Ridgeview Ravens: Four months in
Principal, teachers, students talk about first year
The halls of Ridgeview were empty just a few months ago.
Now, the Ravens have taken flight -- so to speak.
"We really feel like we are firing on all four cylinders," Principal Lee Loving said Thursday.
From dental labs to state-of-the-art theaters, the unique curriculum is grabbing the students' attention.
For sophomore Kyle Thomas, his fifth-period robotics class is what drives him to learn.
"As far as I know, it's the first school in this district to have something like this, so I'm the first class to try it. It's the reason I went to this school over the other one," Thomas said.
In fact, one word I kept hearing, believe it or not: "fun"
"It's very cool, having different choices for electives than other schools do. Just the new opportunities to do the stuff like that is fun," said Freshman Ashlee Bloking.
And the teachers agree.
"It's really amazing to watch this unfold, and it makes it easy for me, because I get to enjoy them as they're making these discoveries," said engineering teacher Cory O'Neill.
One teacher you might even recognize. NewsChannel 21's former sports director Keith Bleyer left the news desk for the classroom.
"I've been working 12-14 hour days because I want to do it right. Because I want these kids to get their hands on the equipment, instead of me standing up there going, 'I did this and I did that,'" Bleyer said, then imitating a student falling asleep and snoring.
Not only did Bleyer win "October Teacher of the Month," he's had to add chairs and desks for his TV production and photography classes.
Still, the principal and teachers agree, not all of the kinks have been worked out yet.
Loving says attendance numbers have been pretty solid, but he's looking forward to gaining 200-300 more students next year and filling the hallways even more.
"There's something really special going on here at Ridegview, and it's not because of the beautiful building," Loving said "It's because of the students and parents and people in this community.There's an enthusiasm, a thirst for this idea of, what else can we do?"
"It's like that duck on the water. Calm on the surface, feet are going crazy underneath," Bleyer said. "That's what it's been like here, but the kids have so much pride in this school."
As you might imagine, Loving said Ridgeview and Redmond High students have developed a friendly, healthy rivalry he hopes to see continue in the years to come.
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