The Power of Choice

Posted by Dr. Jonathon Wetherington, Principal on 2/9/2018 11:35:00 AM

As the principal of Paul Duke STEM High School, the most frequently asked question I hear is “Why would a student want to attend Paul Duke STEM High School?” This is such an interesting question because it is often asked by the parent of a student or a student carefully considering our school. Their question comes from a genuine desire to select the best educational experience for a particular student, and they are considering both their present and future options. Their question is driven by past experiences, social interactions, friendships, personal interests, and future aspirations. This question represents their desire to select the best option from several high-quality options. 
While I am able to answer their question with a description of our comprehensive multi-year STEM experience focused on learning through and with technology within a small school environment, I am most excited about the question itself because the question represents an opportunity for students and their families to “unlock their future.” The opportunity to consider the strengths of a student and match it with the strengths of a school is an exciting opportunity for students in the Norcross cluster. This opportunity to consider and select from either Norcross High School or Paul Duke STEM High School is an exciting opportunity for students and their parents to explore, inquire, and ultimately exercise their power of choice. In the Norcross cluster, choice is key that allows students to unlock options. 
Every day for the last two months, I have had the pleasure to see how this power of choice empowers students and helps them think about school in a different way. President Theodore Roosevelt said, “In any moment of decision, the best thing you can do is the right thing. The worst thing you can do is nothing.” With this in mind, I encourage students to exercise their power of choice as they think about their high school for next year.