Rockford High School students are M.A.D.!

Katy VanCuren

Assistant Principal

Rockford High School


Not MAD like angry, but MAD as an acronym that stands for Making A Difference. Students throughout the school have adopted the acronym to further the efforts that began in the fall of 2012. This year Rockford Public Schools hosted 6 evening presentations focused on developing healthy kids. Through educating our young people, as well as our parents and other community members who attended this series, we at Rockford Public Schools are committed to teaching families about the importance of being healthy and tackling issues such as; metal health, depression, anxiety, and drug and alcohol usage head on.

It didn’t take long for the students at Rockford High School to rally behind a cause that caught their attention. One of the evening presentations included representatives from the West Michigan Mental Health Foundation (WMMHF). The subject that evening was mental health and identifying the signs and symptoms of people suffering from a mental illness. The” benice.” organization, created by WMMHF, soon began working with student groups throughout the county. Rockford students were quick to jump on board. After a few meetings the groups focus began to take shape and in addition to wanting to spotlight mental health, students showed an interest in wanting to bring the student body together. The group wanted to be able to shrink the building and make each and every student at Rockford High School feel valued and important. Several staff members also attended a workshop sponsored by Josten’s regarding changing school climate and culture. It soon became evident that we were on to something and the group began to grow in numbers as well as ideas. Students and faculty also attended a TEDx event at Greenville High School in early May that furthered the discussion of climate and culture in our schools.

We now have close to 50 students and nearly a dozen staff members who are ready to launch M.A.D. at Rockford High School this fall. We are planning on hosting several events designed to give every student at RHS a sense of belonging. The group hopes to encourage all students to reach out and connect with peers as well as adults in the building. We want students and staff to really make a difference at Rockford High School. High school students who would like to become connected to the group are encouraged to contact Mrs. VanCuren, Mrs. Avram or Mrs. Gardner for more information.

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