UNION, NJ – Over 420 freshman students walked through the doors of Union High School yesterday for the first day of school.
But they were familiar with the school and its routine after they received a high school briefing last week during Freshman Orientation hosted by the school counseling department.
Parents attended an information session led by the Union High School administrative team. High School Principal Corey Lowery provided parents with goals for the upcoming school year and information about daily operations. The four vice-principals were also on hand to help parents with questions and concerns.
Students attended smaller group sessions of different workshops, including one titled ‘Navigating Your Path’, which outlined the role of the school counselor, graduation requirements and updates and how to find support throughout the school year.
Ninth-grade vice-principal Kim Osty led a session titled ‘Getting to Know Union High School’ about transitioning to the high school. Osty reviewed policies, procedures, and the code of conduct.
The Peer Ambassador Organization led an interactive session, ‘Get Involved’, designed to allow freshmen to ask questions and receive advice from the upperclassmen on a variety of topics.
‘Get Connected’ instructed students on the registration process in Naviance, the college and career web based computer program that will be utilized throughout their high school career.
Students were provided with an ‘Activities Sheet’ to be used to record their accomplishments leading up to senior year. Peer Ambassadors gave group tours entitled ‘Know Your Way’ and maps were provided to make navigating the halls on the first day easier.
The day ended with the Union High School PTA distributing some back to school snack bags for all in attendance. Chromebook distribution through the IT Department was scheduled for later in the day.
“The event was a success and this was the highest attendance for a Freshman Orientation since the program’s inception,” said Supervisor of School Counseling Nicole Ahern. “Our goal is to have the ninth graders feel a sense of comfort versus anxiety as the school year starts. By allowing them to explore the high school and interact with peers and other students, it sets the stage for a positive transition to high school.”