Reeltown High School will hold an open house for each grade on Aug. 1-7.
Aug. 1 is designated for seniors, Aug. 5 for seventh graders, Aug. 6 for sophomores and juniors, and Aug. 7 for eighth graders and freshmen.
Parents and students will be taken through a quick review of their schedules then have a multitude of stations to progress through.
“For instance, one station will be for those who need to buy parking permits, another will be for locker rental, while a third will be for updating the demographic information we have on each student in INow, our student information system,” said Kim Counts, RHS Counselor. “There will be others such as Student Handbook and County Codes of Conduct distribution, lunch applications, and other things we have to do at the beginning of each year.”
By taking part in the scheduled open house, parents and students will have a clearer understanding of transition processes during the day.
“Each student will begin at a station that addresses a particular area of need,” RHS summer administrator Page Cotten said. “When a student finishes his or her business, say at the locker rental station, they will move on to the handbook or parking permit slot or whatever happens to be next. That way, the parent and the student will both be aware of the enormity of material the students receive at the first of the year.”
Cotton said students who attend the open house will not have as many papers to bring home to be signed by a parent on the first day of school. Those steps will remove the need for the additional and extended time students spend in homeroom and will save approximately 400 hours of instructional time.
Reeltown High principal Dr. Tom Cochran said the key to student success at a smaller school is treating each student as an individual with unique qualities.
“At a 2A school like ours, to make it the best experience we can for our students, it is essential that we take the approach of trying our best to meet the individual needs of each student,” Cochran said. “While we can't be all things to all people, we can be the best possible for our students.”
Cochran said it is critically important that parents and students make sure they update their demographic information because that details who may contact students. Also, he said, parents should be sure to complete the free and reduced lunch application.
“So much of our funding is determined by the Free and Reduced numbers that represent our students,” said Dr. Cochran. “Parents and students often think that since they’re not going to eat they don’t need to complete the form, but it can only help us if they will.”
In addition to office staff, those who teach the students in the grades each night will also be in attendance to advise on the materials requirements for their classes. The overall goal of the orientation evenings will be to benefit students, said Cochran.
“If all goes as well as we hope, and as well as it should, this will be a significant benefit to our students, and our parents because they can sign and complete all of the paperwork they are normally faced with at the beginning of each year. We’re looking forward to it.”