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The Student News Site of Lynbrook High School

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The Student News Site of Lynbrook High School

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Teachers and students honored at Feb. 27 board meeting

What you need to know:

  • Anna Kirsh, ASB, Aletheia and Red Cross Club adviser and World Literature teacher, was selected as the Certified Teacher of the Year
  • Adrina Tran was selected as the 2023-24 Foundation Scholar, and Andrew Li and Yusuf Gadelrab were chosen as Poster students for the 2023-24 school year.
  • The drama club was also honored for their courage to undertake contemporary themes such as academic pressure as well as violence and homophobia.


English teacher Anna Kirsh, three distinguished Lynbrook students and the drama department were honored at the FUHSD Board Meeting on Feb. 27 for their respective achievements. 

Poster Student Yusuf Gadelrab

Yusuf Galdelrab (Photo by Claire Guo).

Senior and star athlete Yusuf Gadelrab moved to Lynbrook in September of his junior year. Despite having to adjust to a new environment in a short amount of time, he is one of two students nominated for the honor of becoming Poster student. With this new title, Yusuf will represent Lynbrook in school posters and pamphlets distributed throughout the 2024-25 school year.

“I’m proud of it,” Gadelrab said. “I didn’t know that I was going to be nominated, but it’s cool that I got it.”

At Lynbrook, Gadelrab has competed on the wrestling and football teams. He has a special relationship with athletic trainer Scott Leveau, who has made a significant impact on Gadelrab through the years, giving him advice on both sports and life.

“Yusuf is someone I am proud to know,” Leveau said. “He is an ideal athlete due to his competitiveness without being selfish and his humility to seek rehabilitation when he is injured instead of hiding his injuries and putting himself or the team at risk. Every time he interacts with me, he has a good attitude that is contagious.”


Drama Department

Drama department (Photo by Claire Guo).

The drama department was honored for their recent musical, “Ranked,” and their upcoming spring show, “The Laramie Project,” for their courage to undertake contemporary themes such as academic pressure as well as violence and homophobia.

The drama team decided to take on “Ranked” when they saw that Cupertino High School had tackled the project at the Lenaea High School Theatre Festival. 

“We thought it would be interesting if we did ‘Ranked’ at Lynbrook because it talks about severe pressure at school and how that can affect you,” sophomore and drama club member Charlie Dai said. “It was kind of like we were just doing a play about Lynbrook. So, when we were choosing a musical this year, we brought it up and Mr. Wenner went ahead and got the license for it.”

This decision turned out to be a massive success as this was integral in them receiving the award. Meanwhile, “The Laramie Project” was chosen because the drama team wanted to take on a new project with a different tone. 

“We wanted to introduce our own interpretation and try out a different sort of play from what we had done in the past, because we had done a lot of dramatic comedies,” Ohana Miura, senior and a member of the drama club said. “This year, we wanted to do something with more modern topics. ‘The Laramie Project’ has a different type of storytelling as well, and it incorporates realistic acting, which is something different from our usual theatrical acting.”

At the board meeting on Feb. 27, a delegation of drama students received a certificate for their hard work. 

“I was surprised that we were honored, but it was a really nice experience because our efforts are appreciated on campus,” Dai said.


Certified Employee of the Year Anna Kirsh

Anna Kirsh (Photo by Claire Guo).

ASB, Aletheia and Red Cross Club adviser and World Literature teacher Kirsh was selected as the Certificated Employee of the year, an award chosen through a round of nominations from students, parents and staff. 

“I am so honored,” Kirsh said. “Among the most incredible colleagues whom I’ve worked with, to be nominated Teacher of the Year is mind blowing and very, very flattering.”

This year is Kirsh’s 10th year teaching, marking an important milestone in her career. In her time working at Lynbrook, peers and students agree that she has become an integral part of the Lynbrook community both as a teacher and adviser. 

“Ms. Kirsh has impacted me because she’s improved my literature skills and helped me grow as a person,” sophomore and World Literature student Misha Ganguly said. “She is really kind and helps each student individually.”

However, Kirsh never expected that she would be a teacher when she was younger; she had planned to eventually become a lawyer, and even attended law school.

“After college, I joined a law firm and hated it,” Kirsh said. “It was absolutely horrible, so I quit my job on the spot. My best friend was working at a preschool at the time, and I thought it was a fun way to pass the time. I actually fell in love with teaching when I was teaching preschool.”

