The hallways of Kewaskum High School were hushed, with only the odd staff member quietly shuffling down its corridors, while the school’s field house rang with the sound of more than 130 student voices.
“V-I-C-T-O-R-Y, that’s our freshman battle cry!” groups of ninth-graders chanted from the bleachers.
With almost a week to go before the start of the school year, nearly three-quarters of Kewaskum High’s freshman class has chosen to spend the next few days learning about its new school. Freshmen will look for their lockers, track down classroom teachers and meet or reacquaint themselves with their classmates.
And, hopefully, they will get a head start on what educators consider the most important year of high school.
“If you talk to any high school principal, what they’re going to tell you is that when a kid is most likely to fail is in that freshman year,” Kewaskum High School Principal Christine Horbas said. “So to get them off on the right foot, I think, is very, very important.”
Many schools hold orientation nights or freshman-only times on the first day of school. Kewaskum tried some of those ideas, too, before launching a full warm-up week this year.
The extra time means Kewaskum can hold more fun activities for the ninth-graders – such as teaching them school cheers or playing four-way tug-of-war – as well as refresh skills such as writing exam answers and making measurements.
Meanwhile, TJ Mertz wonders what is happening with the Madison School District’s “Ready, Set, Go” conferences.