Coping in Confinement

By Newspaper Staff

Well, here we are in this unexpected situation full of unknowns! Students and teachers are rapidly learning how to navigate Moodle, Microsoft Teams, and more, in order to maintain educational progress separately and safely from their homes.

A quick survey of the newspaper staff revealed these strategies for coping with the isolation and anxiety attendant on the coronavirus pandemic:

  1. Keeping to a sleep schedule, though several suggested that they’re sleeping less rather than more;
  2. Eating healthy snacks, such as fruit, and drinking tea instead of more highly caffeinated drinks;
  3. Playing Minecraft with friends;
  4. Language learning, including teaching themselves Japanese;
  5. Catching up with postponed reading, including classics such as “Wuthering Heights” by Emily Bronte, and “To Chicago and Back,” by Aleko Konstantinov. (Editor’s note: Regarding the latter, I’m amazed by the reach of the 1893 World’s Fair in Chicago; I saw evidence of it in a museum display in Ruse – what an optimistic time!)
  6. Watching Netflix, one gave a recommendation for “You,” a 2018 thriller, and anime;
  7. Writing — essays and journals (Editor’s note: This is a historic moment, so think of all those, like Samuel Pepys, whose diaries have informed us over the centuries);
  8. HOME WORKOUTS – whether in your room, the basement, or on the balcony, everyone needs exercise. Here are some recommended – and free – resources: Jeff Cavaliere has a whole series of www.athleanx.com videos for a price, but find them free on YouTube by searching “home workouts” with his name and he’s constantly updating for current circumstances (i.e. no access to equipment); or go to www.barrecore.com for a free 2-week trial for upper body strength and stretching exercises; or www.chloeting.com/program. There’s a program for you!
  9. Colouring App: Download a free coloring (U.S. spelling) app to your phone and have fun!
  10. Be kind! Be positive! Be safe!

Back in business

By Prue Salasky, Editor

Thanks to being an online platform rather than a physical product, the ELS News will resume operation even as staff members are unable to meet in person.

Looking back to our February article, “Coronavirus Caution,” it seems that our students’ awareness of world events had them on alert back in mid-February, well before the extent of its worldwide impact became apparent.

We hope to continue to address a variety of topics, even as the coronavirus, Covid-19, continues to dominate the 24/7 news cycle.

For me personally the virus’ impact has been life-changing as it abruptly cut short my stay in Burgas without giving me the chance even to say goodbye to my colleagues, students, and friends. On March 13, Fulbright suspended all its programs worldwide and ordered grantees back to the U.S.

I am deeply grateful to the U.S. Fulbright program for my six months at AEG Geo Milev School, where I learned so much from both my fellow teachers and my 300+ students. I hope that, in turn, I contributed to both their language learning and their understanding of the U.S.

As Covid-19 has demonstrated, in a way that none of us wanted, we are indeed one interconnected world. Thank you and please keep reading!

Newspaper hosts Club Fair!

By Stela Mihova (10th Grade) and Newspaper Staff

Photos by Yanis Hristov (9th Grade)

On February 26, the “Club Fair” took place on the school’s second floor during the 5th class period. This event was organized and hosted by the newly established Newspaper Club, which publishes online at www.gpaeburgas.org/Fullbright.

Students learn about a dozen different school clubs
IT specialist Bozhidar Bozhkov records the event
Science experiments attract curious students

There were displays by teachers and students representing the following clubs:

Art Club with teacher Zlatka Koyeva;

The Art Club wowed with its display of talent

Physics Club with Elena Karemcheva;

Entrepeneurs Club “Reborn” and two E-Learning Clubs led by Kostadinka Nedyalkovo;

Literature Club with Ms. Vedrichkova;

Chemistry Club with Ms. Marinova;

Zumba with Elena Polincheva;

Zumba adds some energy to the event

Badminton with Miroslav Stamatov;

BEST (Bulgarian English Speech and Debate Tournaments) with Zornitsa Haralambieva and Prue Salasky;

Newspaper Club with Prue Salasky; and

Newspaper Club members

Club Health with Daniela Stoyanova.

Each club had a table display and students on hand to explain their activities and goals. ‘”I was utterly fascinated by the presentations of all the club leaders,” said Zori Haralambieva, long-time coach of the BEST debate team, referencing the dancing by the Zumba group and a demonstration game by the Badminton club. “Some brought laptops with their own presentations, which means they took it to heart,” added Haralambieva, noting that she learned some things from the Chemistry Club experiments. “The students were all very excited about explaining,” she said.

