Making our mark in any medium... the official student news of Normal Community High School


Making our mark in any medium... the official student news of Normal Community High School


Making our mark in any medium... the official student news of Normal Community High School


Signage will be added around the building to replace outdated design like the orange and black entrance to the junior hallway.

Ground floor undergoes cosmetic renovations

Norah Wagoner, Staff Writer Jan 5, 2021

NCHS is undergoing major cosmetic renovations as custodians paint the first floor of the building. With students returning to remote learning in November, the custodial staff began painting the atrium...

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The Madrigals 20th-anniversary show was recorded live on the last day of in-person learning during fall semester in place of the traditional dinner and dessert shows.

20th anniversary Madrigals performance goes remote

Myra Saulat and Maggie Stiennen Dec 17, 2020

COVID-19 forced this year's Madrigal singers to perform their 20th-anniversary concert without an audience, recording an emergency performance on Nov. 17 in preparation for Unit 5's return to remote learning. Madrigals...

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Isabelle McCormick, who hopes to continue playing volleyball in college, passes during a 2019 match against Bloomington.

College recruitment made more difficult by COVID-19 pandemic

Emma Conover, Staff Writer Dec 16, 2020

High school athletes often dream of competing at the college level --but the odds are not in their favor. The reality is less than 17% of the 8 million high school athletes go on to play in college. Without...

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With the 2020 election more contentious than those in modern memory, Normal Community students react to the outcome.

Students react to 2020 election

Lauren Cutler, Staff Writer Dec 15, 2020

The Electoral College voted Monday, Dec. 14 to certify the Presidential election for Democrat Joe Biden. Biden’s 306 electoral votes surpass the 270 required to win the presidency. President Donald...

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Google applications including the suite of programs Unit 5 relies on for remote learning began experiencing a service outage early Monday morning.

Google services, applications experience widespread outage

Inkspot Staff, Inkspot Staff Dec 14, 2020

Multiple Google services and applications began experiencing a significant outage early Monday morning, with users encountering error messages when attempting to access the affected services. The platforms...

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The Fiesta Ranchera location on College Ave. is one of the Fiesta locations run by the Canchola family.

Local business restrictions impact NCHS students

With Illinois reverting to Phase 3 of the ‘Restore Illinois Resurgence Mitigation Plan’ on Friday, Nov. 20 for the unforeseeable future, small businesses face another round of mitigation requirements. The...

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File photo: The 2020 winter wrestling season is currently rescheduled to begin during the IHSA summer season.

IHSA pauses winter sports: Wrestling moves to summer season

Lily Wells and Keyshawn Byers Dec 11, 2020

Before IHSA Executive Director Craig Anderson’s Nov. 19 announcement that “all high school sports and activities will cease by November 20 for … a short-term pause” low risk winter sports were...

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The graphic encouraged people to support the fight against SBG by attending the Unit 5 Board meeting.

NCHS students, staff speak out against standards-based grading

Jonah Kramer, Sports Editor Dec 11, 2020

“As a teacher it feels like I’m drowning and instead of throwing me a life preserver the district is throwing me lead weights,” Mr. Patrick Lawler, a social studies teacher at NCHS, said at the Unit...

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Class of 1997 graduate Jarrett Johnson is nominated for Grammy award for a song release this summer.

NCHS alum Jarrett Johnson nominated for Grammy

Charlotte Calmes, Editor-in-Chief Dec 4, 2020

NCHS alum Jarrett Johnson, a member of the Class of 1997, was nominated for Best Arrangement - Instrumental or A Capella at the 63rd annual Grammy Awards. “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” arranged...

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While students may not have access to counselors in-person, they are available through digital appointments to help seniors navigate the college application process.

Counselors offer college planning advice during pandemic

Kennedy Coe, Staff Writer Dec 3, 2020

With stay-at-home orders and social distancing mandates, college-bound seniors planning their futures in an uncertain world are finding the process difficult to manage.  “The pandemic has upended...

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Unit 5 announces continuation of remote learning through end of semester

Unit 5 announces continuation of remote learning through end of semester

Inkspot Staff, Inkspot Staff Dec 1, 2020

Unit 5 will continue remote learning for the remainder of the fall semester, according to a district email sent to parents this morning. When Unit 5 returned to remote learning on Wed., Nov. 18, the...

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Nearly 1/4 NCHS students and staff surveyed said they will be gathering with people outside of their household for Thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving amidst a pandemic; ISU public health expert weighs in

Jonah Kramer, Sports Editor Nov 25, 2020

Dr. Jackie Lanier would love to see her five siblings on November 26. However, there will be no holiday get together this Thanksgiving. “It’s going to look really different, and it should unfortunately,”...

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Unit 5 will return to remote learning for all students on Wednesday, Nov. 18. Students and staff share their thoughts on the experience.

NCHS faculty, students on remote learning

Nayonika Banerjee, Senior Staff Reporter Nov 17, 2020
With the transition back to remote learning effective Wednesday, Nov. 18, NCHS students and faculty weigh in on how successful remote learning has been thus far. For Social Studies teacher Mr. Kevin Shackley, remote learning hasn’t been easy. The fifth-year teacher compared teaching remotely to juggling, adding, “I don’t know how to juggle.”  Orchestra teacher Ms. Melissa Siebenthal shared Shackley’s struggles with teaching remotely. It has “been really, really hard, especially given the nature of orchestra,” Siebenthal said, who conducts on Zoom as muted students play along.  While “every day is a technical difficulty” for Siebenthal. She recognizes that “we’re really in unchartered territory, we’re just kind of pioneers, and it’s groundbreaking, actually, because people have never done this before.”
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NCHS teachers offer different views on the past and present of the U of I mascot.

Normal Community staff, University of Illinois graduates react to Chief, Kingfisher

Jonah Kramer, Sports Editor Nov 17, 2020

The University of Illinois Academic Senate passed a resolution in September, endorsing the Belted Kingfisher as the school’s mascot in place of Chief Illiniwek, who was retired in 2007. NCHS faculty...

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Actors of the NCHS play, Ghosts in the Machine by Eric Coble posed for the screen capture during their Zoom rehearsal.

‘The Show Must Go On’

Drama programs collaborate to host virtual theatre festival
Olivia Plangger, Co-Editor-in-Chief Nov 16, 2020

When faced with the inability to perform on stage this year, the Bloomington-Normal high school theatre programs proved "the show must go on," according to NCHS theatre director Mrs. Kevin Vernon as...

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