Ah snap…. Just ummmm grab an Eagle Rock Picture
You are Eagles. No matter how short your experience is this year as an incoming 7th grader or the few 8th graders, this school will accept you all with open arms as we leave you this campus with your fellow upperclassmen. An eagle among many, over two thousand five hundred to be exact. In time you will see what we lived; people who were constantly shuffling down the halls during lunch and in between classes. Finding a place to eat or enjoy a view in this school you all have not yet had the chance to experience. The grand scale of how large this place is makes it almost impossible to not feel you have to stand out. Its size should constantly remind you all that we come from many different backgrounds, and to each his own. Your classmates, real people you have yet to meet in person. Be open minded upon entering this school. Your standards or judgements you came with from elementary should be malleable, not stubborn. Learn to respect each other as Eagles, or LAUSD students of a system that has given many the opportunity to leave abject poverty.
It’s this great ability to receive a free public education that has caused many of your parents to send you to this school, which offers the unique experience of having high school students interacting with you middle schoolers; therefore, we have you set at a higher standard.The R.O.C.K, our acronym for a goal staff and students share, is providing the best environment for learning, as this acronym represents the traits we seek in all students on campus. Respect represents the first letter of this acronym, and provides a basis for participation in this school, because the greatest part about coming to school everyday is that no matter how poor, what you’ve been through in any family, or what neighborhood you grow up in, there will always be someone treating you the same. No bias or difference in treatment, you respect one another for the character they possess, not of any factors they cannot control. Diversity is our strength; to understand each other and learn to respect our differences and accept new information about ourselves in this world. Each of us is capable of showing empathy to provide strength in our struggles to learn.
Along with this empathy you alone can provide, so can the school itself provide assistance in your journey. Incoming students will experience what we as students have scarcely seen and heard, a revitalization and revamping of this school and its materials. In addition to access to computers in almost every classroom, new tables specifically made for this change, and gyms newly refurbished since their 1970’s creation, you will have in your possession new textbooks that we ourselves could compare the old to new. It’s why the school asks you to optimize effort, the second letter of ROCK acronym. Use your resources to the fullest extent, never take these materials for granted and never waste time in your quest for success of being a better student or athlete in this school; take advantage of these tools the school has provided for you, and the new opportunities that will allow you and your peers to challenge yourself and explore different avenues as you grow older. Growing older and wiser, you will feel the need to employ the third letter of ROCK, challenge learning. Your efforts to do this will be strong but even stronger in cooperation with other students. Challenge learning involves more than putting the world on your shoulders, discover the benefits of challenging your comfort around other people.
People need the kindness we have, that ability to give it through time spent with each other no matter how small. It’s the last letter of ROCK, kindness matters. Going back to that higher standard, you as Jr/Sr students of ERHS are expected to behave with the best intentions, showing kindness whenever possible. What we mean by kindness matters is that the little things you may do everyday at this school make the monotony of coming to school that much better for the people around you. Opening doors, saying hello, enjoying sports together with friends playing alone, and navigating many other interactions like this in a foreign place can be confusing. The class of 2026 must help each other discover the unknown, and the class of 2025 have to re-engage in something forgotten.
But these newer classes, much like the class of 2021, will understand that the school is constantly changing, before the pandemic and probably long after these events, classes will continue to experience change. This is the school that we as seniors have been attending day in and day out to improve ourselves as individuals so that we may graduate knowing we tried, matter not what we failed to pursue as students or young adults but how we got here to the finish line.Your class is special in that you have to pursue a normalcy we took for granted as students, and at the same time find ways of making the campus better for future classes to improve themselves further. Through struggles I encourage you all to look back on this school’s history and find strength in their own success to overcome struggles along the way as this 90+ year old school has experienced its own fair share of history. There in your auditorium, you’ll find the Hall of Fame, and there in your yearbook are the names of many students who gave up their lives in the search for freedom in other countries. Whether it be World War II, Korea, Vietnam, or the wars of today, seniors are still leaving ERHS and going on to serve this country. Above all we as graduating seniors ask that you respect the campus we grew up in, to pick up your trash, respect the plaques of Mr. Kim and Mr. Henberger. Cherish the walls we kept clean.