We are always proud of our students for working hard to meet the expectations Robert Land Academy sets, in all aspects of school life including athletics, academics, and personal behavior. It isn’t always easy and students will struggle to maintain those expectations from time to time. It is worth it, however, as students learn self-discipline, improve their academics and enroll in post-secondary institutions, and develop the life skills necessary to be successful in all aspects of life.
It may seem odd, but this was most apparent late last week as Robert Land Academy hit the wrestling mats at another local high school.
We were successful in the wrestling tournament, bringing home three silver medals and watching as our small team of wrestlers improved their skills, learned some lessons to use in their next bouts, and developed both physical and mental strength, and I was very proud of the boys for their performance.
I was most proud however, when I heard how others at the tournament spoke of our students.
A few other coaches and parents from other teams commented on how our students conducted themselves at the tournament, noting “they seem like such nice boys” and that we are “doing something right at RLA”.
As our wrestling coach put it – the boys were noticeable in a positive way.
It’s not that boys from other schools are misbehaving or conduct themselves poorly, and I’m sure boys from other schools are just as nice as our students. The difference, and the reason parents and coaches at this tournament noticed and mentioned RLA’s conduct, is in how our students carry themselves and their deportment.
The unique program at Robert Land Academy is based in military structure. Both staff and students address each other with respect and by title or “sir” or “ma’am”, students practice drill on a regular basis and walk in formation between classes, they are expected to act with proper manners at all times, and they are taught how to live life with courage, commitment, loyalty, labour and honour.
So how does this translate into a wrestling team being noticeably positive in an environment full of high school students from numerous other schools? The proper conduct they learn at RLA, as well as the pride they take in their achievements, is visible in our students. From their straight backs and good posture to being respectful to each other and to those they meet, from performing their best at all times to accepting defeat with grace and good sportsmanship, from taking care of their appearance and taking pride in themselves to saying sir and ma’am when appropriate: Robert Land Academy students are learning how to conduct themselves in a way that shows respect and commands respect, and it shows.
And it’s not just the wrestling team. All of our students conduct themselves in this way and all of our students make us proud when their deportment demonstrates their understanding of the importance of respect, for ourselves and for each other.