Ninth-grader Preslava Stoyanova, a member of multiple clubs, noted that the Physics club started preparing a month before the event, and several students who’d become inactive renewed their interest. The Entrepreneurs Club took the opportunity to sell some of their products; and the Newspaper and BEST Debate club made some new recruits for their English-speaking activities.

A scrolling video displayed highlights from all the clubs, including BEST

“The purpose of the event was to bring students together and show them all the opportunities the school offers for them to expand and develop their interests,” said Prue Salasky, Fulbright ETA, who modeled the event on those typical in U.S. high schools and colleges. She credited the school administration for helping to bring everyone together and Fulbright for providing a mini-grant to defray costs. IT specialist Bozhidar Bozhkov put together a video of information and photos provided by the clubs which will serve as an ongoing resource for the school.

“I think it should become an annual tradition,” said Haralambieva, noting the excitement that surrounded the event for students and teachers alike.

Dealing with Depression

By Berrin Yeshil (11th grade)

On Feb. 6 Berrin Yeshil and Alexandra Sarieva visited the Mental Hospital Burgas in order to interview the hospital’s main psychiatrist, Dr. Teodor Sariev, about the reasons why people commit suicide and also the symptoms of depression. Unfortunately nowadays these things are becoming very common, especially for students.

Berrin asked how suicidal patients are treated and if it is right that people with suicidal thoughts are considered to be mentally ill. According to Dr. Sariev, the statistics show that about 90 percent of people who commit suicide have not been diagnosed with a mental illness. He added that there is no general rule about how to treat suicidal patients because suicide is a result of any of several diseases and each case is individual.

The psychiatrist then talked about depression. According to him, this is the most common cause of suicide and some of the factors can be psychological, while others are physical, such as substance abuse, or may involve changes at home, financial difficulties, conflicts, heartbreaks, problems with friends or school.

To his mind, the most effective way to reduce suicidal risk through prevention is through educating family members, social workers, and teachers on how to recognize the early signs of depression. These may include: non-ambitiousness, anti-desire, negativism, and expressing a wish to be gone from the world.

When the same interviewer wondered how many suicidal patients there are, the doctor answered that he couldn’t count them, but according to statistics on everyone, two Bulgarians per day commit suicide and 41 of every 1,000 Bulgarians have unsuccessfully tried to take their own lives.

The other interviewer, Alex, asked about what friends or relatives could do when someone is going through depression. Dr. Sariev answered that they should contact a specialist or the Bulgarian National Helpline organization, Animus, for good results (Call 116 111). He repeated the main causes of depression, and said that for teenagers it depends on how they accept or manage their problems and what problems they have.

When he was asked about the recent tragic death of a high school student in Ruse, Dr. Sariev said that every changeable mood or behavior should be considered as a potential risk of a suicidal factor, not only depression, but also psychotic disorders and substance abuse.

Dr. Sariev added some interesting facts: that there is a successful suicide every 40 seconds in the world; that men commit suicide more often than women, but women are four times more likely to try, which he said is called the “gender paradox”; and in the late 19th century in Great Britain attempting suicide was deemed to be equivalent to attempted murder and was punished by hanging!

In conclusion, if you or someone you know is struggling with depression, you should talk to the school counselor, Milena Panteleeva (Tel: #0879375123) in Room 108, any time between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. on first shift, or 10:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. on second shift; or call the national Animus hotline, 116 111.

Alexandra Sarieva (8th grade), who is the daughter of Dr. Sariev, contributed to this article.

School’s first Club Fair

By Preslava Stoyanova (9th Grade)

   On Wednesday, February 26, a club fair, sponsored by our newspaper, ELS News, will take place on the second floor of the school. The duration will be all day, from the first to last class; however, the culmination of the event will be in the 20-minute break and the class teacher period.

Newspaper Club students attend an Erasmus “Stop the Fake News” meeting

    At the club fair students and teachers will have the opportunity to take a better look at what every club does, and the club members will be the ones to demonstrate all the knowledge they’ve earned from attending club meetings.

Newspaper Club students discuss a story idea

The purpose of the fair is to raise awareness of all the interest clubs available to students and to introduce them to their activities, which can help them open even more doors to success in life.

