Seniors reflect on high school

By the time most students graduate from high school, they’ve racked up a stack of statistics: Grade point average, class rank, and SAT scores.

But those numbers don’t always paint a complete picture of a student, said Alanna O’Brien, vice principal of curriculum and professional development at La Salle Catholic College Preparatory

“While numbers are good,” she said, “I don’t think they tell the whole story of students and who they are.”

That’s why, starting this year, La Salle Prep has added a new graduation requirement: Each senior must create and present an online portfolio that highlights not just academic achievements, but also successes in service, sports, employment, and extracurricular activities.

This week, each senior came to campus to give a 15-minute presentation about his or her portfolio to a handful of adults and seniors. The students walked their audiences through their portfolios, then fielded questions, such as "Which banner means the most to you?"

“This is their chance to show off what they’re good at,” said O’Brien.

Members of the Class of 2019 started building their portfolios this year after meeting with O’Brien, who challenged them to reflect on their high school careers.

She then gave them access to an online template that allowed them to organize their four years like a website. The result: Each student’s landing page looks like a website selling a single product: The student.

Tabs across the top of the home page go to interior pages focused on each student’s "features," such as ACADEMICS or EXTRACURRICULARS or SERVICE.

Students populate their pages with links to their papers, artwork, tests, and projects made for their classes. One student included a link to a song about DNA she created for a science class. Another included a paper about Miep Gies, one of the people who helped hide Anne Frank and her family during World War II.

La Salle Senior Maria Smith, who’s headed to the University of Portland next year, said she enjoyed making her portfolio.

“I like reflecting upon myself and being proud of my work,” she said. “It’s nice to see how much I’ve grown.”

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