Bernal News The Student News Site of Bernal Intermediate School Tue, 12 May 2020 19:17:58 +0000 en-US hourly 1 School Closure and Distance Learning Mon, 11 May 2020 17:35:37 +0000
Mr. Barham gives his fifth period science class a lecture about the novel Corona Virus in place of the initial class plan, which was for students to continue working on their bridge projects. Students were originally given until the following Monday to complete their constructions, however because of the school closure, most students opted to take their projects home to finish and bring in if school eventually resumed. Kailey Kleiner says, “I guess it kind of worked out. My group was on track, but the extra time will be nice because we can make our bridge even better.”
Andrew Hoang (8) spreads the word to Nathan Wong (8) about the temporary closure of school. Prior that day, the Santa Clara County Public Health Department and the Santa Clara County Office of Education held a press conference, in which all school within the county were instructed to close due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Nathan Wong said, “I think the closures were a good decision. Plus, we get a break.”

Lunchtime on Friday, March 13 was abuzz with rumors, as news spread around campus of the latest impact that COVID-19 had made on Bernal students.  Later that day, fifth period teachers communicated to their students the outcome of a meeting held just a few hours earlier, in which the Oak Grove School District announced that they, along with all public schools within Santa Clara County, had been instructed to temporarily close until April 6th.  Later, on March 26, the closure was extended until May 1st.  These decisions were made to protect staff and students from the COVID-19 outbreak, and to reduce its spread until districts arranged a safer way to congregate. That same Friday, Mr Barham addressed the school closures to his eighth graders.  “I know as students, you all think this is awesome, but as a teacher there are a ton of other things I consider.  Lots of kids come to school because they don’t have a great home life.  For them, school is what provides them two reliable meals a day, plus childcare while their parents are at work.”  

The prolonged suspension of school also sparked issues regarding teachers’ class plans for the rest of the year.  At the time of the initial closure, schools were to be closed for at least one month, so teachers had to rearrange, cut, and modify units.  Some teachers offered optional work for students to complete during the first period of the closure.  However, once Governor Newsom announced in April that school would not be resuming, distance learning was implemented, during which students met with their teachers weekly via Google Meetings, were assigned work regularly, and were given either a “pass” or “no mark” in place of a letter grade for term six.    

The students of Bernal expressed various opinions on the school closure.  Minh Pham (8) disliked the leniency of distance learning, and said, “Honestly, although it basically gives us a break for the rest of the year, it’s more difficult to learn.  Teachers tend to teach their lessons more vaguely, so I have to learn certain topics on my own.”  In addition to impacting students academically, the abrupt end to school affected their social and personal lives, as students would not get to participate in end of year activities such as the talent show and yearbook signing party.  8th graders were deprived of their Washington D.C. trip, Great America trip, and promotion.  Brenda Duong commented, “I am disappointed that I won’t be able to enjoy the last moments of school with my friends, but I know things could be a lot worse.”

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Boys Volleyball Informational Meeting held at Lunch, 1/28 Tue, 28 Jan 2020 22:36:58 +0000 The Boys Volleyball team informational meeting was held today at lunch.

Coach Haneta will take 10 players for the team; both 7th and 8th graders.

Tryouts will be held next week after school on Tuesday, 2/3; Wednesday, 2/4; and Thursday, 2/5.


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The Soccer Boys Take Second Place in Championships! Wed, 08 May 2019 00:10:17 +0000 “And he scores!” First place in the league, the boys won all their seven games.  

It was Coach Mueller’s first year coaching for Bernal’s soccer team, and he guided the boys to success, providing them with strategies on how to defeat the other teams. Their long and demanding practices on Monday through Thursday payed off when they won the first playoff game at Sheppard against Ocala.

The second playoff game that they won against Herman led them to the final round, the championships. The soccer team had never made it to the championships in Bernal history.

The boys battled long and hard against Boeger’s team. Bernal lost by 2 goals. As the Boeger boys scored on their first goal, you could hear the voice of Coach Mueller from the sidelines, encouraging them, saying things like, “The game is not over.”

Even though the boys soccer team took second place in the championships, they broke the record of being undefeated in their season.

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Spring Break Q&A: Gisele Estrada on Her Spring Break Trip Tue, 07 May 2019 23:36:38 +0000 Spring break was just last week, and many students had plans for vacations, like Mexico, San Diego, and Disneyland or Disney World. One student, Gisele Estrada, went on a week-long trip to a different continent.


