Tuesday, March 15, 2011

This is Our Time...

It has been a great year at OHS. I love the opportunity to work with some of the absolute best teachers, support staff, and students in the world. That being said, everything can't be perfect. We have had our share of struggles this year. Many of those have come on the athletic field.

It is no secret that our numbers have been down. The decrease in participation in interscholastic sports is a trend that has not just affected our school. Across our conference and even throughout the state, participation numbers have been stagnant or shrinking in a number of sports. We have played with dignity, determination, and honor in all of our endeavors. Unfortunately that effort has not turned into a significant number of victories. As great as our school is, and as proud as we are of it, it is tough absorbing losses. We want to achieve excellence in all areas and, even though we know that goal is lofty, it is still hard to swallow when we go through tough seasons with fewer wins than we would like. I applaud our kids and coaches for keeping their heads up and forging on through the tough times.

All year it seems we have been waiting for "our time" - the time when our kids can shine for the stars we know them to be. As I reflected on the last few weeks in student activities, I realized, we have hit "our time."

This is our time......
  • The OHS Jazz Band, the reigning state champions for class 2A, received a wild card bid to the Iowa Jazz Championships. This means they will have the opportunity to defend their title in Des Moines on April 12th.
This is our time......
  • The OHS Art Department recently took part in the all Dickinson County Schools Art Show. Our students won several honorable mention and judges choice awards and Senior Taylor Pirie won Best in Show for her sculpture.
This is our time.....
  • In January the O-SL Debate Team captured a record 5th straight state championship and senior Maggie Rohlk became a two time state champion
This is our time.....
  • Okoboji Individual Speech sent 32 events to state this past weekend. Of those 32, 26 came home with I ratings (the highest rating you can get). Of those, 19 earned straight I's (which means all three judges rated them a I.) 5 of those students (Caitlin Rolfes, Risty Stamoulis, Jen VanOort, Jack Ave, and Jordan Hanson) have earned trips to perform at the All State Festival.
And the list goes on and on...I haven't even mentioned our DECA students and the great job they did at districts and state or that two of them have qualified for nationals!

I also haven't mentioned our large group speech and the great performances they gave at district and state competition or our choir and the amazing concerts they have performed, or the fact that nineteen new members were inducted into the Okoboji Chapter of the National Honor Society just last night.

I know we haven't had the year we would like in some of our extracurriculars. At times we haven't seen the success we want to on the field or the court. We all want to see Okoboji be victorious in all of our endeavors, and we will. I know we will.

In the meantime lets celebrate the amazing things our students are doing and the incredible awards they have received. As our freshman hear on their first day each year - they truly are an important part of an extraordinary school.