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Why I Came to Nova

    Whenever someone asks me, “What school do you go to?” I tend to freeze-up for a second. There are always two responses I receive when I tell them I go to Nova High School: ‘I’ve never heard of that school,’ or ‘Oh, that’s an alternative school, isn’t it?’ Throughout the two years I’ve been going here, only my aunt has known about the school (before I explained what it is) because she does music lessons at OLG (Our Lady of Guadalupe), and some of her students have gone here. When I explain to the curious adult that we don’t have grades and that our classes switch every other day, they act confused and gain a look of “This kid must be dumb,” on their face. Sure, the concept of the school might be difficult to grasp, but I have several reasons as to why it was a good choice of a school for me.

    In the summer of eighth grade, my family and I moved from Butte, Montana to West Seattle. The education program in that town was very much like that of West Seattle High and Garfield, which wasn’t the adequate style of teaching for me. Yes, I had a 4.0 leaving middle school, but that was because of how much work my friends and I put into teaching ourselves. The teachers made their classes memory-dependent, meaning they would assign for us to read a paragraph, write down some vocabulary words, have a test and then move on to the next subject. They were focused on trying to get ahead to teach us higher-grade work, which most of the students weren’t ready to move on to.

    I was actually born in Seattle, but moved to Montana when I was four years old. When I found out that some of my childhood friends were going to go to Nova, it sounded like the perfect opportunity for me to reunite with them and not be completely lost. One friend was transferring here from Kennedy, while the other was a freshman like me. They were both dissatisfied with their schools for numerous reasons. A big factor as to why they transferred was because they wanted to learn in a “woke” environment. They told me about how Nova was very socially-aware of the issues going on around us, which most people fail to notice. They also told me about the diversity this school had. These were things that Montana didn’t have. Everybody was the same there, and the idea of being different was frowned upon by the community. Ultimately, this was the deciding factor.

    Two years later, I have been enjoying every moment at Nova. The teaching style is on the opposite end of the spectrum. The teachers take time to make sure that you understand what they’re trying to teach you, and don’t move on until you do. I’ve been enlightened on a lot of social issues our society is facing, and I’ve been reunited with old friends. In all honesty, moving to Seattle has been a blessing for me and I’m proud to be a student at Nova High School.