Sixth grade added to ROJH next year

New students’ core classes, lunches will be held on west campus

Nia Carter and Mahala Higginbotham, News Reporters

Get ready for 6th graders at Red Oak Junior High.

Red Oak ISD’s Board of Trustees recently approved the Growth Management Committee’s  recommendation to make fewer transitions from school-to-school. The recommendation, known as “Phase One,” will change ROJH’s west campus into a home for 6th graders beginning next year. Fifth graders will be reincorporated back into the elementary campuses, which will lead to Red Oak Intermediate being turned into an additional elementary campus.

“The board came up with this new transition because it made academic sense and allows room for growth,” Superintendent Scott Niven said.

The junior high’s west campus, which will undergo renovations immediately, will just be for 6th graders. Sixth graders will be allowed to participate in pre-athletics and some electives that will likely give them opportunities to interact with 7th and 8th graders. It has not yet been decided which electives will be open to 6th graders, but all decisions will be made prior to the beginning of the new school year.

Although 6th graders will have contact with the rest of the junior high through pre-athletics and electives, the west campus will house their own core classes and lunches.

Many students said they will accept the 6th graders as long as they aren’t too intrusive into the 7th and 8th graders’ social circles.

“I would be OK with it [sixth graders] as long as they gave me space,” 7th grader Camille Condron said.

Those involved in incorporating the 6th graders into the school believe it won’t take very long for students and teachers to get used to the idea of 6th graders at the west campus, mostly because students at the main campus will not see their younger classmates very often.

“I think this [phase] allows a smoother transition for 6th graders to become comfortable with the ROJH campus,” Assistant Principal Maricela Torres said. “I don’t think there will be much of an adjustment needed because it hasn’t been clarified if we will even be on the same schedule, which makes it possible the 6th graders might not even cross paths with the 7th and 8th graders.”

Spanish teacher Kendalyn Smith the major adjustment will be for the 6th graders.

“I think it will be a pretty easy adjustment for students and teachers,” Smith said. “It will be a big change for kids in elementary school, or coming into 6th grade, but the current 7th graders and teachers will be OK.”

For more information about the reconfiguration process, including the determination of new elementary bounding zones for next year, call the Red Oak communications office at 972-617-2941.