Summit High School is home to nearly 300 credit-deficient, second-semester sophomores, juniors, and seniors. Our students, for any number of reasons, failed to find a home at our four comprehensive high schools.
The tight-knit group of 10 teachers and one counselor see their role here as an opportunity, a calling. The hallmark of the program stems from the relationships each teacher builds with students who often have felt disenfranchised.
Summit provides an opportunity for students to work at their own pace and play an integral part in making good on a second chance. Summit’s assistant principal works with the teachers regarding students who are under-performing and/or have proven to have poor attendance. Using this information she confers with students and families, maintaining a healthy school-to-home line of communication.
Summit students have the greatest advocate in their counselor who they meet with ten or more times throughout the school year. This connection has proven valuable on both an academic and social level.
Summit is also home to a virtual independent studies program. This program is a haven for our students who suffer from social anxieties and find it difficult to exist in large spaces with an abundance of people. It also provides an opportunity for students who have timely occupational or religious commitments as the flexible schedule allows them to achieve a dream of earning their high school diploma, assist their family financially, or resolving any conflict that may interfere with their education.
Socially, Summit High School provides opportunities for students to take ownership of their campus via athletics and our Associated Student Body (ASB) programs. Summit has competitive volleyball (girls and boys), soccer (coed), basketball (girls and boys) and softball (girls and boys) teams that compete in an organized league.
A prom is now held for our students as they are a cohesive group of young people wanting to spend time together. The ASB team is responsible for fundraisers, promoting school spirit, and civic engagement opportunities. During the 2017-2018 school year, we raised nearly $400 for the Coachella Valley Rescue Mission, nearly $300 for Pennies for Patients, and donated 417 pounds of clothing to the Desert Aids thrift store, Revivals.
Summit’s final program involves two adult transitional special education classes. These students are severely handicapped adults who are working toward social and occupational independence. They have opportunities to work on job sites with our community partners, mainstream into our Summit regular education classrooms, and interact with other students throughout the day. This interaction provides a wonderful balance for both student populations. There is a wonderful give and take of social growth and empathy.
The combination of well-rounded opportunities coupled with an engaged staff has contributed to wonderful student gains both socially and academically. In the past several years, Summit’s enrollment continues to increase as students weigh their options for the best individualized program for their high school experience.
Attendance continues to improve as students embrace the concept of a Summit High School education and graduation rates increase each year. Some students opt to return to their “home” school for graduation but more and more now call Summit their school and participate in our graduation ceremony.
There have been strong increases in parent involvement, test scores continue to rise, and discipline issues are on the decline. Students travel to local universities and colleges, they participate in a career fair and mock interviews, and they proudly come to recognition events such as the Senior Awards Night with family members proudly accompanying them.
Summit is aptly named as students who attend our school have climbed to the top and see the world from a different perspective as they leave us to take on the world.