Sequoyah High School has officially begun its second year, and with that, many changes have emerged.
One change that the school is currently adjusting to is its student body size, which is now at 95 students, nearly doubled from last year. There are now 34 ninth-graders, with 10 that came from Sequoyah’s K–8 campus and 24 ninth-graders from 16 other schools. There are 44 tenth-graders, seven of them being transfers from four other schools. There are also 18 eleventh-graders, with four being transfers from four other schools.
Last year, students said the grade levels were practically indistinguishable, contributing to Sequoyah’s sense of inclusion. “There’s a weaker link between juniors and the lower grades. Last year I knew most of the ninth graders within a month or less, and this year there are a lot of faces I still don’t recognize. Now I only have classes with juniors, besides Z block,” said junior Meg Mordecai.
Although this transition period may be difficult for some, other students are enjoying the adjustment. Sophomore Nailah Shorter said, “I was happy to see that I would be able to make relationships with more people, and live the Sequoyah experience with more people.”
New students were also excited to begin attending a progressive school like Sequoyah. “I made the decision to come to Sequoyah because it’s a really progressive school, and above all it’s flexible. It wasn’t just this big school where you wouldn’t get any help with assignments or your emotional well being,” said freshman Malia Flores. When asked why she decided to come to Sequoyah, Geo Wood responded similarly with: “I really like Sequoyah’s approach to learning, like they know mistakes are valuable and it’s not about just getting a good grade. I really like the progressive education, and the people there are really accepting.”
But one obstacle the new students did not anticipate was the amount of homework that would be assigned. “I didn’t expect it to be as big of a load as it is. But I think the homework is not like other schools’ homework because the teachers here want to push your thinking instead of just giving you busy work,” said Flores. Freshman Adela Villaba said, “I think my transition was good, but the only thing I wasn’t used to was the massive amount of homework.” Returning student Natalie Tobar agrees, saying “I feel like there should be better communication between teachers so we don’t get too much homework. Julian’s method of using the spreadsheet is pretty good because you know when you have homework and you can ask other teachers if they’re able to accommodate.”