5 Ways to Form Community, Not Cliques, in High School

"We Are the Future" mural design created by SET High students

5 Ways to Form Community, Not Cliques, in High School

Do you prefer to fly solo? Are the words “group activity” and “teamwork” cringy? We hear you, but here’s the thing- we discovered at our not-so-typical high school, the School for Entrepreneurship and Technology (SET High), that you can actually develop a stronger identity through school-wide community-building… and like it. “The SET Way” culture forms community, not cliques, at our tuition-free public school for grades 9-12 in San Diego. Here’s how

1 – Finding Your Individuality Within Community

SET High culture encourages students to dig deep and discover their true selves. We believe passion fuels learning. As much as the American Way is to celebrate individualism, every collaboration proves that we are stronger together. Examples of groups benefiting from unique student talents are SET High’s passion projects and Tech-free days, to name a couple. 

2 – SET High Clubs

SET High offers fun clubs. Our inclusive campus culture does not tolerate bullying. Rather, students happily encourage others to gather in Battlebots, D&D, Jiu Jitsu, Codebreakers, Mountain Biking, or Art & Friendship, to name a few. Our clubs are student and teacher-driven so they may change year to year as students and staff find new interests or inspiration. 

3 – Chalk the Talk, or Walk the Chalk…

Chalk Space. Students embrace the opportunity to leave their smartphones in their pockets and collectively make art. When chalk is in hand, students are not streaming on Twitch or obsessed with TikTok. They’re often building a community piece, adding to another student’s drawing or theme that will evolve throughout the day and be erased for a new collaboration the next. 

4 – 100% Student-Created ReSET Events

The senior class of ‘22 left their legacy on our SET High Constitution that, “there be an annual inter-grade skills competition.”  We changed it to a monthly event, in which students plan and produce school-wide competitions, ranging from musical chairs to dodgeball. Results for ReSETS? Evidence revealed on Instagram and Facebook prove phenomenal success for schoolwide participation. 

5 – Class Retreats

Every year the 9th grade class at SET High participates in the traditional overnight retreat at the school. Every single year it results in a major bonding event. Friendships are forged, guards fall, common experiences are revealed, and by morning the class feels like family. 

We’re bringing back collective. There’s something special about in person connection that cultivates the emotional intelligence necessary for today’s students to become tomorrow’s leaders. We’re rewriting the traditional idea of success and leading a new generation of socially responsible trailblazers who will shape the way we work and live. We believe this takes a village, a community. Want to join us? Enroll today while we have a few spots left.

About SET High 

SET High offers each student individual attention from multi-talented, highly qualified  teachers. Students build a healthy camaraderie with classmates inside an intellectually rigorous environment that brings out their talents and personality, helping them develop their individual character and direction in life. With a wide variety of electives, flexible scheduling, dual enrollment college classes and more — our students regularly exceed their academic and personal expectations. Enrolling now!