Pictures capture final assembly; retired faculty returns

Daphne Yu

The Flashback assembly featured the tunes of the jazz ensemble, performances by acting classes and an array of speakers and award winners.

This year’s assembly also reunited many former administrators and alumni to celebrate RBHS’s 40th anniversary.

Dr. Wayne Walker, the first principal of RBHS and creator of the motto ”freedom with responsibility,” spoke at the assembly Friday morning. He especially took pride in Rock Bridge’s environment.

“Traditionally, we felt like schools were very rigid and very structured,” Walker said. “People were expected to graduate high school and walk across the stage and get their diploma, then go to college and know how to manage their time and make decisions when they never had to do that before.”

After Walker retired from RBHS in 1992, he focused on his family, saying his greatest accomplishment since he left was his grandchildren. But he said he still holds a fondness for the students here.

“The fact that [RBHS] started so small, and grew to be so big is amazing,” he said.

Kathy Ritter, who served the role of math teacher, activities principal and school principal for 20 years, said although RBHS has doubled in size since it first opened its doors, the spirit of putting the students first has remained a constant.

“The teachers would always say, ‘How do we keep it personal? How do we pay attention to one student at a time,’” said Ritter, who retired in 2010, “‘and keep the freedom with responsibility?’”

Her favorite thing about RBHS, she said, were the students.

“They always have been and always will be my favorite part of Rock Bridge,” said Ritter who, since retirement, has traveled the world, visiting France, Italy, Rwanda and other exotic locations.

Administrators weren’t the only ones to attend the assembly. Donna Snyder, one of the secretaries here when it first started in 1973, reminisced on old, yet fond memories.

“We were all like a family,” Snyder said. “My favorite part about [RBHS] was the sense of camaraderie that came with the job. It’s great that we can come back after so many years and still be good friends.”

Updated May 5 by Yasmeen Taranissi
Today was the final assembly of the school year, also known as the Flashback Assembly, giving seniors a last look and reflection of the past year. The day that so many hoped and dreaded – graduation – is just around the corner on May 24. With only two weeks left of school for the seniors, those present joined together in the gym to meet name the teacher of the year, ‘Bruin of My Life’ recipients and the ‘Everyday Bruin’  recipients.
[slideshow id=311 w=600 h=400] By Drew Rodgers

Photos by Mikaela Acton