BHS holds freshman orientations

Published 9:42 am Tuesday, July 24, 2012

This July, Bainbridge High School has been offering “Bearcat Basics,” the second year it has held a special orientation for incoming freshmen.

Instead of having a single BHS Freshman Orientation for several hundred new students at one time, BHS now offers several smaller, more intimate sessions from which the first-time BHS students may choose to attend before their first day of class.

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BHS’s projected enrollment for the coming school year is 1,494 students, including 448 ninth graders, according to BHS Principal Tommie Howell.

“The goal of the Bearcat Basics sessions is for new students and their parents to be as comfortable as possible on their first day at the high school,” Howell said.

During one of the sessions held last week, about 50 students and their parents met in the BHS cafeteria. They were given a map of the school upon arrival; class schedules had been mailed out previously.

BHS Principal Tommie Howell welcomed the new students and introduced their assigned assistant principal, Christine Pugh, and 9th-grade guidance counselor, Dr. Myra Evans. Each of these administrators introduced themselves and gave a short talk about their respective roles in the students’ academic career.

Students were given a brief summary of the lunchroom procedures, locker rentals, parking procedures, arrival and dismissal times and a basic overview of the layout of the school.

Afterwards, Mr. Howell personally gave the group a guided tour of the entire BHS facility—including the media center, gymnasium, and helpful hints like how to move about the school to avoid the most crowded hallways. All students were given an opportunity to find their classrooms during the tour, if they desired.

“How many principals of schools the size of BHS take the time to ease the fears of incoming freshmen?” said Lee Bush, whose daughter Taylor is a freshman this year. “I was very impressed by the care taken by our BHS administration. Overall, I believe they have a great program in place to welcome their new 9th grade students.”

Bainbridge High School will hold a public Open House on Thursday, August 2 from 1 p.m. until 3 p.m. Students will have the opportunity to meet their teachers during the Open House.

“Once school starts, the students will receive much information in their Cats Connect advisement groups about the school and our programs,” Howell said. “The BHS Golden Guides will serve to assist new students once the school year starts.”

For more information, including the 2012-2013 supply list, parents may visit

Note: Some of the information in this article, as well as the accompanying pictures, were submitted by Lee Bush. Mrs. Bush and her husband, Lane, have two daughters attending BHS: Kay, a junior, and Taylor, a freshman. Their daughter, Sarah Margaret Bush, is a 2012 alumnus of BHS.