OIS Changes Since Middle School Days

Students stay hydrated with the new hydration stations

Students stay hydrated with the new hydration stations

Sofia Marinac, Molly Swain, Staff Writer

Orinda Intermediate School (OIS) has been making quite a few intriguing changes in the past few years, and as high schoolers at Miramonte, it can be hard to keep up.In the Spring of 2010, OIS Hydration Stations was created, inspired by Ben La Porta’s 7th grade Take Action Project. The Hydration Stations aim to reduce the number of plastic water bottles wasted by students. The two stations provide purified water for students’ reusable water bottles. The school has also introduced Recycle Centers, which encourage students to separate their trash or uneaten food into four different categories: landfill, compost, recycle, and share. In the “share” category, any packaged and untouched food can be found in a tub available to anyone who is hungry for more.
The admin, once strict about the dress code on campus, has recently been taking a more “hands-off” attitude. Students are trusted to use their own judgment and wear clothes that they deem appropriate in a school environment. While a dress code still exists in the agenda provided for students, Angie Edwards, a campus supervisor, does not give the students referrals for violating the dress code or take them to the office like she did in years prior.
“They used to care about short shorts and leggings,” eighth grader Jennifer Phunmunkol said. “They don’t care anymore though.”
New technology has been made available to students. The library’s computer room has replaced all the Dell computers with new iMacs. In addition to this, iPads are being used in the classrooms. Smartboard is another new tool the students have been able to take advantage of. Smartboard is an interactive whiteboard/computer screen that greatly improves the way teachers are able to teach their material. Instead of watching KOIS, the school’s news station, on a TV, teachers and students view the daily updates on their Smartboards.
In years prior, large trees resided on the hills near the bleachers and on the hills around the blacktop. A couple of years ago, the trees were cut down to allow campus supervisors to see students at all times. With the trees blocking their view, it was difficult for them to observe the activity on the lower blacktop.
Rumors of a mural being painted against the side of the Multi Purpose Room (MPR) have circled the school. In addition to this, the lower field may be renovated in the future. “We are currently exploring the possibility of an all-purpose field with an all-weather track,” Principal Michael Randall said. While the plans for said field are still in the workshop, the possibility of this is greatly exciting. Sports like cheerleading, fencing, boy’s volleyball and Pilates have been added to the seemingly endless list of sports offered at OIS. Another interesting addition is morning Mandarin classes.