The School Newspaper of West High School

West Signals

The School Newspaper of West High School

West Signals

The School Newspaper of West High School

West Signals

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According to a study done by Omniscient in 2012, 78% of all high school seniors in the United States admitted to experiencing Senioritis to some degree.
The Mysterious Affliction
Alexandra Arnold, Staff Writer • February 14, 2024
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WHEU Hosts Annual Christmas Tree Lot
Alexandra Arnold, Staff Writer • January 11, 2024
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The Historic Ant Invasion

Ants+crawl+through+the+classroom+into+a+jar.+The+ant+problem+at+West+High+has+increased+over+the+years%2C+and+students+and+faculty+have+searched+for+solutions.+Student+Sebastian+Sumrit+%2811%29+expressed%2C+I+think+it%E2%80%99s+clever+that+teachers+are+coming+up+with+new+solutions+to+get+rid+of+ants+in+the+classroom.%E2%80%9D
Art/Photo by Christo
Ants crawl through the classroom into a jar. The ant problem at West High has increased over the years, and students and faculty have searched for solutions. Student Sebastian Sumrit (11) expressed, “I think it’s clever that teachers are coming up with new solutions to get rid of ants in the classroom.”

Imagine this: You’re in your last period of school, stressed out about the day. You had three tests and a confusing assignment from your fourth period. Instead of listening to the important information your teacher has to say, you lay your head down on the cold, hard desk. Then you see something black crawling around your desk. Is that an ant? Then you find two, then three! What is going on?

   Lately, ants have been popping up just about everywhere in classrooms, but what caused this? As it turns out, the ants aren’t even from the local area. AP Biology teacher Mr. Collins has revealed, “They’re originally from Argentina. They’re an invasive species that’s taken over pretty much.” According to Mr. Collins, these Argentine ants differ from other local ants like the Linepithema ants and the Pharaoh ants because “they actually overlap and they don’t fight each other which is not what [those] ants do.” Unlike the ants we usually see, these ants are more peaceful with each other and are more successful at invading our classrooms. Mr. Collins explained that keeping classrooms ant-free is “making sure [water faucets and supplies] are all tightly shut and making sure that any food trash gets into the outside trash cans and does not get put [into] inside trash can[s].” 

  Nevertheless, there are some classes on campus that are more naturally prone to ant infestations. The new Foods & Nutrition teacher Ms. Gebel expressed that she does not have significant ant problems yet. She revealed her secret, saying “we take the trash cans outside, keep the sinks dry and clean, and we automatically kill the ant trails before they get worse.” She also gave insight into why there’s an ant problem in the first place: “They’re looking for water . . . It was kind of like they just follow the leader. But they didn’t go for anything else.” Ms. Gebel explained that the reason why there’s an ant invasion isn’t because of food. In the summertime, it’s more hot outdoors and can make it harder for bugs like ants to find water and other bare necessities. It would make perfect sense why there’s an ant invasion in the first place ― and why ant invasions mainly occur at West during this time of year.

   If the Foods & Nutrition classroom can stay ant-free, any classroom on this campus can. To keep your classroom ant-free, it seems that placing your trash cans outside and cleaning sinks and faucets is the answer! By doing this, you can successfully prevent any future ant infestations.

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About the Contributor
Katelyn Baba, Staff Writer
Katelyn Baba is a junior who is a first-year writer for West Signals. She’s excited to share the community’s stories with her fellow West High students. Besides writing for Signals, Katelyn is also on Fusion’s competitive dance team and likes to write fiction stories in her free time.