Students look back on blissful school moments in 2022


Photo used with permission from Google Creative Commons

As students walk through the school’s front doors, they enter an environment where they are encouraged to excel academically and athletically.

2022 was a year full of joy and success for students and faculty across the school. Two facets of the school community flourished: academics and athletics, both thriving at an almost unprecedented level.

While only early and rolling admission decisions have been released so far, the school’s seniors have already received acceptance letters from some of their top choices. A few have even put down their deposits, officially committing to attend next year. One student, senior Jibran Shaikh, was even named a QuestBridge Match Scholarship Recipient, earning a full-ride scholarship to Colby College. “I was and still am so grateful to have the opportunity to attend such a good college for free,” Shaikh said.

The school’s athletic teams also prospered, with the varsity football team winning a playoff game at long last. Especially after last year’s abysmal season, this win was crucial to bolstering both the athletes’ and students’ confidence in the school’s sports teams. “Winning this game was about Wootton’s legacy as a school that excels and strives for greatness in both academics and athletics,” junior Jai Ahuja said.

The current school year also saw changes to important policies at the school that came with the hiring of the new principal, Douglas Nelson. Major policies were implemented with regard to phone usage and bathroom passes. Phones — also called Personal Mobile Devices — are no longer allowed to be used in class without explicit permission from teachers. Bathroom passes are now also limited per classroom and only apply in their respective color-coded zones. “I didn’t like the PMD policy at first, but it has helped keep me more focused and on-task in my classes,” senior Humza Sehbai said.

During this school year also came the quick rise in popularity of ChatGPT, an AI software that can aid students in cheating, especially on written assignments. Instead of thinking critically and creatively, students are able to paste an essay prompt into ChatGPT and receive a complete essay almost immediately. “This can be harmful because it means students are not learning the necessary material and will not be prepared for their future classes or exams in college and beyond,” Sehbai said.

Other highlights of the year had to do with the school community and the enjoyable events that were put on for students. First, there was the BBQ Club and its grillmasters who helped heighten the students’ school spirit by hosting tailgates featuring burgers, hotdogs and face painting before football games. Then, there was Spirit Week, which featured unique themed days such as “Anything but a Backpack Day,” during which students brought anything from ice coolers to their younger siblings to carry their binders and folders. However, nothing seemed to garner the students’ attention more than the school dances. From homecoming to prom, students had something to talk about and look forward to almost all year long.