RHHS Wildcats: News You Can Use

#WEareRH - Friday, 12/1/17

A Fairy Tale Christmas Carol this weekend

Please join us for the RHHS Drama production of "A Fairy Tale Christmas Carol". RHHS Drama students will perform this on Friday, 12/1, and Saturday, 12/2, at 7pm at Richmond Hill Elementary School. Tickets are $5.

Class Dues - after 12/1, $5 late fee!

Class Dues are $30 each year. Students pay only for the years that they were at RHHS. Dues must be paid online using MyPaymentsPlus. All dues must be paid by Friday, December 1st. Students paying after December 1st will incur a $5 late charge. For Juniors and Seniors, these dues cover the cost of your prom ticket. The deadline to pay dues and have the prom ticket included as part of your dues is FRIDAY, February 23, 2018. If you do not pay dues by February 23, 2018, and you choose to go to prom, you will have to purchase a prom ticket separately at a cost of $125. Thanks for paying class dues before December 1st.

We need your feedback!

RHHS is committed to providing improved support for students and parents. In an effort to make sure we are developing presentations and lessons that are relevant and needed, we'd like to ask you to provide some feedback. Please take a few minutes to complete the Parent Needs Assessment by following the link below. Your responses will help us better identify specific needs.

RHHS Parent Needs Assessment

End of Course testing begins next week

State-mandated End of Course tests begin next week. Information on specific course test dates are below. During these tests, we cannot interrupt the test once it has begun. Please make sure you haven't scheduled any appointments requiring your child to be absent. These tests account for 20% of your child's course grade, so we make every effort to provide the most appropriate testing environment possible.

Monday - Wednesday, 12/4-12/6: American Literature

Thursday - Friday, 12/7-12/8: Algebra I and Geometry

Monday - Tuesday, 12/11-12/12: US History and Economics

Wednesday - Thursday, 12/13-12/14: Biology and Physical Science

If you have questions about any of these tests, please contact your child's course teacher or Mr. Jonathan Lea, our EOC test administrator.

Passion on the Hill

We are excited to share with you a new student-produced series, Passion on the Hill. RHHS Senior Hannah Yontz is producing these each week, and each week will feature a video about a faculty/staff member and their passion. These productions are exceptional, and each one has left me speechless. I know you will feel the same.

This week our Passion on the Hill episode features math teacher and RHHS Teacher of the Year 2016 Sara Goldrick and her passion, Clemson University!


Schedules - second semester

As we begin looking forward to next semester, our counselors and advisors are reviewing schedules to ensure students are placed correctly. Once any necessary changes have been made, students will receive a copy of their schedule in advisement on Friday, 12/15/17. Students will have until Tuesday, 12/19/2017 to note any requests for corrections on their schedules, and submit back to their advisor. Please note that requests for teacher changes will not be honored. In addition, any requests to change introductory level electives will not likely be possible due to most of these classes being full. Counselors will correct any additional errors by the first day of second semesterl, and students will be provided with an updated copy of their schedule.

Teacher survey posted

At the end of our first semester, we ask each student to complete a short survey for each of his/her teachers. The feedback provided by students is shared with each teacher, and the administrative staff of the school also reviews this information. Each teacher is expected to read and review the feedback and each teacher will meet with his/her supervisor in early January to discuss opportunities for improvement. A link to this survey is posted on the school homepage and will be open through next Friday. Each teacher is expected to provide time during class for each student to complete the survey. Please know we value feedback, and we are committed to providing the best instruction possible for each child.

AP Test Registration Opens Soon

Advanced Placement Exam Registration is now open.

Students may register for exams and begin making full or partial payments toward the cost of their AP exams beginning November 1, 2017.

Please visit the following link to register for 2018 AP exams:


Obligations List

RHHS maintains an Obligations List. The Obligations List notes students who have an obligation - this could be a detention not served, a form not returned, or a fee/fine. As students clear the obligation, their name comes off of the list. Students on the Obligations List are ineligible for school related activities such as Winter Formal and Exam Exemption and early release on exam days. Teachers receive this list daily, and students can ask any teacher if they are on the list and for what reason. Similarly, you could email any of your child's teachers and ask the same.

Winter Formal: December 8th

Winter Formal is scheduled for Friday, December 8th, 7:30-10:30pm at the Mackey House.

Cost is $27 with Discount Code: Winter Formal (valid until Nov. 18th) then the price will be $32.

Tickets may be purchased through My Payments Plus


Want to pay for your date? Fill out this form: http://tinyurl.com/WFDate Then it will appear in My Payments Plus.

Want to take a date from another school? Guests must be approved

Not sure if your dress is in code? See Ms. Buchner or Ms. Tanner

Winter Formal is open to all grade levels, but students must be cleared from the Obligations List in order to purchase a ticket.

6th Annual Holiday Baseball Camp

This one day camp will focus on the fundamentals of hitting, pitching, bunting, fielding, and strength and conditioning.

Participants should bring their bat, helmet, glove, and cleats. They should also wear baseball pants, warm clothes, and protective gear. Participants should also bring a packed lunch.

