Editor’s note: We asked Front Royal day student Jonathan Pederson ’15 the following question: "What things do you think day students should know if they are considering an education at Randolph-Macon Academy?" In response, he wrote the following blog.
1. You get to go home.
As simple as it is, the majority of kids in R-MA are dorm students. This means they may be homesick. They see the opportunity to go home as a luxury you get to have daily. (They will sometimes beg you to take them home with you or take them out to lunch!)
2. You are responsible.
Along with going home, you get to decide when to do homework. Unless you have a nagging parent, you must keep self-control to complete your assignments.
3. You will have a different time schedule.
Whereas going home is good, it is different from public schools. Participating in an extracurricular intramural will end about 5:00 p.m. If you participate in a varsity sport, you will be let out approximately 6:00 p.m.
4. A school is but its teachers.
It is easy to show off a new building or an efficient academic schedule. The most difficult thing to display is actually the most important thing. In an educational facility, the most important thing is the educators themselves. R-MA has the greatest educators I personally have found. This is the largest contribution to my decision of going to this school. The teachers value intellect and curiosity. They are qualified to explain difficult problems, but they still are humble enough to admit it if they don’t know an answer. They will then find out the answer and give you the correct answer. Educators here take the time to develop personal relationships with the cadets by becoming mentors and advisors. Educators often times remark that they themselves are challenged as they challenge their students.
5. Class sizes are small.
Further contributing to a school is the classroom environment. R-MA has small class sizes, which enable teachers teach a group of students without distractions. R-MA’s small class sizes allow teachers to personally relate to each of their students, without distracting from the curriculum.
6. Doors are always open.
R-MA has a full-time staff working both day and nights. Asking for assistance is always acceptable and encouraged.
7. Success is highly valued.
R-MA’s teachers, coaches, administrators, and other staff members focus their time on each student’s success. Success is awarded. However, failure is not criticized. R-MA uses failures to develop success.