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by Jonathan Z '18

SHSAT: A Overview

On October 26th, 27th and November 2nd, 8th grade and 9th grade students traveled to various test sites distributed throughout New York City to take the annual SHSAT exam. The SHSAT (Specialized High Schools Admissions Test) is an exam taken by 8th grade and 9th grade students who reside in the city. Administered by the NYC Department of Education, the assessment is taken by students who wish to apply to one of NYC’s 8 Specialized High Schools. Admission into one of the Specialized High Schools in the 5 boroughs is based solely on SHSAT performance scores, fully disregarding school grades and state exam scores.

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by Samantha C '14

BSGE Spirit Week!

This week starts BSGE Spirit Week! Show off school spirit for:

Moody Monday - Wear your pajamas to school!
Moody Monday – Wear your pajamas to school!
Twin Tuesday - Match clothes with a friend!
Twin Tuesday – Match clothes with a friend!
On Wednesday We Wear Pink
On Wednesday We Wear Pink
Tension Tuesday - Represent your grade's colors!
Tension Tuesday – Represent your grade’s colors!
Fancy Friday - Dress to impress!
Fancy Friday – Dress to impress!
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by BACC Rag staff

New Student Orientation

On Monday, June 10th, BSGE held a new student orientation for incoming 7th and 9th grade students. Parents stayed in the cafeteria to listen to presentations by teachers and PTA representatives about the school and the program at BSGE. Students went with teachers to classrooms to participate in various ice breaker activities and help answer students’ questions about the school. The Main goal with students is to help them feel welcome and more comfortable due to the big transition they are about to make. Around 100 families were in attendance.

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by Neha M '14

Regents Preppin’ – BSGE Students to Start Regents Prep

As the school year comes to an end, students from the 8th through 12th grade have been attending Regents Prep classes during eighth period to  get ready for the NYS examinations. These sessions are held to guarantee that students succeed in taking the Regents though with only a short period of time spent practicing and studying; classes in BSGE rarely focus on topics discussed on the actual test. Students are often required to take a math and science Regents every year in addition to various history and language Regents, administered in the 10th and 11th grade. This year, Regents week begins on Tuesday, June 11th and ends on Friday, June 21st; although middle school students do not get the week off, high-schoolers are not mandated to come to class during that time.

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by Ana M '14

Should the SHSAT Be So Important?

In order to gain acceptance into one of the nine prestigious specialized high schools in New York City, eighth graders need to take the SHSAT, the Specialized High Schools Admissions Test. These test scores alone determine a student’s acceptance; other factors, such as grades, teacher recommendations, extracurriculars, etc., are not considered. How well a student does on the SHSAT determines where they will spend the next four years of their lives. This places a lot of importance on the test, as it test becomes a make-or-break moment for students who want to attend specialized high schools. The use of only standardized tests to determine admission into specialized high schools is questionable, as it is not the only thing that adequately gauges a student’s capabilities and should not be the only thing considered. However, because all students are, in theory, given an equal opportunity to succeed on the test, it is considered to be the fairest and most objective way to gauge a student’s ability. The issue about standardized testing as the sole means of determining admission has been

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by Maya J '16

BSGE’s New 9th Grade Admissions Process: No Test!

In past years, 8th grade students in other schools who had applied for 9th grade at BSGE were put through a similar selection process as prospective 7th graders: a test and an interview. Students were also asked to submit a recommendation, and copies of their report cards and standardized test grades. However, the number of students applying to BSGE for high school in the past several years has increased a lot. Due to the sudden demand, there is no test or interview for those applying for 9th grade anymore. Instead, they are judged and offered admission solely based on their grades in four subjects (math, english, social studies, and science), standardized test scores, and attendance record.

