20 May Rocking the ROK
The magic of high school graduation brings about many sentiments and emotions. We take this last month of the school year to wrap up academic journeys for the seniors at School for Entrepreneurship and Technology (SET High) with a reflection project. We call this final requirement ROK, Reflection of Knowledge, and we all (administration, staff, teachers, and seniors) take it seriously, in mind and heart.
The Bold and the Brilliant
SET High is a tuition-free public California Distinguished high school in San Diego.
We believe the power of mindful reflection is strong, which we find apparent every year. We’re proud of our graduating seniors at SET High. This time of the school year reveals, yet again, that our strategically small classes and intentional flexibility, truly makes a difference. These ROK presentations serve as a reminder of all the ways we engage our students; to enjoy learning, explore new ideas, and to be academically successful.
As Principal Dr. Neil McCurdy tells the seniors, “I know that it may seem stressful to present in front of a large group of students, but each year I always wish that everyone could see all of the senior presentations because they are all so heartfelt with really good messages. It is a shame that all of the work that goes into them only gets seen by a few faculty members.”
“Do not be afraid to make it your own,” Neil tells the students. “If you’re a crazy good guitarist, bring your guitar and play us something to demonstrate your passion. You will have a much easier time with your ROK if you are authentic.”
Looking Back to Move Forward
We ask the seniors to look back on their SET High career and create a 7-minute presentation that tells their story about what they learned through SETUP:
- Social Responsibility
- Effective Leadership
- Tenacity and Grit
- Uncertainty as Opportunity
- Passion, Purpose, Performance
Our seniors work with an advisor on this project. Each student is also responsible for scheduling the presentation within the time slots made available, and finding a panel of judges. The panel needs to include an administrator, staff member, and one other adult (18-year-old high school students do not count as this other adult).
Seniors understand that this is a crucial requirement for graduation, and failing to appropriately adhere to the well-spelled-out rules could mean losing their “senior privileges,” such as prom night, Grad Night, or graduation itself. Our seniors are also made very aware of the judging criteria used by the panelists to grade their presentation, content, and how well they demonstrate Academic Experience & Growth, SETUP (mentioned above), Meaningful Experience, and Future Planning.
Year after year, the results show that these young humans are indeed ready to venture out into the “real world” and create some positive, responsible change. Can you imagine how that feels as a teacher, staff member, administrator, or parent?
Dr. McCurdy tells the seniors, “Really, this is all about bragging about yourself and convincing us that you embody the SETUP ideals. With a presentation like this, the best way to view it is as an acceptance speech. You’ve already done all of the hard work by making it through the most difficult of the teenage years and coming this close to graduation. Now you get to reflect on it and talk about what you learned. Easy!”
As a tuition-free, safe, flexible public charter school, the School for Entrepreneurship & Technology is a great place to challenge the mind while exercising passion. If you have an eighth grade student who could use a warm welcome into high school, try one of our Shadow Days. We keep enrollment open year-round. Call us anytime! 858.874.4338 Or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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 individual talents and personality, helping develop character and direction in life. With a wide variety of electives, flexible scheduling, dual enrollment college classes and more — our students regularly exceed academic and personal expectations. Enrolling now