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Hays Free Press
Kyle, Texas
March 15, 2017     Hays Free Press
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March 15, 2017

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+ Local author releases new book about Blanco River. - Page 1C Hays Free Press March 15, 2017 Page 3B I1 BY SAMANTHA SMITH "The best thing for us is the opportunity to say 'yes'." It took a nationally ranked Hays High water ski student for the Hays CISD board to make were participating in a changes to its excused UIL event. absence policy. According to school The Hays CISD school board member Merideth board passed a resolution Keller, speaking on her last month stating thatown behalf, the creation students participating of the resolution came in non-UIL events will about in response to the no longer receive an needs of one Hays CISD unexcused absence on student in particular, their record and instead 17-year-old Rebel will have the absence senior Emma Morgan, excused as if the student a nationally qualifying -Merideth Keller, HCISD board trustee is the opportunity to say 'yes'," Keller said. Morgan's dad, Matt Morgan, said Emma has been water skiing since she was eight years old. However, the family only water skier, ran into issues with her Keller said the attendance at school resolution would go into when she got older and effect immediately but started qualifying for she was unsure of the bigger events. administrative details Morgan said his involved in the creation daughter, a senior at of a water ski class except Hays High, represented that the school board's the U.S. on the resolution detailed that a Canadian-American faculty member oversee (CANAM) team in the elective course. "The best thing for us WATERSKI, 4B PHOTO COURTESY OF MAll" MORGAN Emma Morgan and her coach Jimmy Siemers about to jump on the Yarra River in Melbourne Australia at Moomba Masters. Anti-d program conseq 13Y MOSES LEOS III A alOOk of shock howed on the ces of Hays High seniors Damian Fiscal, Kayler Erwin and Bre- anna Rodriguez as they were each doused with varying amounts of syr- upy fake blood Thursday. The concoction, part of the Hollywood-style effect of the Shattered Dreams program, stained clothes and wasn't ex- actly comfortable. But for the three and many others who took part in the event, what it all signified - the fake blood, the wrecked vehi- cles - was a chance to hit home to this generation the realities of drinking and distracted driving. Shattered Dreams, which began in Hays CISD in 2001, is a pro- gram meant to raise awareness and deter drinking and driving among teens, said Hays County Pct. 2 Justice of the Peace Beth Smith. She brought the program to Hays CISD after reading Wimberley ISD was having a similar program in 2000. After watching thee program with her daughters, Smith talked district offi- cials into organizing their own program. Ever since then, Smith has helped organize Shattered Dreams, which is funded entirely through sponsorships. Smith said she has been involved in eight Shat- tered Dreams programs, with five of those at Hays High and four at Lehman High, which opened in 2004. The program consists of two experiences. The first involves a mock accident scene involving teen actors who experi- ence a fatal drinking and driving collision. To make it as real as possible, Smith enlists the help of various law enforcement and emergency officials who handle such inci- dents on a daily basis. The second experience extends to the aftermath of the accident and reac- tion of those who partici- pated in the event. Smith said 24 to 25 stu- A select few are chosen to participate in the accident scene. One student, who is the "drunk driver," is arrested and taken to jail. "die" at the scene, or are transported to a hospital. The second part of the accident experience extends to the aftermath of the who participated in the event. (Browse and buy photos at dents are chosen to par- ticipate and are selected through an application process. Certain aspects are considered when students are selected. Many become the "liv- ing dead," which signify teens who die in alcohol- related accidents. Those students are pulled out of class by a "grim reaper" and helper. In some Shat- tered Dreams programs, a uniformed officer announces the mock death of that student and reads an obituary that is prewritten. That student then goes back to class, but is not allowed to speak to classmates. A select few are chosen to participate in the acci- dent scene. One student, who is the "drunk driver," is arrested and taken to jail. Others are victims who either "die" at the scene, or are transported to a hospital. Smith said some students who pariticpate have parents who may be alcoholics, or know a family member or friend who has been in, or has died of, an alcohol-relat- ed accident. Fiscal, who played the role of a victim in the crash scene, said he opted to participate as the experience hit close to home. "It's cool because I have a lot of family mem- bers who have been in a lot of accidents because of drinking and driving," Fiscal said about being a part of the Shattered Dreams experience. To prepare for the actual accident scene, Smith enlists the help PHOTOS BY MOSES LEOS III Others are victims who either accident and reaction of those of makeup artists, and said he researches bodily remember what it sym- in Hays CISD Shattered Hays CISD graduates, injuries associated with bolizes," DeLeon said. "I Dreams since 2001. Ion Claeton and Andrew car accidents to ensure have to pretend this is a C|aeton said he's seen DeLeon. the makeup he appliesvictim of a car wreck. It's "way too many" people The two work to make is as realistic as possible, very sad to look at." die from drinking and the victims in the ac- The focus is to provide a Claeton, who is heavily driving. cident look as authentic more visceral impact on involved in recovery pro- "We want to wake as possible. DeLeon, students, DeLeon said. grams and has worked someone up and make who has volunteered in "It's fun doing all of the in commercial haunted four Shattered Dreams, makeup, but I have tohouses, has participated SHATTERED DREAMS, 4B