Q: Where did you go for spring break?

A: I went to Rinku Town in Japan.


Q: What was your favorite part about the trip?

A: My favorite part was probably going on the Ferris wheel at this red building, I don’t remember the name, but it was huge and we got to take photos.


Q: Were there any bad parts? If so, what were they?

A: The flight back was definitely the worst since it was really long and boring.


Q: Tell me about the trip. What did you do?

A: Overall, the trip was nice. On the first day, we walked around the town, Rinku Town. Then we just looked around. The hotel was pretty cool. On the second day, we went to a bunch of places, mostly because we went on the train, which was pretty cool. We went to the Pokemon Center, then the big red building with the Ferris wheel that I told you about, and we ate lots of ice cream. Then we had to go back, which was confusing. On the third day, we went on the train again, and then we just walked around the city that we were in. We had Taiyaki, which was a fish-shaped pancake which was nice and pretty good. On the fourth day, we went to an owl cafe. I got to hold an owl. After that, we walked around until we found a place to eat. We also went to the CupNoodles Museum.  On the fourth, fifth, and sixth days, we mostly just walked around different cities. We also went to a cat cafe. On the seventh day, we went around looking for souvenirs. We also went to the Kit-Kat store and got a bunch of Kit-Kats. On the eighth day, we had to go back, which wasn’t fun, because the plane ride was really long.


Q: Lastly, what was your favorite thing that you ate there?

A: My favorite thing to eat was the ice cream because it tasted really good.

Q: Would you recommend the trip to others?
A: It was really fun, so yes, but it depends on what their interests are sometimes. It’s just really beautiful there.

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“The Silence” Movie Review Tue, 07 May 2019 22:52:50 +0000 *This review contains spoilers*

“The Silence” is a horror movie about Ally, who is deaf, and her family surviving an apocalyptic type world. They find out that a cave that was sealed for years has been reopened and millions of demon-like bats, called vesps, have been released among the country. They are blind and rely on hearing their prey, hence the movie title, since Ally and her family are experienced enough they rely on communicating using sign language.

Along the way they encounter many horrific scenes, such as people being eaten alive by the vesps and a cult that has their eye on Ally. As well as their family members sacrificing themselves for their loved ones. Their challenges and hard decisions pay off in the end as they reach a place called “The refuge” where she reunites with her boyfriend, Rob.

This film is very scary and one of those movies you wouldn’t expect much of considering it is produced by Netflix. Netflix normally makes great romance movies and isn’t very well known for producing horror films. For this movie being one of its firsts it makes me very excited for the horror movies to come. With all the special effects used it seems very realistic and it adds to the grotesque film. In all i think it has a strong plot with few holes and stays true to the genre it has been placed in.

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What Does It Take to Get into Leadership? Tue, 07 May 2019 22:32:18 +0000 Leadership is one of the most anticipated electives for students. With its many areas in trying to make the school better place, activities include planning rallies, helping with lunch games, coming up with spirit days, and much more.

Mr. Beaulieu, former head of Leadership says, “From my time at Bernal, usually over 120 7th graders apply to Leadership every year.” This time, for the first time in years, Mr. Beaulieu will not be the leadership teacher for the 2019-2020 school year, and instead, Mr. Medina and Mrs. Johnson will take Mr. Beaulieu’s place, which saddened many people around Bernal.


So what does it take to get into Leadership in the first place?

7th graders have a series of requirements that gives them a better chance of being selected, since everyone in the class is handpicked.

Leadership differs from many of the other electives since it is all 8th grade, and students have a chance to apply instead of randomly being placed in Art, Design and Modeling, Chess, or Spanish.

7th graders have the opportunity to apply a few months before school ends, and this year, applications were given out in late April, just before Spring Break. These requirements include a series of questions about why they want to be in Leadership, what “leader” qualities they will bring to the class, new ideas to increase student participation, and a problem they see as  well as a solution.

With all of these fundamental questions, you are also needed to receive two different teacher recommendations for good measure. Leadership students are the models for the school, so it is necessary to take extra precautions in order to make sure that the students chosen are appropriate, since they are setting the example for future 7th graders.

Sofia Marino, a student who applied this year said, “I really want to be in Leadership because I enjoy planning and organizing. Also I think me being an addition to the class would bring school spirit and fun activities to the campus. I really want to be in it because it sounds so fun to plan rallies and events for our school, but I’m kind of nervous to see whether I get in or not.”

