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“Ravenscroft 101” Gives New Students a Crash Course in All Things Upper School

Fewer things in life are more intimidating than starting high school — except, perhaps, starting high school as a brand-new student in the community. This summer, the Upper School offered a way to ease that experience for rising ninth-grade students who are also new to Ravenscroft. A week-long class, “Ravenscroft 101,” helped new students understand the fundamentals of what to expect as incoming freshmen. 

Students took sample classes in math, English and history to give them a sense of the workload, topics  and expectations of the class. They also had the opportunity to take a session dedicated to study habits and test preparation. The class also helped them learn their way around Murphy Hall and other buildings on campus, giving them one less thing to worry about during the first weeks of school. 

We asked a student, a parent and a teacher involved in the inaugural Ravenscroft 101 to share their feedback on the program. All agreed it is having a positive impact on the newest members of the Upper School community.

I know that a lot of new students worry about the workload at new schools — that was my biggest concern — so this program clarified that apprehension for me. I realized in my first few weeks in school that everyone seemed to know one another and was very familiar with the school ... But I also noticed that because of Ravenscroft 101 I am at least close to being as acquainted with the school as they are, making me feel like less of the confused freshman I’d thought I’d be.

Despite the activity of starting school, long hallways, intimidating amounts of homework, so many buildings, teachers’ expectations, teachers in general, and Raven spirit, I feel both welcome and confident going into my ninth-grade year because of Ravenscroft 101. 

— Christina Graham ’23

As parents, we were incredibly grateful for the opportunity of early integration, prior to a baptism-by-fire first day of school. As a former educator, I was astounded by the dedication of the folks who planned and executed this week-long course. They took time to do this during their well-deserved and needed summer break. We are so impressed that it was offered, and it's a true testament to the caliber of excellence that is exclusive to Ravenscroft.  

— Julie Wall, parent of Ava Kate Wall ’23

Now that I’m teaching several of the students I had in Ravenscroft 101, I can see that they are more self-assured than some of the other new students ... The class already feels familiar, so they know that they’re going to be OK overall, and this sense of confidence and comfort goes a long way early on [in the school year].

— Alison Kelly, ninth-grade Honors English teacher