By Matt Messick, Assistant Principal, BGHS
My Grandpa Kunkel was a hard working, overall-wearing farmer—hogs and row crop in Northwest Missouri. Today those overalls always remind me that hard work pays, and now I am beginning to realize that the payment doesn’t always show up in a bank account. In fact, Thomas Edison summed up the significance of overalls this way: “Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls.” Here at Bowling Green High School, I believe that our students have excellent opportunities to turn hard work into a successful harvest, and we don’t want our students to miss any of those opportunities.
Here at Bowling Green High School, we help our students monitor their Grade Point Averages (GPAs) so that they can witness tangible evidence that hard work pays. We identify academic achievement through our National Honor Society and the local Alpha Beta Gamma. At commencement, we recognize the top 10 percent of the graduating class, and throughout the school year, we spotlight Student of the Quarter and Senior of the Month. Our Renaissance and A+ programs are ongoing opportunities that give our students special recognition.
GPA’s, however, are not the only measuring stick for Bobcat success. Our Student in Good Standing initiative presents both short term and long term opportunities. SIGS, designed by faculty and administration, board approved and implemented in 2012, places scaffolding for a successful high school career. We feel it is essential for students to meet minimum expectations in their academic performance, attendance and behavior in order to represent Bowling Green High School well. A Student in Good Standing designation is not an easy achievement. Rather, it takes hard work and consistent right choices, but the ensuing harvest is certainly worth the hard work.
Furthermore, our students are given an opportunity to “keep pace” as the semester progresses. Having this opportunity allows for short-term goal achievement, thus opening doors for long-term success. So, finally, when our high school students achieve that important short-term goal—the ramp for graduation—they can reflect back to the hard work –their “overall-wearing” days—that made that final walk possible.
Finally, our Bobcat extra-curricular offerings present opportunities to seek out success outside of the classroom. We have 18 athletic teams and over a dozen clubs and organizations just waiting to offer outstanding student opportunity wherein hard work pays. These clubs and organizations also present excellent opportunities for our students to develop and practice leadership skills. Being an effective leader is hard work, but certainly when our students apply for university admission, scholarships, and employment, their hard work as a participant in Bobcat extra-curricular activities will pay dividends.
Parents and families who consistently support their favorite Bobcat can watch with pride as he or she seeks out available opportunities at Bowling Green High School. Then, when “Pomp and Circumstance” signals the graduation procession, successful Bobcats will trade their overalls for a cap and gown—at least until the next step in their life journey—a journey that will find special success for those who value hard work.