Orrick R-XI: Switch to Latin honors to begin in 2018-19


By Joy Tipping/Richmond News Managing Editor

Incoming Superintendent Dr. Scott Archibald, at the May 21 Orrick school board meeting, suggested a drastic change in the honors system for high-achieving graduates in future school years: switching to Latin honors rather than the current system of singling out a valedictorian and salutatorian.

Archibald, current high school principal, takes over July 1 from Superintendent Dr. Aerin O’Dell, whose last day is June 30.

A task force of parents, students and board members had been appointed to look into the honors matter, and presented its findings April 24. The task force, Archibald said, agreed that the Latin system would better benefit and honor more high-achieving students.

“We’re recognizing just two of our kids (now),” Archibald said, “when with this system we would be able to recognize more. … This would be based on individual achievement, rather than competition against their classmates. … It’s an incentive for all the kids to work harder.”

For the 2017-2018 school year, for example, the school had five students with 4.0 or higher grade-point averages at graduation. “Yet we only recognized two students, and the difference between No. 2 and No. 3 were minimal points,” he said.

The complete version of this story appears in the Friday, June 1, 2018, edition of The Richmond News.

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