Valedictorian and Salutatorian
What is a Valedictorian and Salutatorian?
The Valedictorian is the student who has reached the highest level of academic achievement out of all the students in their class. Valedictory honors are determined by GPA. The Valedictorian is the student ranked #1 in each graduating class. (It’s not easy to predict the GPA you will need in order to earn the title.)
Salutatorian is the student ranked second in the class after the valedictorian.
Our school uses weighted GPA, meaning students in higher level classes can earn higher GPA’s. The valedictorian typically earns the highest grades in the most difficult classes. For more information, see Board Policy 2700P1 here: https://www.cdaschools.org/Page/848
A weighted grading scale is used for the purpose of encouraging and rewarding students for taking Honors and Advanced Placement courses. The grading scale is calculated on a higher system. This scale will be used to determine the class rank, as well as the valedictorian and salutatorian. (Board Policy 612)
Weighted Grading Scale
UNWEIGHTED GRADES: Any A = 4.0
Any B = 3.0
Any C = 2.0
Any D = 1.0
Are you up for the challenge? To be the Valedictorian, you have to get As in the hardest classes our school has to offer. For the Val/Sal, students will want to take as many Honors and AP classes as they can.
See here for the GPA Planner. Please select “make a copy.”
- Start Early: Some middle schools offer honors courses as early as seventh or eighth grade. Being in those courses will set you on a path to honors courses in high school.
- Learn how your school chooses it’s Valedictorian. You’re on the right track! See Valedictorian/Salutatorian Procedure Board Policy 2700P1-7
- Keep in mind, being the Valedictorian will not guarantee you a spot to any elite college. Make sure to capitalize on opportunities that demonstrate you are a good citizen of your community. Also, your SAT score will play a large role in your college acceptances.
- Study and Attend:
- Make a study schedule --this may include 2-3 hours of studying at night. Or 3-4 hours every other night. Dedicating a set time to study will help you from feeling overwhelmed and/or procrastinating.
- Pace yourself to avoid burnout
- Take advantage of practice tests/quizzes. Even if your teacher doesn't assign them, they could be valuable to you.
- Flashcards! These can help you memorize information/concepts.
- Our curriculum is designed for in-person learning. Do your best to avoid missing out on critical lectures and information.
- Communicate. Make sure to keep open lines of communication with your teachers throughout the school year.
- Get Organized: Use a notebook for every class or clearly labeled binders. Keep a planner where you write down all of the homework due each day. Use the planner or a calendar to mark down important dates (Tests, quizzes, projects, etc.).
- Read Ahead: Reading ahead to the material your teacher will cover the next day or next week will give you a leg up on the course content.
- Get extra help when needed. We have Viking Tutors! Ask the Counseling Department for the list.
- Participate in extracurricular activities (Sports/Clubs). Get involved with your school.
- Maintain your social life. Your friends are important. These are times and memories you will cherish for years to come.
- Stay balanced. Trying to do it all can be stressful and time consuming, eventually leading to burnout. Make sure you are maintaining a health balance. Make time for yourself and time for those around you.
- Treat your body with care: Be healthy. Make sure you are eating breakfast and getting in physical activities (exercise, take a walk, hit the weights). Get plenty of rest --7-8 hours can help you feel energized and ready to conquer the day. A routine bedtime is encouraged.
- Remember: Try not to put too much pressure on yourself. Yes, grades are important --but so is your mental well being. Take good care.