Frequently Asked Questions

Where is Rock University High School located?

Rock University High School is located on the main campus of Blackhawk Technical College located at 6004 S. County Rd. G, Janesville, Wisconsin, 53546. Enter the building through the North Door at the front entrance; take the first right. Rock University High School is located in that hall in rooms 2602 and 2604.


Do students pay tuition?

The Rock University High School is a Public Charter School in the School District of Janesville. We do not charge tuition for resident students or open enrollment students. Parents will be charged the same yearly fees as students at non-charter high schools including class fees, laboratory and/or extracurricular activity fees.


How is Rock University High School different from other school district Charter Schools?

Rock University High School incorporates global competencies into a STEAM-organized curriculum (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics).  We are connected to college and university resources. School District students entering grades 10-12 are eligible to enroll. Rock University High School is not a credit-recovery school.


What about AP Classes?

Universities expect students to have made thoughtful choices that exemplify full preparation for college. Rigorous course work without performance in that course work is not what universities are looking for. Students should challenge themselves.

There are a lot of challenges in life. Learning to play an instrument, developing proficiency in a language, delving into an inquiry-based project where the student integrates content and creativity -- all are challenges that students should experience in high school.

Universities recognize that AP courses are not the only rigorous challenges in high school. Universities are also looking for students with research skills and the ability to self-motivate. Students may take up to two AP classes. Rock University High School sends a letter for students explaining Rock University High School’s rigor of inquiry-based learning.

However, students who have an interest in AP courses can elect to do so through our telepresence units that connect in to Craig or Parker, or may elect to take up to 2 courses on the other high school campuses.


How is Rock University High School related to the Janesville Academy for International Studies?

Rock University High School is absorbing all the best practices, the focus on global competencies and real world learning into a full day high school curriculum. The Janesville Academy for International Studies offered three credits to high school seniors only. Rock University High School takes all the best practices and incorporates them into a full-day high school for grades 10-12.

The Janesville Academy for International Studies student did not receive a diploma for the three credits; they earned a certificate in addition to their traditional high school diploma from Craig, Parker or the Virtual Academy. Students enrolled in the Janesville Academy for International Studies for the 2014-15 school year can expect to experience a globally charged learning experience and receive a certificate.

Rock University High School students will earn a high school diploma from Rock University High School. In addition, students at Rock University High School are eligible to apply for a Wisconsin Global Education Certificate that will recognize them as a well-rounded global scholar for colleges and universities.


What are the criteria for entry?

The Rock University High School is open to all grade eligible students. There are no prerequisites or criteria to determine entry. However, an interview with the Dean of Students that include student and the family will help determine if RUHS will be a good fit for those desiring to attend. Students seeking real world applications with science, technology, engineering, the humanities, the arts, social sciences, math, English language, global literacies and Spanish and Japanese language opportunities will find the Rock University High School a place for personal growth and achievement.


How are students selected?

Applications are available for incoming 10th-12th grade students. If more students apply than can be accommodated at Rock University High School, students will be selected by a lottery.

Parents and students will be informed of selection by May 30. After May 30 enrollment will be accepted in the order received.


Will transportation be provided?

Transportation routes and scheduling can be coordinated with the Janesville Transit System and the Beloit-Janesville Express.


How will the credits and diploma from the Rock University High School be viewed for college admission?

Rock University High School is recognized by public and private colleges and universities. Admissions offices are interested in students who evidence personal responsibility, self-motivation, persistence, self-advocacy, and academic excellence. Rock University High School students evidence leadership qualities and global competencies.

Rock University High School prepares students for college and careers with connections to universities and technical schools. The Rock University High School provides opportunities on the following campuses: 

  • University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
  • University of Wisconsin-Rock County
  • University of Wisconsin-Whitewater
  • Beloit College
  • Blackhawk Technical College


Will my child be able to participate in sports, band and other extra- or co-curricular activities?

Yes, extra- and co-curricular activities will be available through a student’s neighborhood school if they are residents of the Janesville School District. A student’s neighborhood school is the high school he or she would attend if not a student at the Rock University High School.

Students open enrolling into the Janesville School District as non-residents will be assigned a home high school per established criteria for this purpose. Students who attend Rock University High School retain their athletic/student life privileges at their home high school.


How will the Rock University High School meet the needs of a diverse student population?

