Payson High School

Keeping pace with challenges and changes in Longhorn land

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Another year is coming to an end very quickly. As in any school year, there have been many rewards, as well as some disconcerting situations.

Obviously, the rewards are positive and more enjoyable to talk about.

The most obvious concern that faces our students is their future after the attack on Sept. 11.

This date in our history has brought about a renewal of programs at Payson High School. One of these programs, Character Counts, has had an increased presence in classrooms and around school. Another positive seems to be more students involved in school activities, being apart of the school.

During these last few months teachers have done an excellent job discussing these concerns and rewards with students.

Students have learned valuable lessons and realized the importance of school and certain classes, such as American History, World Geography and Global Economics.

Preparation for next year has already begun. Students at the high school and surrounding eighth-grade classes in Pine, Payson and Tonto Basin have already pre-enrolled or will soon. The staff will be challenged due to an increased number of students enrolling as freshmen all this prior to new classrooms being built.

There will be a great number of changes, including six new classrooms, a cafeteria, a new all-weather track, new entryway to the dome, and a loss of the east wing classrooms. These improvements are long overdue and will be a very exciting addition to our campus.

The end of this school year will link all classroom teachers by computer to the office and the Internet. The network will make attendance, grades and interoffice communications more efficient.

Positive energy abounds at Payson High School. Whether it has been created by the Sept. 11 attack or students just being more involved in school activities, it is well appreciated. Some achievements around school include state champion drama department; superior rating at state for band; state playoff for football; girls and boys basketball; boys cross country; wrestling; state champion girls cross country; fourth-place state finish for speech and debate; and the expectation for all the spring sports to achieve their best.

One of the philosophical goals of Payson High School has been to involve as many students as possible in all school activities and school programs. Club activities and events have greatly increased in student numbers and it is refreshing to see students involved in school activities a commitment that will produce rewards for a lifetime.

In the classroom, we will always strive to offer the best academic and vocational education so students have the opportunity to be successful as community members, go on to college, or meet military obligations.

This changing world will create new and different challenges, both for the school as well as our returning and new students. It is the goal of Payson High School to meet new challenges so that students and staff alike might grow and prosper to whatever levels our dreams take.

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