumors flying that Nathan is fibbing about the snow cones. He said the snow-cone stand is to make money for his college fund. Is there really proof he has permission from the family business to make such bold claims?

Samuel Salgado and Maribel Meraz are both active members of Young Life as well as the next interviewees. 

“Why should people choose you for homecoming king?” I asked. 

“I view myself as optimistic and try to help people out even if things don’t work out,” Sam explained.

“What is homecoming to you?” I asked.

“Homecoming feels like the first event where the seniors are recognized during the school year.” he exclaimed.

“To me it’s all about the memories through the years and upholding tradition,” added Maribel.

Samuel fidgeted with his hands before speaking, “I would like for us to win, but I’m not sure, Nate seems like a great pick, he has a leader presence and there’s not many like him.” 

Maribel agreed. 

“I make the world a better place one smile at a time,” said Samuel with a big grin pointing to his smile. 

Dimetrey and Ummi came next. 

“What made you interested in running for homecoming king?” I asked. 

“More like I was forced,” said Dimetrey with a scoff. 

I moved to the next question, “How has your view of homecoming evolved since freshman year?“ 

“I actually realize it’s happening now; freshman year they don’t seem to keep students informed,” he said. 

“Anything to add about your fellow candidates?” I asked. “Vote for Nathan, he seems like a nice pick!” he said, nodding.

I then asked Ummi why she thinks she deserves people’s vote, to which she said, “I’m skinny, I’m rich, and I’m a little bit of a witch.” I laughed before she responded, “Do I have to repeat myself?” No, she doesn’t. 

“What made you interested in running for homecoming queen?” I asked.

“I’ve been running my whole life so I thought I might as well chase this bag too,” she said proudly. 

Before I could finish up she looked at me, “Dimetrey said he was forced to run but he loved taking those pictures with me, he couldn’t stop smiling,” she said, shaking her head.

I made my way to Emily Hernandez and Nayar Flores “What made you decide to run for homecoming queen?” 

“Because my momma said so!” Emily said, laughing, “Plus, I thought I would look really good with a crown. I wanna prove to all the haters that the underdog always wins.” she added. I asked if she had anything to say about competition. She looked up, as if her eyes were searching her brain for a response.

“They’re all pretty, but they ain’t me. I think Nayar should win because he’s hot, he deserves the world and he’s always treated everyone so nicely.” she said. 

“If I lose, I’d rather it be to Nate,” Nayar added. 

“This queen deserves her king! Hashtagmakeemilysdreamscometrue!” Emily said in a rush of breath.

Last but not least, we have Alexis Gonzales and Alex Luna (disclaimer, Alex Luna is this reporter.) Active in NHS, student council and Younglife, Alexis Gonzales gave us a peek of what’s to come as the competition heats up.

The reason you should vote for me is because I’m cool like that,” she said. 

“How has your perspective of homecoming changed over the years?” I asked. 

“It changed me because it signified the ending of an era with senior year. I wanted to chase that American dream.” she said.

“Vote for me and Alex, and Alex Gang will take over!” she exclaimed.

“If I win, I would thank the people who voted for me and the supporters since day one. I will never love you any more or less, y’all are my big dawgs,” she said before shaping a heart with her hands. 

Finally myself, I think people can find comfort in Alexis for her bright personality and ability to always make people feel included. I tend to keep to myself, but seeing others come together for homecoming is always so empowering. I can only hope for your vote, but I believe your heart should guide your choices! Best of luck to the other candidates.

Remember that you do not have to vote in pairs, you can choose two individual candidates. Have fun making your pick!


Dress code: Student opinion

By Sam and Zaley

A hot topic right now at Marfa ISD is the dress code. It feels like it’s always being discussed, as students and teachers alike monitor outfits in the halls with a discerning eye. We decided to go around and interview the people we know have been dress-coded this year.

Luis Solis was the first person we interviewed.

“Have you been dress-coded this year?” asked Sam.

“Yes,” Luis replied, “but they told me I didn’t have to go to the office because I got two peoples’ approval that my shorts weren’t too short. It’s unfair for bigger or taller people to wear the same clothing as everyone else! People are subject to their own opinion, because some people might think, ‘Oh it’s her leg,’ but then it’s her––” we cut Luis off there. 

