Final exams, California wildfires and potential U.S. embassy in Jerusalem



Know: Finals will begin, Dec. 18.


Schedule for the week:

Monday, Dec. 18 – full day

  • 1st hour final (8:16-10:16)
  • 2nd hour (10:22-10:57)
  • 4th hour (11:03-12:21)
    • A Lunch (10:57-11:26)
    • B Lunch (11:26-12:21)
    • C Lunch (11:56-12:21)
  • 3rd hour (12:27-1:02)
  • 5th hour (1:08-1:43)
  • 6th hour (1:49-2:24)
  • 7th hour (2:30-3:05)

Tuesday, 2nd and 3rd hour finals

  • 1st final: 8:16-10:16
  • 10 minute passing period
  • 2nd final: 10:26-12:26

Wednesday, 4th and 5th hour finals

  • 1st final: 8:16-10:16
  • 10 minute passing period
  • 2nd final: 10:26-12:26

Thursday, 6th and 7th hour finals

  • 1st final: 8:16-10:16
  • 10 minute passing period
  • 2nd final: 10:26-12:26

No School Friday

All students except for freshmen can exempt one final in any class they have as long as the teacher approves. First semester AP classes also cannot be exempted. After checking with teachers for eligibility, fill out the exemption form that is due at 11:55 p.m., Dec. 14.

Care: When finals are 20% of a semester grade, they can either maintain or hurt a grade. E!Crew is hosting a study slam from 3:05-4:30 p.m. after school in the commons, Dec. 12 and 13. From studying with friends or attending the study slam, students are working together to finish the semester strong.


Know: Raging wildfires in Southern California continue to destroy land and homes, stretching into its second week, Dec. 10.  

Inform: Santa Ana winds pushed dry air towards the Pacific Ocean, causing a reverse wind pattern and ultimately one of the largest forest fires in California, Dec. 4. Climate change provided a new reality for citizens in California as the firestorms have displaced nearly 90,000 people ranging from Ventura County to Santa Barbara County. The fires burned down 800 buildings and stretched over 175,000 acres. While 50 fire engines sat across the town of Carpinteria, 8,500 firefighters battled the six wildfires. The cost of combating the fire is estimated to be $25 million. Authorities identified one death; 70 year-old Virginia Pesola from Santa Paula, California, Dec. 9. Cars crashed while people rushed to evacuate their towns, causing Pesola to die with smoke inhalation and thermal injuries. So far Pesola is the only person confirmed dead. The Lilac Fire left three people with burn injuries and two firefighters hurt.

Care: Los Angeles County fire officials have monitored wind speeds and clarity of air to combat the Thomas Fire moving nine miles in 12 hours. With a focus of establishing a containment line and putting out hot spots, firefighters took steps to protect residents. The Getty Center lays on top of a hill and is designed to keep the artwork protected in cases of wildfires. With an air filtration system that reverses air direction and keeps smoke and ash from getting inside galleries and a one million gallon water reserve tank, the art museum is the safest place for artwork. Even after the fires continued over the terrain, the Getty Center still stands. As the natural disasters continue to spread through earthquakes in Mexico, hurricanes in the Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico, floods in the Midwest and wildfires in California, the country and world suffer from destruction. These issues will not go away, however taking measures to prepare for them is the first step.


Know: Protests in Lebanon followed President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, Dec. 10.

Inform: Once crowds gathered around the United States Embassy to protest moving the embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, Lebanese security forces fired tear gas and water cannons. The protests included throwing rocks and setting a large trash containers on fire. Protests continued in Jakarta, Indonesia with 10,000 people rallying outside the American Embassy. The Health Ministry reported that eight people were hospitalized and 43 people were treated at the scene. Calling Trump’s order a violation of international law, Arab foreign ministers demanded that the the decision be repealed. While the United Nations can discuss the verdict, Washington can veto any measure. President of Indonesia, Joko Widodo, claimed that Trump’s decision violated United Nation resolutions. The United Nations is reviewing Trump’s decision. 

Care: More than 500,00 Palestinian refugees of Israel and the West Bank from the wars of 1948 and 1967 reside in Lebanon. Jerusalem has always been a place of pilgrimage and worship for Jews, Christians and Muslims ever since Biblical times. Since the city is at the center of three different religions, it has historically been an area under contention. Israelis and Palestinians both claimed the city as their own. Before the Arab-Israeli War when Israel seized both halves of Jerusalem, world powers considered the city a special international zone.The United States hasn’t taken a side in the long dispute between Palestine and Israel until 1995 when Congress passed The Jerusalem Embassy Act. While Congress called for the move of the embassy to Jerusalem and for Jerusalem to be recognized as the Israeli capital in this act, every president has waived it until Trump. Palestinians and allies in the U.S. gathered along the Delmar Loop to rally against Trump’s embassy decision. Faizan Syed, executive director of the Missouri chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations led chanting protesters down Delmar Boulevard. With citizens of the U.S. coming from all areas of the world including Palestine, decisions made on the national level regarding Jerusalem hit close to home.