Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Reaching Higher with Seniors

I am officially done meeting with all of my seniors for their 1st semester ISP meetings. Some of them have actually met with me 3 or more times! I'm feeling really good about their progress towards post-secondary planning & inspired by the results of the last couple of years of work with them.

This year I asked all of them to share their post-secondary aspirations on a #ReachHigher slip, which we hung on a small bulletin board just inside the Student Services Office entrance.

Every senior completed one & I have to say I was so touched by some of them. These kids really make my heart sing. 

To compliment the aspiration slips for the #ReachHigher bulletin board, my assistant made these awesome postcards today that I can hang on student's lockers as the college acceptances come in, or mail to their house. We copy them onto bright paper (they took our color printer away to save money). Note: We are working on a better file to post here for sharing purposes, our PrintShop PDF conversion wasn't working today--we will update with a better file soon.

For the last couple of years I have been trying to hand write more personal notes to my students. Specifically, every time a senior is accepted to a college I hang a postcard on their locker with a handwritten note to congratulate them (I am so excited about this new design). The hallway is already becoming filled with lockers with congratulatory notes and people are starting to talk. 
This year for the first time ever, the Superintendent stopped by my office to tell me that he really liked that I did this and talked to me about the endeavor a little. I also have students coming in so excited to tell me about where they have been accepted and reminding me that they need a locker sign. <---Love this!

This small (personal) token has made such a huge impact on my students, school and community... and done so much to advocate for my program.

We also plan to start taking group photos of students that have been accepted to college in front of the bulletin board to publish on the web and send to the local newspaper. 

I hope that these ideas are helpful to you as you work to support the Reach Higher Initiative and your students.

How do you celebrate college acceptances with your students?

Read more about the Reach Higher Initiative here

Check out these past blog posts regarding the Reach Higher Initiative: