Riverbend provides various academic curriculums with controversial reputations. This article will be focused on dispelling and admitting rumors on one of these. The Commonwealth Governor’s School’s (CGS) reputation presents the students as “isolated and [that they] don’t talk to anyone else in the school,” according to Jonathan James, a non-CGS student.

CGS is based on a school-within-a-school model. The half-day program is designed to challenge students in the four major academic content areas through problem-based instruction appropriate for gifted and highly motivated learners and to focus on the community issues of environment, development, and service.

The opinions of what students think the program is similar. Both CGS and regular high school students believe that the course presents different ways to learn and provides a rigorous learning experience.

“CGS is quite literally a guinea pig [experiment] because we try different things while still trying to attain the same goals [as regular school students],” said CGS student Jeffery McAteer.

Being a CGS student myself, I agree with my peer when comparing CGS to an experiment. Governor’s School is basically a trial in which the school can determine whether or not students can be responsible enough to use technology appropriately, actively participate in trips outside of school, or learn through different techniques.

“[I think] they have a whole bunch of work and are pushed in the direction to have a bright future,” said Malissa Rivas, a non-CGS student.

Rivas isn’t exactly wrong with her opinion. It’s not the program itself that pushes the students to have a bright future, but it has students who push themselves with the aid of their teachers. When participating in the program, the teachers state that they believe in the students, and they provide a positive atmosphere that makes students want to push themselves.

“It’s something for smart kids, an entire education for smart kids to get scholarships,” said Avion Norman, a non-CGS student.

CGS is a program anyone could have applied to in the eighth grade. The students who are accepted into the program not only do well grade-wise but also show the character, heart, and passion that appeal to the interviewers.

Despite the rumors of CGS students “being geeks, playing chess, and are antisocial,” according to CGS student James Irwin, students actively participate within several other parts of school like a regular high school student: Katie Becker is the president of the Spanish Club, Jasmine Heyward is in DECA, and Andrew Brown runs RHS cross-country.