So why is there a sudden increase in applicants? BSGE, which is still a relatively new school, has only become well-known in the last few years. In the spring of 2012, U.S. News and World Report ranked BSGE as the top high school in the state, and #21 on a list of national high schools. This publicity might explain the significantly larger number of applicants. According to BSGE guidance counselor, Tim David-Lang, this year

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by Justin H '17

9th Grade Flour Babies

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In order to warn 9th graders about the dangers of teenage pregnancy, Mr. Powell assigned his 9th grade health class the flour baby project.  9th graders in the project have to carry a five-pound sack of flour that is dressed like a baby to school, to all of their classes, and then back home.  The flour baby is supposed to be treated like a real baby.  9th graders aren’t allowed to cram the baby in their backpacks, or leave them in their lockers.  The project shows how difficult it is to carry a baby around and take care of it, and warns against casual sex.
Mr. Powell gives this project to every 9th grader in his health class.  It ran for one full week, from January 7 to January 11.  When he was in high school, his health teacher assigned him the same project. Mr. Powell explained, url-1

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by Vivian Y '16

Welcoming Ninth Grade New-Bees

Former eighth grade students transferred from BSGE to a different high school this year, like Stuyvesant, Bronx Science, Brooklyn Tech, Frank Sinatra, and Laguardia to name a few. The students who stayed make up two ninth grade streams, and new ninth graders transferred in to BSGE to fill in the void of missing students.

New 9th graders mingling with BSGE veterans at lunch

The new students (“new-bees”) travel together in a stream of their own, Stream 9-1.  “I think the new-bees should be put into our streams,” says Nicholas Wong ‘16. “It allows them to get to know more people.” One student, who would like to remain anonymous, says, “It’s like some of them are in their own bubble. They don’t have many opportunities to talk to people outside of the new kids because they don’t have the same classes as us.” Most of the new ninth graders are

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by Lydia S '15

Some BSGE Flour Babies Met With Unfortunate End

On January 20th, the sidewalks surrounding BSGE were painted white with flour; obvious evidence that the BSGE’s 9th grade flour babies had been disposed of gruesomely. Flour trailed in front of the building to the deli and all the way down to the 36th Street subway station. What started out as a fun Health class project turned into careless acts of vandalism. In the past years, flour babies had been

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by Isabel C '14

BSGE’s New Ninth Graders

BSGE welcomes some fresh new ninth grade faces. When asked what their first impression of the school was, Laura Agosto said, “It seemed like a secure environment compared to my old school that was deep in a ghetto area.” Some students were not just fascinated by the area in which our school is located. Another student, Lauren Hallisey, commented, “It’s a really nice environment, and the people are nice.” When asked about their impression of the students and teachers, Gabriella Bayshtok said, “The kids seem disciplined, and the teachers are nice and organized.” Laura was just satisfied with having teachers that “make you feel like you learn something new everyday and challenge you.” Of course first impressions are not the only things that make up the first day of school. Laura went on to say, “My best experience was probably being able to meet new people.” While this was great for the new students, sadly to every best experience there is a worst experience. Lauren said, “Having a lot of homework was probably the worst part of school.” Some students seemed to find the positive side to any situation (even going to school). Gabriela said, “I didn’t have a bad experience.” Despite all of their experiences and impressions they are now part of the BSGE crowd.

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by Samantha C '14

Bringing Culture To BSGE: 9th Graders Celebrate Holi

March 18th, 2011 marked Holi, the spring festival for people who practice Hinduism. Hinduism is the third largest religion in the world with most of its followers in India. Holi is celebrated by throwing colored powder and colored water at each other because it also called the celebration of the Colors of Unity & Brotherhood. Some people believe that the significance of the thrown colors is to break the barrier of race and gender—to forget all differences and celebrate the day together.
The 18th also marked the first celebration of the holiday at BSGE. Neha Mehta ’14, a freshman at our school, took it upon herself to bring her culture into the BSGE building. With permission from Ms. Johnson, Neha brought in 6 bags of Holi powder colored red, green, pink, yellow, and blue. Starting even before 1st period, Neha went around the school to adorn her friends (and

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by Samantha C '14

Why You Trippin’, Freshman? BSGE 9th Graders Go Ice Skating at Flushing Meadows

February 15th, tBSGE Freshman went ice skating on their first Council organized field trip. Thanks to the newly created Freshman Council, the 9th graders went to ice skate at World Ice Arena in Flushing Meadows Corona Park. The council members thought that planning a day trip would be much more feasible than an overnight one. Among ideas such as museums, amusement parks, and New York’s landmarks, ice-skating was one of the most requested one-day trips.
Once the trip was planned, the majority of the 9th grade was thrilled. According to the council, around 60 of the 70-something freshmen (and a few teacher chaperones) went ice-skating. One student, Raymond Fu ’14, commented,