Jan. 28 Weekly News Digest: KPS Board meeting, Oxford students return and Russia and Ukraine’s tensions rise


Credit: Milo Turner

Teacher Christina Holmes jots down a note on her lunch break. Holmes often allows Spanish course students to eat in her room during the hour.

News Team

COVID Updates

Covid Statistics

According to The New York Times’ COVID dashboard, there have been over 652 thousand new cases each day of COVID-19 in the United States, as of January 26. Around 18 thousand cases are concentrated in Michigan and out of the new daily Michigan cases, roughly 479 being in Kalamazoo County. 


Local News

There was a KPS school board meeting this week on January 27 at 7:00 p.m.  In the summary published beforehand, the event was predicted to include a general update from superintendent Rita Raichoudhuri, computer and chromebook replacement information, business and financial reports and a designated time for anyone requesting to address the board (3 minutes per individual). More in-depth information is available in this KPS packet.  

Over the past weekend, January 21-22, the LN Cybersecurity club competed online in the semi-finals of the National Youth Cyber Education Program, CyberPatriot, for the first time in their introductory year as a club. The Cyberknights, as of now, sit at second place in Michigan, with 90 points out of 300. However, 100 points could be added on within the coming weeks because the score is not yet being finalized  

On January 22, Loy Norrix DECA members gathered in Atiba Ward’s classroom to attend the virtual DECA District competition. The students were graded individually on their performance, and there were three possible awards to win: one for role-play, one for the test they took prior to the competition, and one that signified their passing of districts and moving onto the next round, states. 

The following students are moving onto states including seniors: Chanel Wilson, Jackson Bergan, Gavin Gardner. The following juniors: Nadia Abbott, Jaydon Kelley, Wendy Miedema, Sequoya Morning, Trevor Watts, Amady Mboup, Meilie Diaz, Tamisha Smith, Ja’Quan Jennings. The following sophomores: Nateya Thomas, Aliah Ward, Javon Harris, Caleb Jackson, Neyda Isidoro-Martinez, Maxwell Berlin. And freshman Ari Johnson. 

From February 4-March 25, the Kalamazoo Book Arts Center will have illustrated accordion books on display in their gallery. They are located downtown in the Park Trades Center. If you can’t make it in person, you can view this year’s books here


State News

On January 11, students returned to Oxford High School after the mass shooting on November 30th. For the students, it was the first time that they had been back in the building since eleven of their peers were killed or injured. It was a half-day of classes for the students, and sheriff deputies were at the school to make sure everything ran smoothly. 

An upsurge of opposition from customers of Carhartt has arisen following CEO Mark Valade’s staff email sent out on January 14 stating that the company will continue to enforce their own vaccine mandate, despite the recent Supreme Court ruling. Many once loyal conservative customers have decided to boycott the brand while some are resorting to destroying their pieces of Carhartt apparel. Carharrtt has since released statements stating that they will continue to stand by their decision despite backlash. 

On Wednesday, January 25, the state of Michigan celebrated it’s 185 year in the United States. Michigan was the 26th state admitted into the union in 1837. 


National News

The Supreme Court will be hearing Students for Fair Admissions vs. President & Fellows of Harvard College and Students for Fair Admissions vs. University of North Carolina in their 2022-2023 session. These cases are attempting to ban affirmative action in college and university admissions. Their goal is to remove race as a factor in college admissions, a practice used by many colleges to increase their diversity. 

The House committee currently investigating the January 6 riot at the Capitol received over 700 White House documents in relation to the attack on January 20. Former president Donald Trump has been attempting to block the acquisition of these documents for many months but was denied by the Supreme Court and other federal appeals offices. Committee members hope that these documents will shed light on events that took place during the Capitol riots. 

Supreme Court justice, Stephen Breyer, announced his plan to retire on Wednesday, January 26. Breyer was a moderately liberal justice, and is currently the oldest member of the Supreme Court, at the age of 83. This will give president Joe Biden the chance to pick a new justice to add to the court. 

Former governor of Alaska, Sarah Palin, sued the New York Times over “an editorial that incorrectly linked the 2011 shooting of Rep. Gabby Giffords to a map circulated by Palin’s PAC that showed certain electoral districts under crosshairs,” according to CNN

The Times and the author of the editorial, James Bennet, published a correction and apology shortly after the mistake was made. Palin insisted that the claims were made with intentional malice. Palin’s suit challenges the Supreme Court ruling, New York Times v. Sullivan, which, “…affirmed just publishing something false doesn’t constitute defamation and established the ‘actual malice’ standard for public figures—a higher standard than private figures, who only have to prove the false statements were made with ‘negligence,’” according to Forbes article, “Here’s Why Sarah Palin is Taking the New York Times to Court.” The trial was originally dismissed in 2017, but in 2019 that decision was overruled. Now, the trial is set to take place on February 3.


International News

In the past week, tensions between Russia and Ukraine have continued to rise. Russian soldiers have gathered at the Russian-Ukrainian border and US troops are on alert.  The US has also been sending Ukraine weapons and ammunition. NATO has increased their military presence in Russia, Ukraine, and the surrounding regions over the past few weeks. On the other hand, Germany has refused to send arms to give them medical assistance instead. 

According to CNN, the deputy spokesperson for the Russian Foriegn Ministry, Alex Zaystez, said, ,“We consider unacceptable even the idea of a war between our peoples.” Russia has been, and is continuing to say, they will not be waging war with Ukraine.