Throughout the past century, The Campanile has relentlessly covered every newsworthy event inside and outside of the school community. This edition of the Centennial Report explores the aftermath of World War II and its effects on Paly, as well as some issues that persist today.
World War II heavily impacted many students in the 1940s. A big concern was what students would do after graduation in war time. A meeting was held for upperclassman students and their parents about possible paths after high school.
Lowry S. Howard, then president of Menlo School and Junior College, spoke about what should be considered in planning for the future. John Bunn, who was the dean of men at Stanford University, outlined important views students should keep in mind during wartime. J. P. O’Rourke, supervisor of defense training for the Moffett Field area, also educated students on various wartime industries they could go into immediately after graduation.
An English teacher named Chris Rich took leave from Paly because of his increasing concern about the nuclear arms race. Rich believed that nuclear weapons were a threat to the existence of the universe and was concerned about the future should nuclear arms continue to be built. He planned to spend about a year and a half educating America’s youth about the dangers of nuclear weapons through a non-profit organization called Creative Initiative Foundation. He hoped to help resolve the nuclear arms situation by educating people of its consequences and forcing then-President Ronald Reagan to stop his nuclear arms’ development policies.
In 1986, the United States launched bombing attacks on Libya to combat terrorist activities, which significantly decreased tourism due to fear. Several people in the Palo Alto community canceled or change their summer plans due to the possible threat to their safety. A poll conducted by The Campanile found that 44 percent of students approved of the bombings and 47 percent disapproved. They also found that 18 percent of students would not travel to Europe if given the chance in light of the violence in Libya.
The Palo Alto Unified District (PAUSD) Board of Education began considering a new student interaction harassment policy, one specifically relating to race or gender. The policy was proposed by then Associated Superintendent of Human Resources and Administration Patricia Einfelt. A year and a half prior, an employee harassment policy was implemented, but the District realized something had to be done to protect the students. The goal was to “provide a school environment free from all forms of discrimination, including sexual harassment.”
Visit palyjournalismarchive.pausd.org to read more of The Campanile’s past articles.