Throughout the year, we will be using our weekly newsletter to update you on important events, student accomplishments, our learning environment for students and teachers, and reflections on our daily life together at Westlake High School. Some of the reflections will be serious, some for laughs, and some to stimulate conversations with your teenager. The topics I bring you to talk with your child will be current and being discussed on our campus, in our community, or at the national level.
Over the last few years at Westlake High School and in Eanes ISD, we have thoughtfully reflected in multiple forms of feedback on the workload of our students. This has been a continuous conversation for the last decade. In an effort to quantify and bring the conversation to students and parents, our students have been asked to complete a Time Management Form. This form is designed to provide information to each student on the time commitment that classes, extracurricular choices, work, and relaxation time fits into a normal week. Students received information from teachers, directors, coaches, and sponsors to help complete this sheet. This exercise is meant to bring awareness to each student about the time commitment that may be necessary to have a successful semester in our students’ lives which can be extremely busy. If your child has not brought this to your attention, you might want to ask them about this activity that we are undertaking as a campus.
As part of our first week of classes on Wednesday, we required our teachers to discuss some of our operational and behavioral expectations. Our English teachers took time to discuss our Westlake High School Honor Code. This discussion included the idea of academic integrity and the importance of honesty in all areas. Our Social Studies teachers took the time to discuss our Student Code of Conduct which outlines our daily expectations as a campus and district. Our Science teachers held a discussion on the importance of making quality decisions on and off our campus. Our teachers were encouraged to make these discussions and not just an informational exchange. Talking points and reflective questions were provided to our teachers who felt this was the best method to deliver and have conversations in these crucial areas. The feedback I received from our students was that it was a positive and efficient way to take in this information and begin building relationships with their teachers out of their content areas. Our teachers reported positive results from this new process as well.
“This is my last first day of school!” “This is my last first home football game.” “This is my last first day of going off campus for lunch.” The list could go on and on in the life of a Senior at WHS. And these are monumental events for our seniors. The Senior year is one of those magical times where you can easily mark and check off important events. As they keep time with these events, it is an enchanted time as they take the time to celebrate special milestones and events. As the Seniors were leaving for the day on Thursday, you could sense the excitement that they had for the last first Friday of the year. One of the joys of being a member of a high school staff is being able to share these last first days over and over again with the best kids in the state of Texas. To the parents of our Seniors, please enjoy these last first days, for all too soon they will become the first days of the college experience!
Always a great day to be a Chaparral!
Steve Ramsey: WHS Principal Blog
Principal's Weekly Reflections