Top 10 news stories of the year


Bryce Graham

Maddie Shura, sitting on the lap of second grade teacher Mrs. Naylor at a pep rally in February, lost her battle with cancer in April.

Myranda Mamat, Staff Writer

The school year was marked by tragedy and loss with the death of Myers second grader Maddie Shura, who passed away in April after a battle with brain cancer that lasted more than 10 months. Her death touched everyone in the Bellwood-Antis community and beyond it.

Although the story of Maddie’s death is one of the most viewed stories this year there are many stories that made their way to the list of top stories of the year.

Here are the top ten stories that made this year’s BluePrint along with links to the stories.

1. B-A community mourns the loss of Maddie Shura- by Sidney Patterson.
This story touches on the death of second grader Maddie Shura, who struggled with an inoperable brain tumor for ten-and-a-half month battle. Students and faculty discuss how Maddie touched the lives of everyone in the B-A school district and how she will never be forgotten.

2. The iPad initiative: year one – by John Kost

Kaelynn Behrens
B-A went all in for its distric-wide iPad distribution in 2016-17.

With the introduction of iPads in the classroom this year in the Bellwood-Antis School District, impact was a big concern. This story by John Kost discusses how the year went and the advancements teachers have made in the classrooms with the use of this new technology. There are plenty of other aspects of this story as well, which you can read here, including the decision to move to 1-to-1 iPad usage and the preparation involved in making it a reality.

3. The T stands for Trump – by Sidney Patterson
Written prior to the 2016 Presidential Election, this story delves into why the heartland of Pennsylvania, represented demographically by a T that covers the northern and middle section of the commonwealth, tends to vote Republican. It’s an interesting read from the perspective of a Donald Trump victory in November.

4. Pricey Pens are the problem- by Kaelynn Behrens
With the dramatic rise of the cost of Epi-Pens in September this year. The B-A district has to play a whopping $560 for a two-pack of pens. This story discusses the need to lower the price because of it is needed for allergic reactions and can help save lives.

5. Everyone can enjoy physical education – by Sidney Patterson
Bellwood-Antis has been holding adapted physical education classes for special education students for two years, and it has been an overwhelming success for everyone involved. In her award-wining story, Sydney Patterson gets the views of teachers, students, student helpers and parents on the unique program.

6. Band Uniforms- by Myranda Mamat

Kerry Naylor
The band was in need of new uniforms and went on a fundraising campaign to get them.

The Bellwood-Antis Band Boosters spent a year raising money for the purchase of badly needed new uniforms. The dream became a reality this spring, which allowed the boosters to use any extra funds for the purchase of instruments.

7. B-A budgets for next school year- by Phoebe Potter
With money from the government being a big issue on how much schools can spend, BAHS looks into ways they stretch their money and use it took the fullest.

8. PHOTO STORY: Bickle scores in first varsity game- by Ali Wagner
Senior Brandon Bickle made his first score playing his first varsity game when the Blue Devils play West Branch. Checkout the photos from the game that made his year!

9. County Band Cancelled – by Julianna Norris and Jarrett Taneyhill
The B-A music department was set to host its second major band event in as many years, with one day of Junior High County Band already in the books. But a snow storm and subsequent delay caused the cancellation, which is covered in this two-part story following the event.

10. BluePrint honors continue

File photo
The BluePrint continued to earn major awards.

The B-A BluePrint, the Voice of the Bellwood-Antis Student Body, continued to see honors heaped its way in 2016-2017. The site earned its third consecutive SNO Distinuished Site award in February, but it didn’t stop there. In March the site earned first place statewide in the category of Best Web Site from the Keystone Press Awards.

Many individuals received recognition, as well. Kaelynn Behrens was awarded first place in the category for Best Sports Video and Best News Video from the Pa. Press Club. Sydney Patterson, Julian Bartlebaugh and Ethan McGee received awards from the club, as well.

McGee also took third in the sports story category in the Keystone Press Awards.oun

Many writers were recognized by SNO on their Best of SNO showcase including: Dallas Hollen, Sydney Patterson, Ali Wagner, Phoebe Potter, and McGee.

Patterson and Behrens also received awards from the Edinboro Communications Contest.