Generation Great: How One Student’s Passion Became an Elective
By Head of School Lee Thomsen

Blog post

In 2018, Country Day High School student Brianna (‘21) set out to honor the legacy of Dr. Carroll Cooks, founder of “No Child Left Behind,” by launching her own 501c3 non-profit organization, “Generation Great.”

The program helps remove the barriers to success encountered by underserved K-8 youth by cultivating a core of dedicated volunteers who provide practical academic support and serve as positive role models during one-hour tutoring sessions after school at the Oak Park Community Center. 

What’s more is this school year, Bri’s passion for helping others through her organization spurred the creation of a new elective class for Country Day high school students. Now, every week, Country Day high school students can participate in Generation Great offering one-on-one help, a supplemental curriculum, and weekly communication with parents and/or teachers while earning community service credit toward their graduation requirement at the same time.

“Tutoring these kids is the highlight of my week, and I truly mean that. Nothing is more rewarding than making a math problem click with a kid and seeing their face light up, or having them run and hug you when they first see you everyday. I am so blessed to have found such an amazing opportunity and really hope that I’m making a difference in these kids’ lives!” says Bri.

This program is an excellent example of the many ways our high school students pursue academic and personal excellence while demonstrating the core values of critical thinking, creativity, and compassion. 

If you’d like to learn more about our exceptional high school program, please join us next Wednesday, February 12, for our annual High School Preview event. This event is a great opportunity for our current 8th graders and other future families to explore our high school.

Attendees will meet current high school students and parents, engage with our expert faculty and staff, and walk through a “mini” schedule of classes. To kick off the evening, we host a Specialist Educator and Electives Fair in the gym. During the fair, families can learn more about a variety of academic and co-curricular offerings, such as our college counseling program, learning support and social-emotional learning curriculum, athletics, arts and music programs, popular electives such as our award-winning high school newspaper The Octagon or Medallion yearbook, and clubs like our new eSports team. There are so many interesting and exciting programs you might find it hard to get to every table!

Whether you have a lower school student curious about the future, an 8th grader weighing options for next year, or simply want to support our high school students, I invite everyone to attend next week’s High School Preview

Looking forward to seeing you there!