Moravia High School is an Appanoose County secondary school located in Moravia, Iowa. The sports teams are collectively called “The Mohawks”. A small school district (142 students in grades 7-12), it has been growing in recent years. It was mentioned as a bronze medal school in U.S. News & World Report’s “Best High Schools”. – via Wikipedia
I graduated from Moravia High School fourth in my class… of twenty-eight. I was active in many extra-curriculars like: Student Council (President for 2 years), Brain/Quiz Bowl (Team Captain), FCCLA/FHA (State Convention Delegate 2001), Choir, and Show Choir. I actually posted years ago where I spent my time in high school (hint: very little in actual classes). Because of my activities, I was able to get out of class pretty often to do things like fill the soda machines, setup or tear down student council events like homecoming and dances, work with the PCIT team to install/fix district computers, travel to Brain Bowl meets, and visit another local school as part of a Health class I was taking over the Iowa Communications Network. And even though I didn’t spend as much time in class as the State of Iowa would like, I finished with a quality GPA and a diverse set of skills that would help shape me into who I am today.
People like to knock small schools… But with more than a decade of experience between high school and today, I feel privileged for the opportunity to have gone to a small school. It afforded me the kind of personal community that as a kid you couldn’t wait to escape. It’s only now that I realize how much of a family my little school really gave me.
The other benefit of a small school is the ability you have to experience more, and diversify your interests. The multi-sport athlete in big schools is all but history. But in small schools, it’s more than likely you’ll play the same guys on the gridiron, as you do on the court, as you do on the diamond. You think Dowling/Valley have a rivalry? You should have seen the grudge matches we had with Moulton-Udell game after game, sport after sport. And as you saw from the extra-curricular activities I was involved in above, I also got to experience arts, clubs, sports, government, and technology. In a small school, there’s almost always room for you in extra-curriculars.
I’m grateful for my high school experience, and appreciative for who I am because of it.
You see, in a small town you have maybe 30 kids in your class. The same kids from preschool through graduation. Each year is new and different, but builds right on top of the last. When its said and done, those 30 others are as close as brothers and sisters. The key to building strong relationships is through shared experiences, and it’s with these individuals you have nearly every day of 15 years to make that happen. You share in their excitement when they catch their first fish on the 5th Grade Fun Day. You cry with them when a mom, dad, brother or sister passes. And you help them celebrate when they beat brain cancer into remission, and recover from a tractor accident that should have all but killed them.
Small towns and small schools are really just big families.