REVIEW OF Rosthern Junior College High School BY Alum, Patrick Laughlin
- Date of Review
October 02, 2018
Gr. 11 - Gr. 12
- University (major)
(5) Overall Experience
RJC gave me opportunities that no other school can offer. Not only did we learn in class, we learned life skills in the dorms, made connections with people from over the world. Upon graduation, I became part of a bigger community of alumni that shares the same experiences, fantastic memories, and gives us a foot in the door for opportunities later in life. Alumni are very supportive of freshly graduated students. I have seen alumni give graduates advance notice of places to rent in Saskatoon for school, post ads in the school about possible job opportunities, and many more tips and tricks to prepare graduates for after school life. RJC was the best thing I ever did. To me it is so much more than a school.
(5) School Leadership
As a student, we respected the staff very much. They were more than teachers and principals. They were true leaders. They pushed students to do their best while being fair to everyone. Discipline was fair and students always had an opportunity to explain their perspective when issues arose. Communication with parents, from my understanding, was very good. Be it emails, phone calls, newsletters. If parents had any questions, I believe they were more than welcome to ask and get the info the wanted.
I was more than happy with the teaching i recieved. The student staff relationship is very different in that we are all on a first name basis. Teachers do their best to make ideas and concepts applicable when they can. What is especially valuable is the time at the end of the school day that is set aside for students to go to different classrooms and get a few extra minutes of help or finish up those last few questions that would otherwise become homework. Having a time in the evening set aside for homework is great as well. When students are involved in all types of extra curricular activities, and normal teenage life, sometime they forget to take time to do the things they need to do. Monday to Thursday night, one hour was set aside for studies. Sports and rehearsals were scheduled with this in mind. I know it really helped me.
RJC definitely pushes students to do their best. The atmosphere was relatively relaxed which made students more comfortable and willing to ask those questions that can challenge ideas. The students can be competitive academically. But I found the students are far more willing to assist their classmates with their work. I found the student body to be just as supportive as the staff which made for an incredible learning experience. What I enjoyed most was how we would go outside of the school campus to learn about certain events. Especially in native studies and history 30 class. We could go visit the site of the Riel revolution (batoche, gabriel dumont bridge, duck lake),go to waneskewin and learn about native culture, and really immerse ourselves in what we were learning.
RJC had many extra curricular opportunities from choir and theatre, to hockey and football. Having facilities such as a rink, soccer and football fields, and a tennis court allowed students to go and enjoy being outdoors. Even those who did not play sports, sing, or act were able to participate. We would cheer on our teams, attend choir performances, watch plays, and support or friends. There was always opportunities for students to showcase their talents with coffeehouses, school wide game days and the ever popular pickup game of shinny in the rink.
The student body becomes much more than people you go to school with. As a student, the other students become like family. It really didn't matter where you came from. Whether it be Canada, Hong Kong, Mexico, Columbia, it Switzerland. The first day, everyone starts with a blank slate and we get the opportunity to know people for who they are. Because of everyone essentially starting with a blank slate, there doesn't tend to be a lot of tension between students. For prospective students, my advice would be, stay open. These are people you will remember for the rest of your life and will share many incredible experiences with.
(5) School Life
I absolutely loved the day to day life. The days were structured enough that there wasn't chaos but left enough free time to enjoy yourself. RJC tried to make the students lives enjoyable with events like guys/girls nights out, Christmas supper, occasionally taking a bunch of students into saskatoon for a few hours on a Friday evening, and giving us the freedom to be normal, fun loving dumb teenagers. I don't know if RJC could do much to improve the quality of life for students. It is just a wonderful place to be. As for advice to perspective students, if you go in open to a bit of change and open to trying new things, you will have a blast.
The RJC community is like none other. Meeting people at events and discovering they are alumni as well is incredible. It's like, though you graduated 10 years apart, you went to school together. Alumni frequently attend events such as the alumni sports weekend, musicals, concerts, and it becomes much like a family reunion. The RJC community is very tight knit and welcoming. Parents are welcome to be involved in the life of the school and we as students get to know the parents quite well. Most of them are alumni as well which makes parental involvement very common in the workings of the school I still keep in touch with people I went to the with. We all become so close it is hard not to.
(5) School Location
Rosthern is a wonderful place. It is easy to get into saskatoon or Prince Albert, it is a small quiet town where everything is in walking distance making it great for students to go to the grocery store for stocking their snack stash, watching some of the boys in the local midget hockey team play, go run around in the park, or even just go for a walk in a safe, environment.
As a student, i did not have a whole lot to do with the application process. But i can imagine the admissions staff make things as easy and streamlined as possible. I do remember filling out forms with questions like " are you a tidy or messy person?" " what type of music do you enjoy?" These I assume were used to make pairing up students to be room mates in the dorms much easier and I never had any issues with either of my room mates. It just goes to show RJC really does try to make the transition into RJC life as easy as possible. I remember being encouraged to ask questions when I met with the admissions officer and that made me feel much better as a young man taking a big step into a new way of life.
(4.5) University placement and counselling
I feel we were well equipped for post secondary education. Between doing tours of the university of Saskatchewan, having alumni of last year come back for events and talk about their lives, and being in the dorms, we were prepared to make that next step. We had representatives from schools come talk to us as a student body, telling us what they could offer us, and how to go about applying to different schools. This certainly aided in making informed choices while cutting down on researching schools alongside doing our classwork and trying maintain a social life. I believe RJC has developed a reputation that post secondary schools admire. The teachings of community, leadership, and of course academics do not go unnoticed when applying to the school of your choice