This was not the case last year, added Luis.

We asked if he had anything else he wanted to add.

“The problem is not in fact the strict dress code as much as it is the hypocrisy with the dress code. If we are gonna mandate such a dress code, mandate it for all body types. We come to school thinking we have on a nice fit and then we get dress coded.”

Moving on to Alejandro, a freshman at Marfa High School, we asked,

“Have you been dress coded this year?” Asked Zaley.

Alejandro replied, “Yes, I was dress coded yesterday because they saw my thighs through my pants. I had to change into my athletics shorts.”

Zaley and I looked at each other and wondered to ourselves, is that not the same thing? Shorts that show thighs replacing pants that show them?

We proceeded with, “How do you feel about the dress code?” I asked.

 “It is stupid because people should be able to wear what they want.”

“Do you think the dress code is more strict this year?” Zaley questioned.

Alex explained that he has worn the same pair of ripped jeans several times in recent years, and was never told anything.

Zaley carried on and asked if he thought the dress code should be abolished or just less strict.

“I think it’s needed, but it should not be as strict as it is,” answered Alex.

And the last question, the reason we’re told the dress code exists, a seemingly sexist reason that assumes that teenage boys can’t function in the presence of a bare shoulder, the question we’re dying to know the answer to, “Do you get distracted by others when they break the dress code?”

“No, I don’t really pay attention to that, I don’t really care.” 

There you have it.

We ended by asking if he had anything he would like to add.

“I hope we win our homecoming game!” 

After a heated conversation about dress code during yearbook class, when Ms. Powers was explaining that it had been brought up in a staff meeting and several students voiced their opinions, Zaley decided to interview Kily, a junior at Marfa High School and a vocal participant in the conversation around Ms. Powers’ desk. 

“Have you been dress coded this year?”

“Yes. I was wearing a shirt that was –– it was a crop top, but I had super high rise jeans that covered even my belly button. The only way I would show skin is if I raised my hands up super high.” 

“Why do you think the dress code is unfair?” Zaley asked.

Kily explained that the dress code targets people, yet never says anything to volleyball players who wear short spandex, to football players who wear leggings, and even to cheerleaders who wear their skirts too short. She went on to say that the athletes represent Marfa more, so their uniforms should be in dress code as well. She finds it unfair that they want to force dress code on the rest of us but not include the uniforms of the people who really represent our school.

“Do you think the dress code should be abolished, less strict, or more strict?” asked Zaley.

“I see it useful in some cases, in case people wear something extremely revealing, but in the case that someone wears a shirt that is hardly showing anything, they get dress-coded.”

“If you made up your own dress code for Marfa, what would it be?” asked Ms. Powers.

“For everyone in general, maybe up to here (she pointed to around 5 inches above the knee). See, my butt isnt showing. It’s not even fingertip length, you don’t have to put your fingers down to show, to where teachers know that nothing private is showing. Shorts that don’t show your booty.”

Kily also mentioned, “I think it’s thanks to the dress code that kids are being sexualized. Like, it has the opposite effect. Pointing out the violations and obsessing over what’s right makes you notice it more!”

A topic that also came up was that some body types do not get dress-coded and that staff is trying to dress code guys more to ‘make a point’ that they are not being sexist. We feel that this is an uneven application of the policy and that the selectiveness must be stopped.


MHS needs more extracurriculars!

By Piper

I’ve only been at Marfa for a couple of months and already it’s been relevant to me that there are no music classes. 

In Alpine, I was a part of the Fightin’ Buck Band, and I played percussion. I absolutely love music and band, and I’m sure in almost all my classes thus far this year, I’ve written some paper or essay about how much I love music and miss the band. Last Wednesday, I joined the Alpine community band. 

Music is a big part of my life; there’s always a song stuck in my head that I tap my foot to the tempo of.

I know from conversations with other MHS students that they, too, miss the Marfa choir and band programs. Considering it is already well into the school year, finding a music teacher would be difficult; which is why I suggest we start a club. 