  Here’s a list of all the clubs that have confirmed their participation in the fair to date:

* Art Club – Zlatka Koeva

* BEST (Bulgarian English Debate and Speech Tournament)/Debate, Oratory, Prose, Poetry and Duo – Zornitsa Haralambieva, Prue Salasky

* Chemistry Club – Galya Marinova

* Reborn/Entrepreneurs Club – Kostadinka Nedyalkova

* E-Learning Club – Kostadinka Nedyalkova

*Literature Club – Mariana Nedrichkova

* Newspaper Club – Prue Salasky

* Physics Problems and Physics Experiments Club – Elena Karumcheva

* Zumba – Elena Polinchova

Newspaper Club student writes about her London visit that included a stop at Madame Tussaud’s

Teenage Insomnia

By Victoria Manoleva (11th grade)

Let’s talk about insomnia since a lot of students, whether in high school or university, have come across it at least once in their life.

So what is insomnia (or sleep deprivation) exactly? Insomnia is a difficulty getting to sleep, difficulty staying asleep, waking up way too early in the morning, not getting enough hours of sleep or any kind of combination of these sleep symptoms. During the day they can often cause fatigue, concentration problems, memory disturbance, mood swings, irritability and diminished work performance. However, this doesn’t go for everyone.

Mornings are especially tough for insomniacs since they may not recognize which day it is or get confused when asked about what they’ve done the day before. Days just merge. The lack of rapid eye movement (REM)  during sleep causes restlessness and emotional instability. Late night studies are a habit of some students since they have trouble sleeping – yes, insomniacs can be intensely creative (especially after midnight). That’s because when our minds are tired, we don’t censor our thoughts which can in fact boost creativity.

Time is torture.

Worrying about sleep itself creates “anticipatory anxiety”, which prevents you from sleeping. The more you think about the fact that you’re not sleeping, that it’s too late, the further you are from falling asleep.

We are emotionally raw.

We become more sensitive to what people say to us, to what we read, to what we listen to or even to what we see. Everything can be a mood changer at this point aka constant mood swings. What’s more, the body reacts to the exhaustion by crying in order to help reduce chemical imbalance.

A later stage of insomnia is having hallucinations.  Sleep deprivation disrupts your thought process, triggering delusions.

After a long time not sleeping, no medications seem to work anymore. Although science has not proven the biological need for sleep, those who have insomnia undoubtedly suffer.

In conclusion, insomnia can become a serious medical condition if not taken care of. A lot of people suffer from insomnia daily and their number is increasing with each passing day. The worse the condition gets, the more society starts to realize how big an impact sleep deprivation has on life.

PERSONAL TIPS for coping with insomnia:

  •  Use relaxation exercises, such as focused breathing, meditation, yoga
  • Set an exact time for going to bed and for getting up
  • If you’ve been awake in bed for 20 to 30 minutes, get up and do something else
  • See a therapist and brainstorm ideas
  • Keep a journal 
  • As a last resort, see a medical doctor and ask about medication

Sources: http://sleepdisorders.about.com/od/ca… http://www.faqs.org/oc/Overcoming-Ins… http://www.doctoroz.com/videos/fact-s… http://guiltysquid.com/?p=3387 http://glennstok.hubpages.com/hub/cre… http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sleep_an… http://www.bbc.co.uk/science/humanbod… http://glennstok.hubpages.com/hub/cre… http://sleepdisorders.about.com/od/ca… http://www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/… http://healthyliving.msn.com/health-w… https://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed… http://www.netdoctor.co.uk/healthy-li… http://www.calmclinic.com/anxiety/cau… http://moodsmith.com/insomnia/ http://www.lipri.org/hypnogogichypnop…

Coronavirus Caution

by Alexandra Sarieva (8D)

The coronavirus is a virus that primarily infects animals but has recently been detected in people. The first human case appeared in October 2019 in the city of Wuhan in Hubei Province in China, with a population of 11 million. First, the previously unknown virus was temporarily named ‘2019 nCoV’. Its symptoms are commonplace and without a proper exam it can easily be confused with a common cold.

First it starts similarly to other diseases, with typical symptoms being a runny nose and a cough. But then the victims start to have a fever and eventually develop pneumonia. After several months, on Jan. 9, officials in Wuhan announced the new disease and named it novel (or new) coronavirus, or Covid-19, part of a family of viruses with the shape of a crown.

