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Student Lead Tours

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This year, incoming Joel Barlow freshman experienced a new form of orientation instead of the traditional orientation to accommodate a lower school budget.

The new class of freshman were the test subjects to a revamped version of freshman orientation titled, “Student Lead Tours”, rather than the original orientation and it has been cited as a huge success. The new “Student Lead Tours” were basically, older JBHS students would lead a group of freshman through their schedules, answering questions along the way.

Many were worried about how successful this new system would be, but it was apparently a success. Mrs. Julie McTague lead the project. “The positive things that we were hearing was that it was more personalized and more intimate,” she said. She lays out the goals for the tours, and it seems it was effective.

Freshmen were very pleased on how well the new orientation went. Freshman Ethan Horbury participated in the new orientation. “Yes, yes especially because I knew the people who were giving the tour,” he said. This shows exactly what Mrs. McTague, the vice principal of Joel Barlow High School, described the new orientation, as a more personalized, more intimate way of showing people their schedules. For this freshman and many like him it seems that these tours were a massive success.

Victoria Biafore was one of the brand new leaders of the tour. “It was really good for the people who did come, but the old orientation was better,” she said. She specifically cited the reasons for the previous incarnation being better, saying the lack of teachers in the experience negatively affected the presentation. This however did not seem to bother many students, who showed no complaints on the matter.

McTague also said that there was overwhelming positive support for the tours shown in parent meetings, despite the limited scope still shows a significant amount of happiness with the ingenuity that came of a budget cut.

These tours are not mandatory unlike the orientation, but fortunately, it seems that had a negligible effect. According to McTague the attendance was close to perfect, standing around 160 participants.

And almost everyone agreed the presentation met the goals that were set. A dozen students and a few staff members managed to reach many students and even parents.

The tours were so effective, some parents were wanting to travel with the students. This led to a very impressive idea to take them on tours in groups of their own. This showed even the parents the school, which brought them together, and some of them started to exchange business.

Students, parents, and faculty alike agree that these tours were a success. It seems like the old orientation is a thing of the past, for these tours will most likely be the groundwork for future years to create an individualized approach to introducing incoming freshman to Joel Barlow.

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Student Lead Tours