From there, Kirsh obtained her K-8 teaching credentials and prepared to teach kindergarten. However, she soon realized that this too wasn’t the right fit for her, so she moved into teaching middle school, where she served as the ASB adviser and an English, history and drama teacher. But she didn’t stop there. 

“Then, at a certain point, I got the itch to move again,” Kirsh said. “I always kind of knew I wanted to end up in high school, so I applied to Lynbrook. When I came here, Mr. Lee announced that he was stepping down as an ASB adviser. It felt like the opportunity fell in my lap and it seemed like a sign. So I applied, and have been doing it since.”

As ASB advisor, Kirsh has made a lasting impact. 

“Not only is she a really good advisor, but at the same time, she’s also a parent figure that is always there to support us if we need anything, regardless of whether or not it’s ASB related,” sophomore and ASB Secretary Amy Tang said. “For example, she has offered to help me with my literature essays, and on top of that, she’s been very supportive and helpful when we’re planning events.”

In the future, Kirsh hopes to continue trying new endeavors. She wants to keep things lively and loves hearing her senior students tell her about the colleges they’ve gotten into and watching their journeys throughout the years. Kirsh also enjoys going on school trips with students such as the Model United Nations and ASB field trips, as well as the Educational Tours summer trips organized by art teacher Charlotte Kruk. 

“I feel like this was my goal,” Kirsh said. “I graduated from this district. I went to Homestead High School, so I always knew I wanted to come back here if I ever became a teacher. And Lynbrook is the Disneyland of high schools; the kids here are so sweet and so smart and work so hard. Why would I ever go anywhere else? I’ve made it.”


Foundation Scholar Adrina Tran

Adrina Tran (Photo by Claire Guo).

Growing up with a single mother, senior Adrina Tran faced a unique set of challenges that she has had to navigate. However, she has also learned a lot from her struggles, and received a full tuition scholarship to Boston University and the title of Foundation Scholar, a special award given to only one student at Lynbrook. 

“I was limited in support since my mom was constantly working,” Tran said. “I kind of had to deal with everything myself and figure out my extracurriculars and opportunities.”

Despite this, Tran participates in a multitude of extracurricular activities. Notably, she started a nursing club in her neighborhood and is a head associate at an internship dealing with the opioid epidemic in the San Bernardino area. In her role as head associate, she leads projects involving undergraduates at UCLA and UC Berkeley. In the future, she hopes to become an anesthesiologist.

“I realized the value in independence and to not be afraid to look for a support group,” Tran said. 

At the board meeting on Feb. 27, Tran was presented with a certificate honoring her new title. 

“I was really surprised and shocked, since I personally don’t think I did anything special,” Tran said. “I was just being me.”


Poster Student Andrew Li

Andrew Li (Photo by Claire Guo).

Senior Andrew Li is known by his teachers and peers as a selfless and kind individual.  He is a part of many clubs, such as Indesign, Breakdance and HPV clubs. Ms. Anna Kirsh, who nominated Li for the title of Poster student, was never his teacher, but was impressed by Li after getting to know him through ASB events where he didn’t hesitate to help out. 

“Almost without hesitation when I was first asked to nominate someone, Andrew came to mind,” Kirsh said. “He’s not even my student, but he’s so selfless and he puts his heart into everything he does.”

Li’s favorite memory from his four years at Lynbrook is participating in Homecoming with his friends. Overall, he thinks that his high school journey was not super difficult, but there were definitely challenges. 

“There were ups and downs, challenges that were hard for me to overcome without others,” Li said. “But I would say that the school environment, friends and teachers help with overcoming those things.”

Li will also represent Lynbrook as a Poster student for the 2024-25 school year. 

“Honestly I was quite surprised,” Li said. “It feels good to get the award but it’s also kind of unreal. I just feel happy helping people, and there wasn’t anything that was out of the ordinary from daily life.”

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Claire Guo
Claire Guo, Staffer
(she/her) Claire Guo is a sophomore and first-year staffer in the Epic. She loves reading, writing, creating, and petting her dog.

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    Monique AndersonApr 5, 2024 at 9:13 am

    Bravo to the drama team! I saw both Ranked and The Laramie Project and they were excellent! While I was a bit surprised at the selections (the last Lynbrook production I saw was Beauty and the Beast), I was also impressed by the choices as well as the actual performances. Again, bravo to the entire drama team!
    And kudos to all the honorees!