Coronavirus image from American Society for Microbiology

On Jan. 11, 2020, the first death was confirmed. Moreover, it was concluded that hundreds of other people were already diseased and that transmission from person to person was taking place. This confirmed that it could be easily spread through the air and saliva drops. In a few weeks the infection was detected in other countries, such as Japan, the United States and France, where the first death outside China occurred.

So far, according to a CDC study cited by CNN, it is considered less lethal — but more contagious — than SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome), a coronavirus that swept southern China in 2002-2003. (Ed: At time of publication there have been more than 75,000 people diagnosed with the new virus and 2,100 deaths, with just eight reported outside China, according to multiple news sources.) Still it is a threat because of the difficulty in distinguishing it from a common cold or other disease.

This disease isn’t as deadly as some maintain but it is tricky because of its unrecognizable symptoms which make it hard to diagnose without proper exams. So we should be worried as travelers that because of the virus’s ‘invisibility’ it might not have been detected and we might want to stop going on planes and use greater than usual caution.

By Newspaper Staff

QUICK FACTS ON WUHAN

Where is Wuhan? Wuhan is the capital of Hubei province in Eastern China on the Yangtze River. It is 1,150 km south of Beijing, 12 hours by car.

Population of Wuhan? 11 million, the ninth largest in China.

History: It was the capital of China in 1927 and was the wartime capital in 1937 during the Second Sino-Japanese War.

Economy: Wuhan is a transportation, manufacturing and science hub.

By Newspaper Staff

WANT A SCARE? WATCH THESE MOVIES

Virus (2019)

Pandemic (2016)

Contagion (2011)

Quarantine (2008)

28 Days Later (2007)

Outbreak (1995)

Japanese education system

Opinion piece by Victoria Manoleva (11th grade)

The Japanese education system, as perfect as it may seem, has its own disadvantages among the many benefits that it serves. It’s easy to ignore them considering all the advantages, but the flaws, as few as they are, are sometimes crucial.

Although some people may think that the Japanese education system and schools are flawless, I just can’t help but disagree since they are so consumed by being first that they simply forget to truly live and look around themselves.

The basic school system in Japan is composed of elementary school (lasting six years), middle school (three years), high school (three years), and university (four years). Education is compulsory only for the nine years of elementary and middle school, but 98% of students go on to high school.

According to “Schools – Explore Japan – Kids Web Japan – Web Japan,” Japanese children enter the first grade of elementary school in the April after their sixth birthday. ( https://web-japan.org/kidsweb/explore/schools/index.html)

While most schools and universities in the world begin their academic year in September or October, in Japan it is April that marks the start of the academic and business calendar. The first day of school often coincides with one of the most beautiful natural phenomena — the time of the cherry blossoms.

There are around 30 to 40 students in a typical elementary school class. The subjects they study include Japanese, mathematics, science, social studies, music, crafts, physical education, and home economics (to learn simple cooking and sewing skills).

More and more elementary schools have started teaching English, too. Information technology is increasingly being used to enhance education, and most schools have access to the Internet. Students also learn traditional Japanese arts like shodo (calligraphy) and haiku. Shodo involves dipping a brush in ink and using it to write kanji (characters that are used in several East Asian countries and have their own meanings) and kana (phonetic characters derived from kanji) in an artistic style. (Kids Web Japan)

Shodo

Haiku is a form of poetry developed in Japan about 400 years ago. A haiku is a short verse of 17 syllables, divided into units of five, seven, and five syllables. Haiku uses simple expressions to convey deep emotions to readers. In Japanese elementary schools, classes are divided into small teams for many activities. For example, as part of their education, every day the students clean the classrooms, halls, and yards of their school in these teams. In many elementary schools, the students eat lunch together in their classrooms, enjoying meals prepared by the school or by a local “school lunch center.” Small teams of students take turns to serve lunch to their classmates. School lunches contain a rich variety of healthy and nutritious foods, and students look forward to lunchtime. (Kids Web Japan)

Most middle and high schools require students to wear uniforms. Boys generally wear pants and jackets with stand-up collars, and girls wear a two-piece suit with sailor collar or blazers and skirts. Almost all middle school students take part in an extracurricular club activity of their choice, such as a sports team, a musical or arts group, or a science club. (aminoapps.com) Among cultural clubs, meanwhile, one that has lately gained popularity is the Go club. Go is a strategic board game played with black and white stones. After a manga (comic book) about the game was published, more and more schoolchildren started enjoying Go. Other options for students include choir and art clubs.(www.coursehero.com)