A music club would be supervised by a teacher, and it could be students sharing what they know on instruments together and maybe learning a few songs together. The club could also offer more instruments than a traditional marching band, and offer choir or voice lessons to those who want to sing rather than play. I know that several students want to learn guitar, or like me, know how to play already. The school owns several guitars that were donated last year when the music program was in full swing, and we should be allowed to use them.

As a club, we could all work to teach each other what we know on various instruments. I propose that we begin an after school music club for Marfa ISD students that meets once a week to learn songs and trade knowledge about music. We could have a rock concert at the end of the year. 

Students who prefer a traditional marching band and play an instrument could form a small group band and play for pep rallies and football games if they so desired. This band/club would consist only of kids who actually want to be there, since no one joins something outside of school they don’t want to be a part of. This will mean the students in the band will be dedicated and excited to play!


Summer job

By Tori

It’s always so sad to see summer end because we no longer have time to sleep in and do absolutely nothing! However, I spent my summer working as a lifeguard. Lifeguarding is a professional rescuing job. You rescue those who struggle in water, treat wounds and prevent anything dangerous from occurring. It’s all in the name!

Lifeguards are required to go through both classroom and water training. You are put through a series of tests to make sure you have the skills to be a lifeguard. You also have to do a couple of tests on paper to see how you will handle situations, how many compressions and breaths you do for an infant, toddler, or adult. There’s so much to it. In the end, you’re certified in a bunch of stuff such as professional rescuing, CPR, using an AED, and first aid. As stressful as training was, I think it’s good to be certified in these things. 

Lifeguarding for me wasn’t as enjoyable as I thought it would be. I didn’t know there was so much to it, starting with basic swimming skills through handling someone who has a head, neck or spinal injury in the water. I thought you just had to sit there and look cool, not constantly scan all three levels of the water for drowning victims. I didn’t know how frustrating it is to put up with cranky people and those who have selective hearing.

However, there were good things about lifeguarding. The money for sure, I made $15 dollars an hour working four to six hours five days a week! Another pro is the required 30 minute break. It was so much fun to jump into the cold water that would cool me off immediately and to mess around with other lifeguards. However, the best part was leaving work early due to weather conditions. You can’t get into a pool if there’s lightning/thunder because water attracts lightning. And you know it rained a lot here in Marfa this summer!

Overall, I would recommend lifeguarding to those who have good breath-holding skills and patience. I have neither of those skills. Lifeguarding is a very serious job, and it requires a serious person to take the position and watch over everyone’s safety. The training and certification was very stressful, and it was a lot to take in, but it’s also really good to have these skills because you can help someone when they’re in desperate need. 


Homecoming game: Predictions with Darren

For this month’s article I decided to write about this week’s homecoming football game.

To start off, I asked freshman quarterback Alejandro Rodriguez, who is recently recovering from an arm injury, how the Shorthorns are going to do for the homecoming game. He answered, “We’re gonna win! We’ve got this if we work as a team!”

I then asked him, “Who do you think are the strongest defensive and offensive players?” He replied, “I think Jaden, Derick and Nate are our strongest players for both sides.”

My last question for him was, “What would you change about our offense and defense?”

He said, “Honestly I would leave everything the same. I don’t see a problem with anything!” 

I also interviewed our center, Diego Jurado. I began asking him about his predictions for Friday’s game.

“I think we will have a positive outcome for this upcoming game,” he replied.

When asked about our strongest players he said, “For offense our strongest player is Nate, and for defense, Derick is our strongest player.” 

When I asked about improvements to the Shorthorns’ game, he said, “Half the game we should run our defense we used at the end of the Fort Hancock game and the other half we should run our normal defense.” 

The last person I interviewed was Coach Ramirez. When I asked him about our homecoming match against Sierra Blanca, he said, “I think we will win, do well, get an easy W, and get a good win to give to the fans and ourselves. A WIN WE DESERVE!!!”

I then asked him about our defense and offense and he replied, “Our defense and offense are the key to winning if we follow the game plan.” 

My last question was whether he thinks we should change anything in our playing strategy for the homecoming game, and his response was, “I would not change much. All we need to do is execute the system!”

In conclusion, GO SHORTHORNS!