Student Life

Becoming an Upper School Gryphon

By Sheridan S. ’26

The Class of 2026 is made up of eighty-five students, most of whom are rising from Crystal’s middle school, but some of whom are coming in from many other places. The twenty-four new students come from public, charter, and private schools all over the Bay Area, and even out of the county, state, and country!

A quick, three-question poll assessed how new students are adjusting to Crystal as opposed to students from the middle school. Seventy-four students from the freshman class participated in the survey, twenty-four new students and fifty returning students. 

Did you feel prepared for the upper school? 

More than half of the surveyed returning students (56%) stated that they felt prepared, while 20% felt in the middle, and 24% felt unprepared. It was completely different for the new students. A majority of 50% expressed that they felt unprepared, while about 22% were in the middle. Only 28% felt prepared for the upper school. 

By now, do you feel adjusted? 

74% of the fifty surveyed returning students stated that they felt adjusted to the upper school, and 22% felt in the middle. Only 4% of returning students felt that they were not yet adjusted to the upper school. The majority of the new upper school students, about 42%, felt in the middle when asked if they felt adjusted to the upper school. Approximately 38% of new students felt adjusted, while 21% did not yet feel adjusted to the new environment. 

What could be some things done to help you feel more prepared/adjusted?

Many new students gave feedback on how they could have been more prepared, adjusted, and welcomed into the Crystal community. More support for the new students was almost universal. One freshman suggested having summer training for the new students to get to know one another and the Crystal environment. Other ninth-grade students proposed opportunities to meet both students and teachers from other grades. 

However, many new students also agree that even if they were not as prepared as their peers coming in from middle school, Crystal’s administration has done a lot to help and support them navigate the change. Most are feeling comfortable and adjusted to their classes. 

Returning students from the middle school also pitched in their ideas for how they could have been more prepared for the upper school. A few students agreed that a list of supplies before the school year started would have been beneficial. 

Thank you to everyone who helped out and participated in the survey!

Categories: Student Life

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