In Japanese schools, the students don’t take any exams until they reach grade four (the age of 10). They just take small tests. It is believed that the goal for the first 3 years of school is not to judge the child’s knowledge or learning, but to establish good manners and to develop their character. Children are taught to respect other people and to be gentle to animals and nature. They also learn how to be generous, compassionate, and empathetic. Besides this, the kids are taught qualities like grit, self-control, and justice. (Brightside.me)

In order to get into a good junior high school, most Japanese students enter a preparatory school or attend private after-school workshops. The classes in these schools are held in the evenings. Seeing groups of small kids returning from their extracurricular courses late in the evening is common in Japan. Japanese students have an 8-hour school day, but apart from that they study even during the holidays and on weekends. It’s no wonder that the students in this country almost never repeat grades in primary, lower secondary, or secondary school. (Brightside.me)

However, not everything about Japanese schools and their education system is so pink. There are some disadvantages as well. One of the obvious cons is that the students in Japan are exposed to considerable pressure and suffer much tension at a very early age.

The goal of the Japanese school has been to convey knowledge from the teacher to the student and uses many standardized tests and curriculums. It teaches each child the same thing to the best of their ability without worrying about each child’s individual set of skills as much. (www2.ed.gov) Even though this may seem a bad thing, Japanese levels of achievement in children are very high. Even though this achievement rate is high and has led to a success in industry in the nation, Japanese schools have seen a lack in creativity because of the way the school program is structured. In contrast with Japan, the United States is more of a “heterogeneous nation”. The culture of the United states greatly emphasises in individual and their unique set of skills and personality. Although this encourages creativity, American achievement rate is not as high as in Japanese schools. (www.kibin.com)

The following sources were used for this article:

https://brightside.me/

https://www.myjapanphone.com/

https://www.goconqr.com/en

https://www.kibin.com/

Students react to dress code

By Preslava Stoyanova (9th grade)

In 2019 the school dress code was introduced. The introduction was followed by anger and, at first, some students had trouble dressing accordingly. With time they managed to accept the changes and the dress code was strictly followed.

Ripped jeans, track suits, short tops, mini skirts and shorts became forbidden. Students are allowed to wear tops, but not too short and in one of these colors: white, blue, red and gray. As for bottoms, students are allowed to wear skirts, jeans or trousers in white, blue, red, black or gray.

 One year later, we asked some ninth-graders to share their opinions on the topic and see whether the dress code is still seen as a negative change.

“Do you think the dress code was a necessary change and why?

“No it wasn’t necessary in my opinion, they created a lot of stress and confusion among the students right in the middle of the school year.”- Nikolay Tonchev

“Well, in my opinion it was a necessary change because we are at school and it’s not good to represent your school in an Adidas tracksuit, right?”- Angel Sinkov

“I do not think it was necessary – it’s our duty as students to go to school properly dressed up; however, there shouldn’t be color restrictions. Wearing yellow or green wouldn’t harm anyone.”- Denitsa Kaloyanova

“I don’t think that the dress code was a needed change. Yes there were people who dressed inappropriately but I don’t think that we have to dress in certain colors. And my reasoning behind it is that not everyone has the money to buy new clothing.”- Kalina Kandrova

“I do not think so”- Ivaila Veselinova

“Was it easy for you to get used to wearing the dress code?”

“No, I couldn’t get used to it and I continued coming to school in sweatpants and ripped jeans for a whole month after the change, but now I do follow the dress code to some extent.” – Nikolay Tonchev

“I spent lots of money on clothes because of the dress code. Overall, it wasn’t hard for me to get used to it, however finding a certain type of T-shirts and jeans can be extremely expensive.”- Denitsa Kaloyanova

“No it wasn’t and I still haven’t gotten used to it.”-Kalina Kandrova

“I’m definitely not used to dressing accordingly yet.”- Ivaila Veselinova

“Would you rather wear uniforms?”