Because the due date for applications passed, now students can only cross their fingers, and hope that they are chosen to be the 8th grade model students, in 2019-2020 Leadership.

Group interviews are being held May 6-10 during lunch in room 113, and the class roster is due to be announced early the following week.  Note: There is a poll embedded within this post, please visit the site to participate in this post's poll.

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Washington DC Trip: Students’ Perspectives Tue, 07 May 2019 21:51:12 +0000 The Washington DC trip allows you to learn and have fun at the same time!  Instead of sitting in class reading your textbook you get to go out there and witness history.  The 8th graders get to go to fun places such as Washington DC and New York.

“It was a lot of fun and the sites we saw were very nice and made great pictures but we got back to the hotel too late, we had to wake up early, and there’s a lot of walking.” -Angelina Mai, 8th grader


The Washington DC trip was very tiring for most students, mainly because of walking too much and waking up early.  However, most students had lots of fun as well during the DC trip.

“Great Wolf Lodge and Times Square was my favorite part.” -Vanessa Lu, 8th grader

“It was fun I saw a lot of cool stuff.” -Isis Franzen, 8th grader


Here is some advice to those who are planning to go to the DC trip next year!

“Stay out of trouble and have fun!  Also eat your green beans”- Cedric Pinto, 8th grader

“Bring your sneakers ready to walk a lot, most importantly bring food like cup o noodles since they have hot water and a microwave at the hotel” -Ana Santos, 8th grader

Overall the trip was exhausting but long lasting and enjoyable!

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CAASPP Testing at Bernal Tue, 07 May 2019 21:26:26 +0000 On Monday, April 19th, all of Bernal’s students began the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP).  The purpose of these series of tests is to measure what a student knows and is able to do.  The tests have a variety of different questions in various formats (essay, multiple choice, etc.).  The results allow students to get the support they need by identifying any lack in skill or knowledge.  

As of now, all Bernal students have started their ELA CAT test.  The recent testing has resulted in changes in our regular schedule.  Bernal will be on block schedule for six days within the next five weeks.  This means that we will only three periods on those specific days. In addition, we will be spending the corresponding class periods completing these tests, and will not spend time working on our regular classwork.  

Although testing may seem tedious, and at times even pointless, there are many benefits to taking the CAASPP tests.  In addition to closing achievement gaps, standardized testing also allows the skill levels of students to be objectively compared to students from other areas, which lets schools determine what they need to improve upon.  Testing is also linked to standards that may ensure the mastery of grade level skills. It can even serve as motivation for students.

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Latest Music: Spring 2019 Tue, 07 May 2019 20:42:23 +0000 There are many songs that are popular these days, but there are five songs in particular that students enjoy listening to at Bernal Intermediate School. The most popular song that students listen to is “Old Town Road” by Lil Nas X Featuring  Billy Ray Cyrus (37%). The second popular track is “Thotiana” by Blueface (23%). The next favored song is “Sunflower” by Post Malone and Swae Lee (20%). After that song, the most preferred track would be “Boy With Luv” by BTS Featuring Halsey (12%). The last recommended song is “7 Rings” by Ariana Grande (8%). Overall, there are plenty of amazing songs but these are just a few that students at Bernal enjoy listening to.


  1. “Old Town Road” by Lil Nas X Featuring Billy Ray Cyrus  
  2. “Thotiana” by Blueface
  3.  “Sunflower” by Post Malone and Swae Lee
  4.  “Boy With Luv” by Bts Featuring Halsey
  5. “7 Rings” by Ariana Grande
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World Press Freedom Day Tue, 07 May 2019 19:04:29 +0000

No democracy is complete without access to transparent and reliable information. It is the cornerstone for building fair and impartial institutions, holding leaders accountable and speaking truth to power. ”

— António Guterres, United Nations Secretary-General

May 3rd was World Press Freedom Day.


World Press Freedom Day was made by the UN General Assembly in 1993 following a Recommendation made by the twenty-sixth session of UNESCO’s General Conference in 1991.

The way to rate a countries press freedom is in a numerical order, the higher you get the less press freedom the country has. On this day people pay tribute to media members around the world that have died while serving as a journalist.

Click HERE to see a Map freedom of Press  in the world

“No democracy is complete without access to transparent and reliable information. It is the cornerstone for building fair and impartial institutions, holding leaders accountable and speaking truth to power.” — António Guterres, United Nations Secretary-General

The United Nation’s World Press Freedom Day events page

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