The Rock University High School students have personalized student learning plans that enable students to accelerate learning opportunities as well as provide adequate time to achieve mastery in areas where needed.

Learning is tailored to the needs of a diverse student body. English language learners receive support and coursework to strengthen their academic skills. Students will experience multiple means for expression, engagement and achievement.


Will there be recognition for Academics and Extracurricular activities?

Yes, Rock University Honor Society recognizes academic achievement. Students may apply for induction into the honor society to receive awards and distinction at ceremonies and at graduation. Involvement in extracurricular activities will be recognized at ceremonies and with awards.


What does a typical day look like?

Students set rigorous personal and academic goals with their parent and teacher mentor to evidence mastery in content areas and achieve at levels competitive with local, state, and national standards.

Personalized learning plans allow student to set goals for higher learning and allows students to accelerate at a pace to fit their learning style. Instructors work with students in a 1 teacher to 20 student ratio to deliver individual attention and guidance.

Inquiry-based learning offers students the experience of problem-solving real world issues through hands on applications to science, technology, engineering, the humanities, the arts, social sciences, languages, and mathematics.

The Rock University High School classroom is a blended learning environment: students work in collaborative groups with a teacher mentor, face to face with a teacher mentor or independently to achieve mastery. All traditional and honors academic courses are in line with university and technical college requirements. Classes are enriched and designed to allow for deeper learning and prepare students for college and careers.

Student achievement is measured with a report card assessing mastery of both academic and 21st Century skills, a portfolio of student work, and two in-depth conferences between students, parents and teacher twice per semester.

The academic disciplines are integrated and students apply what they are learning to relevant projects. For example, a student may meet science and English standards though a project that evidences competency in meeting the standard. Also, a student may prepare a public presentation on a global health issue while meeting content standards in science, health and public speaking.


What if I want to take a class at another high school in the School District of Janesville?

You may take courses at other schools in the district with the consent of the school’s administration.


What are the graduation requirements?

Previously earned high school credits will be recognized by the Rock University High School. Our academic program meets the required state and district standards for science, math, social studies and language arts combined with integration of the arts and world languages. Additional valuable electives enhance and empower the student's electronic portfolio.


What makes this school innovative?

The Rock University High School gives students and parents a voice in education. Students engage in creative inquiry-based projects through science, technology, engineering, humanities, the arts, social sciences, languages, and mathematics.

Students have many opportunities to focus on the arts as they work to understand and seek solutions to real world problems. Partial immersion develops and improves critical world language skills in Spanish for English language learners and for Spanish language learners. The educational delivery model includes blended learning, some online learning and collaborative learning.


What’s really different other than being on the college campus?

Students learn through an inquiry based structure in which learning takes place as students explore and research to better understand issues in the world around them, then work collaboratively to develop ways to address those issues. The students work, communicate and collaborate with a variety of international peers and experts.

The integration of global competencies and opportunities provide students the experiences required to earn the Wisconsin Global Education Certificate recognized by the University of Wisconsin-Madison and other prestigious institutions as an additional endorsement with their Rock University High School Diploma. School at Rock University High School looks much less like “school” and much more like "college" and the "workplace."


Why a Charter School?

Choice is a powerful tool for parents seeking equal access to quality education for their children. Research tells us that there are different learning styles. Providing students with multiple ways to learn content improves achievement. Charter schools offer the flexibility in learning in a smaller, personalized environment. In Janesville, all Charter Schools are public schools.


Do Charter Schools take money away from public education?

Charter schools are public schools. They don't take public money away from public education. Charter schools receive money from their district based on student attendance. This money is paid to whichever public school system a student attends.



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Read about RUHS

The Tuesday, May 9, 2017 edition of The Janesville Gazette contained a feature story about Rock University High School.

"[Tom] Murphy is an ordinary kid who found his niche at Rock University High School. The high school . . . designed for students interested in global studies and foreign languages.  

In 2014, the program evolved into a charter school for sophomores, juniors and seniors. This year, it moved to Blackhawk Technical College, where it has been warmly embraced by the college's administration. The atmosphere is more like college, and students must be able to work independently.

During their senior year, students do a capstone project, which designed to showcase their knowledge on a particular topic using the interdisciplinary approach. The complexity of the curriculum attracted Murphy." 


Read more at Gazettextra.com

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