 “I don’t like uniforms, I prefer wearing jeans and red shirts – they are formal as well and more convenient.”- Angel Sinkov

“No, no and a thousand times no! Everyone walking in the hallway dressed the same as the others…No thank you!”- Nikolay Tonchev

‘’Yes, because I won’t spend tons of money on buying new clothes according to the dress code and I will save time”- Denitsa Kaloianova

‘‘No, I would rather wear uniforms if they are skirts and flannels with a tie; I wouldn’t want to wear a uniform.“- Kalina Kandrova

“Yes, I would.”- Ivaila Veselinova

“If you could add one more color to the allowed colors, which one would it be?”

“I would add black, of course!”- Angel Sinkov

“I don’t really follow the color restrictions. I just wear jeans. In terms of colors I put the first shirt I grab in the wardrobe. But if I begin to follow it, maybe black.”- Nikolay Tonchev

“I’d add pink because it is a beautiful color that symbolizes kindness and happiness. We are happier when there are more colors surrounding us.”- Denitsa Kaloianova

“I would add black.”- Kalina Kandrova

“If it was up to me to decide, I wouldn’t add any color restrictions”- Ivaila Veselinova

 Judging by the students’ answers to these questions, we can see that they all have different opinions, but share one thing in common – adding more colors. As Denitsa said, “We are happier when there are more colors surrounding us.”

Proper clothing is significant to our education and discipline, however, the world is more than blue, white, red and grey. And as Kalina has stated, “not everyone has the money to buy new clothing.” Some students still have difficulty dressing accordingly; however, they’ve accepted it.

Note: The full uniform and dress code requirements can be found on the school website, www.gpaeburgas.org under the tab “School documents,” starting on p. 19. Here’s an excerpt:

 V. ОБЛЕКЛО НА УЧЕНИКА  Чл. 84. (1) Ученикът е длъжен да се явява в училището и на училищни мероприятия с облекло и във вид, които съответстват на положението му и на добрите нрави.  (2) От 15.09.2019 година се въвежда задължителен дрескод за всички ученици, приети в гимназията преди 2019г. (9-ти, 10-ти, 11-ти и 12-ти клас) до тяхното завършване на гимназията.  (3) ДОПУСТИМИТЕ ЕЛЕМЕНТИ НА ОБЛЕКЛОТО за явяване в училище са, както следва:  1. Момчета:  1.1.тениска, риза, блуза, пуловер, поло с дълъг или с къс ръкав в един от следните цветове: бял, червен, син, сив;  1.2.панталон/дънки в един от следните цветове: черен, тъмносин, тъмносив, тъмнокафяв.  2.Момичета:  2.1.тениска, риза, блуза, пуловер, поло с дълъг или с къс ръкав в един от следните цветове: бял, червен, син, сив;  2.2.панталон/дънки/пола/рокля в един от следните цветове: черен, тъмносин, тъмносив, тъмнокафяв.  3.Тениска с логото и името на гимназията.  4. Униформено облекло, посочено в чл.84 (5) от ПДУ. (4) НЕДОПУСТИМИТЕ ЕЛЕМЕНТИ НА ОБЛЕКЛОТО и външния вид на учениците са: къс, 3/4 и 7/8 панталон; панталони с ниска талия, панталони тип шалвари, размъкнати, нарязани, увиснали, в ярка цветова гама и с шарки; анцуг и трикотажен клин; дълбоко деколте; къса пола; къса блуза и бюстие; прозрачна дреха; потник; джапанки; нецензурни изображения и текст по дрехите и аксесоарите; дрехи, рекламиращи алкохол, наркотици, тютюнопушене, секс и насилие; силен грим. 

Uniforms are here!

By Alexandra Sarieva (8th grade)

Jan. 20, 2020

On Jan. 15, 2020, Ivo Radev and I interviewed the principal, Jacqueline Neycheva, on one of the topics that has bothered our school for the past few months: The school uniform.

Our principal started the interview by mentioning that the day we chose was the birthday of our school patron, poet Geo Milev.

Ivo: Can you tell us why it was decided to include a uniform in the school dress code?

Neycheva: It was a decision that was taken quite logically by both the teachers and the students because it was discussed with them. We believe that having a uniform is declaring our unity as a school and trying to build the image of a modern school so this is how the idea occurred in general; most colleges and we all know universities that are designed by our students have uniforms for centuries and that has never been a problem,

Alex: So, this could be called a school decision?

Neycheva: It is! It can’t be called anything but that.

Alex: Is the idea of having uniforms to bring the school back to the time when its reputation was the best?

