George Joseph

Secretary, Superintendent’s Office 
Michelle McDowell

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Dear Kent families

Transitioning to the Cum Laude system

Theodore Roosevelt High School will transition to the Latin (or Cum Laude) System to recognize its top graduating seniors. We are making this change after a thorough investigation of similar policies in area school districts.

At its March meeting, the Kent City Schools Board of Education approved making the transition over the next three years. However, no changes will be made for the current senior class graduating in May 2016.

The junior class of 2016-17 and sophomore class of 2017-18 will continue naming a Valedictorian and Salutatorian, but Top Ten students will be recognized with the Latin Academic honors. These include the Latin terms of Cum Laude– graduating with Honor/ Praise, Magna Cum Laude– graduating with Great Honor/ Great Praise, and Summa Cum Laude– graduating with Highest Honor/ Highest Praise.

Roosevelt’s current freshman class of 2018-19 will use only the Latin system.

By adopting the Latin System (or cum laude system), our intent is to raise academic rigor at RHS. Ultimately, this will provide a system where a greater number of high school scholars are recognized and celebrated for their hard work and academic focus.

For a number of reasons, shifting to a cum laude system is in the best interest of all students, especially high achieving students.

  • Students are more inclined to pursue coursework in areas of passion (i.e. theater, arts, Career Technical Education or music) without fear of negatively impacting their class rank.
  • More of the district’s high achieving students are recognized for their cumulative academics.
  • High achieving students are more likely to select the CCP/AP/Honors curriculum without fear of harming their standing in class rank, which ultimately better prepares them for their post-secondary experience.

Our Roosevelt school counselors will continue to provide ranking information on an individual basis. Students and parents are encouraged to contact the high school guidance team members to determine whether colleges/universities and/or scholarship applications will request a class rank conversion or if guidance and assistance is needed in the post-secondary process in general.


George J. Joseph
Kent City Schools

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321 N. DePeyster St.
Kent OH 44240