Dear Sea Hawk Students,
Welcome to the 2014-15 school year! Redondo Union High School celebrated several accomplishments last year (thanks to you), and we are geared up to keep the momentum going as we create new memories, reach for new goals, and persevere through new challenges.
RUHS is on the map, thanks to the numerous state and national awards and recognition we received last year. We are ranked as a top school in both Newsweek and U.S. News & World Report, our journalism and yearbook programs received national awards and recognition, our Academic Decathlon team placed ninth in the state competition, we received the Advanced Placement (AP) Honor Roll award for the fourth year in a row from the College Board for equity, access, and success on our AP exams, we are a recipient of the California Business for Education Excellence (CBEE) award (a prestigious honor), we are the only high school in California to receive Silver status from the Alliance for a Healthier Generation (sponsored by the Clinton Foundation) for serving healthy food options and promoting student and staff wellness, and we continue to excel athletically. The list goes on and on, and it is difficult to express in words how honored and grateful I am to serve as your principal, the principal of the BEST high school in the South bay (and beyond)!
As I enter into my fourth year as principal, I would like to continue our road to excellence by challenging our students to acquire and refine three key characteristics that I believe are essential for success at school, in your future career, and in life: advocacy, the ability to cope, and selflessness. I wrote about these characteristics last year and you can read more about the importance of these traits by clicking the link to my letter from last year.
This year I am challenging you to ask yourself these three questions:
What is your passion? What is your purpose? What are your priorities? These are questions I would like you to ask yourself….over, and over and over again, as you begin and continue your journey through high school and life. For many of you, the answers come easy. For some, you haven’t given much thought to what ignites your inner spark. Now is the time! Students who have a passion and purpose are more engaged in school, connected to school, enjoy their high school experience, make positive friendships easier, and experience a greater level of academic success than those who have yet to find a connection to school.
Freshmen, welcome to the best high school in the South Bay! Why is it the best? The answer is simple: there is something for everyone, including you! This is the time to discover yourself, your interests, your passion and purpose, if you haven’t already. And, do not be afraid to see your interests change during your journey through high school. When graduating seniors are asked, “What is one piece of advice you would give freshmen students?” many respond they wish they would have gotten involved in school much earlier – during their freshmen year. (Many also respond they wish they would have tried harder and gotten better grades their freshmen year – the first year your eternal official transcript is created). So….I highly encourage you to try out for a sport or two, find a club (or two) that interests you, and/or find one of our award winning extracurricular activities or programs, such as drama, band, journalism, mock trials, Aca Dec, etc., that excites you. Not only will you find school more enjoyable, you are more likely to excel academically, due to strong peer connections, a strong relationship with a coach or teacher sponsor, and your intrinsic desire to thrive and succeed.
Sophomores and juniors, welcome back! What is your passion and purpose? What are your priorities? Now is the time to have answers to these questions, explore the answers, and challenge yourself to develop priorities, goals, and take action. Ask yourself how connected you are to school. What could you do to improve? Are you an active participant in class and outside of class? What will you take from your journey through high school? As 10th and 11th graders, it is difficult, at times, to create meaning from individual assignments, classes, and tasks; however, my advice to you is to keep your passion, purpose and priorities in mind, revisit them often, and reach outside of your comfort zone to see your goals come to fruition.
Seniors, your journey through high school is coming to an end, as your journey to college, a career, and life begins. You should know your passion and purpose. If you aren’t already, focus on what excites you, moves you, and brings you joy. Help others, especially our underclassmen, discover their interests and take action while at RUHS to feed their passion. Your experiences are valuable, and whether you are up to the challenge or not, you are responsible for modeling excellence, helping others connect to school, and not giving up on your personal goals, regardless of the obstacles. You are and will always be Sea Hawks -- you represent 109 years of an exceptional legacy. Wear your red & white with pride and make your last year the best year both academically and socially.
Sea Hawks, I am confident that you will find all of the support you need at RUHS to make your journey through high school a success. As I mentioned to our returning students last year, success begins with you. I encourage you to advocate for yourself and others, learn to cope with disappointment by not giving up, and be selfless by remembering we are a team and helping others is helping ourselves.
Let’s make this a year filled with passion, purpose, and positive memories!