Neycheva: It is my ambition, but being a lonely soldier is a failure predicted; I think we all — students, teachers and parents — should do our best to bring the school back to its reputation and the best it had. We agreed to support this idea because, as a school, we had to be united to achieve anything. We all create the school, our unity and ambitions create the image of Geo Milev. If we stay behind anything and fight for it, we will achieve the wanted goal.

The girls’ uniform for 8th graders; red collared shirt with logo; navy jacket with logo

Ivo: Can you tell us if the parents and faculty also wanted this? What was their reaction to the school uniforms?

Boys’ uniform for 8th-graders; long-sleeved navy T-shirt with school logo

Neycheva: … Everything has settled down and the new students will wear uniforms and the others will have a dress code. Going back to the reactions we had doesn’t help the image of the school, so I disagree with this in general. So, if we send positive information we will succeed. Otherwise, it won’t have any benefit for us, do you think?

She’s right. If we tried to unite the school with negativism, well it wouldn’t be a success. Of course, there will always be disagreements because of opposing opinions. Some will say yes to an idea, others will not. We may be one school, but we’re not one person.

I’m not saying we should agree to every idea, but at least to support it if it’s good for our school. Let’s think about the school, not only us.

Ivo Radev (8th Grade) contributed to this article.

Note: The full uniform guidelines can be found at the school website, www.gpaeburgas.org under the tab “School documents” and then click on the red document, Rules 2019/2020, and go to p. 19. Below is an excerpt:

 V. ОБЛЕКЛО НА УЧЕНИКА 

  (5) От 15.09.2019 за всички новоприети учениците (8-ми клас през учебната 2019-2020 година) до тяхното завършване на гимназията се въвежда задължително униформено облекло за явяване в училище и на училищни мероприятия (по индивидуален избор за цвят и тип облекло – блуза, тениска, суитчер и панталон), както следва:  1. Момчета:  1.1. тениска – с обло деколте (тъмносиня, червена, бяла), 100% памук, с дълъг и къс ръкав, с емблема (логото и името на гимназията);  1.2. блуза тип „лакоста“ – с дълъг ръкав, с цветен кант на яката и маншетите, 100% памук (тъмносиня с червен кант, червена с тъмносин кант, бяла с тъмносин кант), с емблема (логото и името на гимназията);  1.3. блуза тип „лакоста“ – с къс ръкав, с цветен кант на яката, 100% памук (тъмносиня с червен кант, червена с тъмносин кант, бяла с тъмносин кант), с емблема (логото и името на гимназията);  1.4. суитчер с качулка (зимен) – 100% тъмносиня триконечна вата, с памучна подплата на цялото тяло, с емблема (логото и името на гимназията);  1.5. суитчер с качулка (летен) – 100% тъмносиня еластична вата, с памучна подплата само на качулката, с емблема (логото и името на гимназията);  1.6. панталон/дънки в един от следните цветове: черен, тъмносин, тъмносив, тъмнокафяв. 2. Момичета:  2.1. тениска с обло деколте (тъмносиня, червена, бяла), 100% памук, с дълъг и къс ръкав, с емблема (логото и името на гимназията);  2.2. блуза тип „лакоста“ – с дълъг ръкав, с цветен кант на яката и маншетите, 100% памук (тъмносиня с червен кант, червена с тъмносин кант, бяла с тъмносин кант), с емблема (логото и името на гимназията);  2.3. блуза тип „лакоста“ – с къс ръкав, с цветен кант на яката, 100% памук (тъмносиня с червен кант, червена с тъмносин кант, бяла с тъмносин кант), с емблема (логото и името на гимназията);  2.4. суитчер с качулка (зимен) – 100% тъмносиня триконечна вата, с памучна подплата на цялото тяло, с емблема (логото и името на гимназията);  2.5. суитчер с качулка (летен) 100% тъмносиня еластична вата, с памучна подплата само на качулката, с емблема (логото и името на гимназията);  2.6. панталон/дънки /пола/рокля в един от следните цветове: черен, тъмносин, тъмносив, тъмнокафяв.  3.Тениска с логото и името на гимназията.  (6) Въвежда се униформено облекло за представителни събития на училищните отбори и делегации.  (7) Ученикът с облекло в съответствие с чл. 84, ал.2 и ал. 3 (с изключение на облеклото съгласно чл. 84, ал.3, т.4) е длъжен да носи на територията на училището и по време на представителни събития идентификационния си бадж/значка с логото и името на гимназията.