SOAR at the Door Celebration
One of our favorite traditions at HEHS, a special staff “SOAR at the Door” welcome to the students, took place again this year on Wednesday, August 17th. Students got off the bus and were met by enthusiastic cheers, high-fives, and even a cowbell as our staff did their best to make sure all students know that this is not just a school, but a close-knit community where everyone is welcomed, safe, and valued. The welcome continued down each of the hallways, with staff cheering our students on and wishing them a great day and great year. This warm welcome is one way of introducing our new students, and reminding our returning students, of SOAR, our PBIS (Positive Behavior Intervention System) acronym that describes some of our most important values:
Own your Actions
Realize your Potential
We will continue to implement SOAR throughout the school year with school-wide activities, lessons, and celebrations marking students’ growth and success in demonstrating these important values.
Academic Rigor & Student Learning
You’ve probably heard the word ‘rigor’ mentioned many times in reference to education. We are focused on increasing the rigor of our content, teaching methods, and assessments. We do this by “creating an environment in which each student is expected to learn at high levels, each student is supported so he or she can learn at high levels and each student demonstrates learning at high levels” (Blackburn, 2008). Each week this blog will feature classrooms that are creating environments that allow our students the opportunity to learn at high levels.
This past Thursday night we held our annual Parent Open House night. Over 500 parents took advantage of the opportunity to walk through their student’s schedules, meeting teachers, learning about the classes they’re taking, and better understanding the classroom policies and grading procedures. Many of you also met with a counselor, purchased candy grams, taffy apples, or spirit apparel, and joined our parent organization, HELP. I want to thank each of you who took time out of your busy schedules to invest in your students by attending Open House. A special thank you to everyone who joined HELP, as your membership provides funds that enable the organization to support our clubs and activities and also provide scholarships for students. I also want to highlight a group of amazing people who work behind the scenes on Parent Open House night and every other day and night to ensure that our building is clean and functional. Our custodial and maintenance staff did double duty on Thursday, coming in early to thoroughly clean and prepare the building for Parent Open House night, and then doing it again after everyone left so that everything would be ready for the students in the morning. They are an amazing group of individuals who care deeply for our school and our students. I’m honored to know each of them and work with them on a daily basis.