The Band of Brothers

 

The Band of Brothers is a schoolwide system that helps create leadership opportunities as well as growth in camaraderie across class lines. The system began in the Fall of 2007 and has continued to grow in strength and popularity each and every year. The students involved aspire to grow their Character to match-up with what the 4 pillars of the Band of Brothers stand for:

  • R=Respect “Show kindness and honor to all”
  • I=Integrity “Honesty, morality, and compassion to the highest degree”
  • C=Character “Do the right thing regardless of who is watching, even if it is the hard choice”
  • E=Excellence “Consistently performing at your maximum potential, while still striving to be better the next day”

The Band of Brothers embrace Christian Brother values that Brother Rice High School was built upon. The system enhances the pastoral care to all students, strengthens its sense of community, promotes the development of relationships, and enables a more proactive development of leadership skills before heading off to college.

The 6 Bands that the students become a part of are named after 5 Catholic Saints as well as 1 Archangel. Students are given the opportunity to learn about the unique lives these Saints lived, and are encouraged to mimic the character values that they displayed in their everyday life:

  • Brendan
  • Leo the Great
  • Maximilian Kolbe
  • Padre Pio
  • Raphael
  • Sebastian

Each Band consists of roughly 100 students, who are then broken up into 5 Mentor Groups, which consist of equal numbers of Freshmen, Sophomores, Junors, and Seniors. The 30 Mentor Groups in the school take time each day to communicate with each other, to compete alongside each other, and to ultimately grow closer over time. They will participate regularly in Mentor Group competitions against other Groups from different Bands. These daily 11-minute meetings are primarily led by student leaders (Roughly 70 each year). Band Captains (elected by the students) and Small Group Leaders (elected by the teachers and staff) set the tone for each day’s activities. Friendly Band competitions take place the entire school year in areas such as:

  • Highest G.P.A., Fewest detentions, Quiz Bowl Challenge
  • Mentor Group Dodgeball, Handball, Basketball, Volleyball
  • Field Day, Fund-raising, School Fight Song
  • March Madness, NFL, NBA, and MLB Playoff Predictions

Points for each of the above competitions are accumulated throughout the school year. The Band with the highest point total at the end of the school year becomes the proud recipient of a Championship T-shirt that can be worn during May in lieu of the school Dress Code, as well as having their Band name inscribed on the Edmund Rice Challenge Cup.

With the diverse competitions shown above, it’s easy to see that ALL members of the Band: old and young, tall and small, are extremely valuable to the Band itself. Whether students use their intellect, their athletic prowess, their self-control, their discipline, their social skills, their predictive powers, or their persuasive powers, each and every talent is of the utmost importance to the good of the Band. It’s a microcosm of the Body of Christ laid out in 1 Corinthians 12: 1-27. All members of the Band are important and are encouraged to use their God-given talents and gifts to advance the greater good of the Band as a whole, and in the process give glory to God.

 

Additional Information

Band System Goals

  • To enhance individual care by providing each student with at least three significant adults – a Band Dean, a Band Mentor, and a Guidance Counselor – who will monitor and support the academic, social, spiritual and behavioral growth and development of each student
  • To strengthen the bonds of Brother Rice family spirit across all classes, regardless of age
  • To create opportunities for all Seniors to be trained and to serve as leaders
  • To provide more leadership development opportunities for underclassmen
  • To advance each student’s interpersonal relationship skills

Band SystemTerminology

  • Band Director: The leader responsible for the effective administration of the Band system, Student Senate
  • Band Dean: A faculty member chosen to oversee the effective development of a Band
  • Band: A group of approximately 100 students in 9th through 12th grade
  • Mentor Group: A multi-divisional group of approximately 20 students within a Band (formerly known as “homeroom”)
  • Mentor Teacher: A faculty member assigned to oversee the effective development of a Mentor Group (formerly known as “homeroom teacher”)
  • Student President: Senior serving in the top student leadership position
  • Student Vice Presidents: Seniors serving in the top student leadership group
  • Band Captain: Juniors and Seniors who will lead students within a Band
  • Small Group Leader: Juniors and Senior who will lead students within a Mentor Group

Band System Facts

  • Each student will be assigned to the same Band his entire time at Rice
  • Each student will have the same Dean his entire time at Rice
  • Each Band is overseen by a Dean
  • Each Band has five Mentor Groups, each overseen by a Mentor Teacher
  • Each Mentor Group will contain students in 9th through 12th grade
  • There will be at least 2 elected Leaders per Mentor Group
  • Mentor Groups will meet every day for approximately 11 minutes
  • Mentor Group meetings will be a time, first and foremost, for building camaraderie across divisions

Mentor Teachers will monitor and support the academic, social, spiritual, and behavioral growth of the students in the Mentor Group.

  • Band Deans will assist Mentors in their support of students, and they will oversee the effective running of the Band
  • Band Deans and Mentor Teachers will serve as another point of contact and support for parents
  • School counselors will work closely with Mentor Teachers and Deans to support the students

Questions and Answers

Will students lose their class identity?
No. The school will continue to hold many activities by class, including the academic curriculum, sports, lunch periods, Class meetings, Class mixers, Junior/Senior Prom, etc.

Will all students become leaders?
Yes, that is the goal. The school recognizes that there are many different levels and styles of leadership. At the conclusion of his Junior year, each student will participate in an in-depth Christian Brother Leadership Training Program that will prepare him for his role as a Senior Leader. Underclassmen also will be called to lead in various capacities throughout high school .

Will the daily schedule change because of the Band System?
Yes. While class time will remain essentially the same, the time allotted for Mentor Group and Band activities may necessitate other changes in the schedule.

Does the Band System really work?
Yes. Prior to its implementation, our extensive research indicated that it can have a positive, transforming effect on a school family; how effective that change is depends on the leadership and effort of the student body. After four years of the Band system, positive results are measuarble in many areas, including grades, discipline, Christian service, etc.

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