Camp staff includes RHHS Baseball coaches and current RHHS players

Who: ages 6-13

Location: RHHS

Date/Time: Friday, 12-22, 10am-2pm

Cost: 1 new toy - bring day of camp

All donated toys will be taken to Ella's of RH for distribution to local families during this holiday season.

Please complete the registration form using the link below-


SAT and ACT test dates and registration information

The SAT and ACT are given several times throughout each school year. Please click the links below for additional information about test dates, registration deadlines, and information about how to register.

SAT information

ACT information

Taking care of our students

What is Depression?

Depression is a frequently used word in conversation and in the media. It is used synonymously with sad. Depression is a much stronger and more intense emotion than sad. Sadness comes and goes quickly without really affecting your day. Depression is sadness that lasts weeks and is so intense that the individual cannot function or cannot function well. Not only is the life of the depressed individual affected, so are the lives of the individuals who care about the depressed individual.

Prevalence of Depression in Teens

Nine percent of youth between the ages of 12 and 17 experience at least one major depressive episode each year. In a school the size of Richmond Hill High School (approximately 2200 students), that is approximately 200 students. Nationally, fewer than half, 40.3% receive treatment. If RHHS is statistically average, we have approximately 200 students with Major Depressive Disorder. While approximately 89 of these students are receiving treatment, approximately 120 of students with MDD are not receiving treatment, putting them at risk of self-medicating and/or at risk of attempting suicide.

How do I know if my teen is depressed?

You may suspect that your teen is depressed but not be sure. “Risk factors include being under stress; experiencing loss; or having attention, learning, or conduct disorders.” The only way to know for sure is to have your child checked out by a mental health provider or by a medical care provider. There are indicators, that if present, indicate that a parent should have their teens evaluated for depression. Typical teens are sad when bad things happen but are generally able to cope and recover soon. Teens experiencing major depression are so sad that every aspect of life is affected. They struggle to carry out daily routine for two or more weeks.

If parents suspect that their child may be depressed, treatment is key to managing a mental illness. In extreme cases, it may be the difference between life and death. In seeking treatment, the teen’s pediatrician or the family physician is a good first stop. The pediatrician/family physician can rule out physical illnesses and refer the child to a mental health provider. Local mental health agencies can also be a good starting point. An advantage of getting a referral from the family physician or pediatrician is that the medical provider will refer the child to a mental health provider with whom she already has a working relationship. Treatment for mental health often includes both medication and counseling. Using a mental health provider that already works with your healthcare provider promotes better treatment.

Parenting a depressed teen

Parents are key to helping their teens manage depression. Parents’ first key step is recognizing the possibility that their teen may be depressed and seek intervention. The pediatrician/family physician is a great first step.

Tips for dealing with your depressed teen:

Do not blame your teen. Depression is not a choice. Your teen has a real health problem that needs treatment to improve. Have realistic expectations. Depression is going to affect the teen’s performance of everyday activities - chores, school work, homework, hygiene, social interaction, etc. Let your teen know you understand they are doing the best they can.

Offer consistent emotional support and understanding. Parents are often scared and confused when their teen is depressed. A depressed teen needs empathy, compassion, and patience from his/her parents. Let your teen know you love them. Express to them that depression is not a weakness or failure. Be understanding and encouraging. Give them hope, so they will believe that things will get better.

  • Encourage social interaction. Encourage your teen to invite a friend over for to watch a movie, play a board game, etc. Having a routine that includes regular outings can be helpful.

  • Encourage a healthy lifestyle – get enough sleep, exercise, and proper nutrition.

  • Practice self-care. Parents, make sure you are sleeping enough, eating nutritious meals, and exercising.

A possible reason for increased incidents of teen depression

Between 2010 and 2015 teen depression has increased 33%. Teen suicide attempts have increased 23%, while the number of deaths by suicide have increased 31%. Depression, suicide attempts, and suicide has increased for those born after 1995. This increase is across all racial and socioeconomic groups in all regions of the USA” (Twenge, et.el) “point to increased usage of smartphones by teen as the cause of the increase in depression and suicide, (and) ...according to the Pew Research Center, smartphone ownership crossed the 50 percent threshold in late 2012 - right when teen depression and suicide began to increase. By 2015, 73 percent of teens had access to a smartphone.” Time spent online is also linked to mental health.

We encourage you to actively monitor your child's emotional health as well as his/her physical health. Our counselors can serve as a resource if you have questions about your child's behavior, or if you need additional information. We want to encourage a strong working relationship among you, your child, and your child's counselor.


Depression in Teens. Mental Health America

Suicide. Mental Health America

Depression. Anxiety and Depression Association of America

Teen Depression Treatment. Paradigm San Francisco

7 Ways to Help a Depressed Teen. Paradigm SanFrancisco

Fischer, Mary (2014). Students with depression. ASCA School Counselor

Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, Missouri Department of Mental Health, and national Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare (2012) Youth Mental Health First Aid USA for Adults Assisting Young People

Twenge, Jean (2017). With teen mental health deteriorating over five years, there’s a likely culprit. The Conversation