May 29, 2015
I just graduated. I had really hoped to get into RV as an eighth-grader because my community high school is one of the worst in Colorado.
What was good socially: Despite assumptions, RV is a very inclusive school. While there are few minority students, you are treated as if you matter; whether you dress like a dork, dress like the opposite gender, don't have enough money to dress like anything intentionally, are very fat, an atheist or Mormon, a racial minority, or from a different country. I felt that fewer people were excluded here than in my old district (a more racially diverse one) where how swaggy your clothes and hair are were of utmost importance. The school also places emphasis on community support. There were always large-scale volunteer and charity efforts. I especially appreciate being treated as an adult by teachers, administrators, and school policy/culture. There aren't stifling and inane rules on how to dress, speak, how to organize your own supplies, where to go when,etc.
What was good academically: You're surrounded by well-rounded and intelligent peers who make class discussions and group work worthwhile. Most teachers are passionate, organized, good-humored, and on the reasonable spectrum of strict and lenient. I learned so much in every subject. I always felt like I was surrounded by astounding young men and women, so I had big fish in a bigger pond syndrome-while exceptional in my old district, I was average at RV. But even though I suspect I could have received more scholarships had I went elsewhere, I would not have been as prepared for college.
What was bad/tips to succeed: Many elective classes are a complete waste of time. don't fill your schedule with more electives than necessary, because you'll learn very little about the subject matter and the time is better spent studying for core-subject classes. Don't be lazy. Improve, don't decline each semester. Use every Access period and free period to do homework, study, and get help. Try to take as many honors and AP classes as possible, because some less accountable teachers teach regular courses; and on the English/Humanities side those classes are a joke. GET INVOLVED. Join a sport, musical, whatever. Any outcastiness I felt was my own fault for not being involved. Also, if your kid likes sports, send him here, his head will explode.
- submitted by a student