On behalf of the staff and administration of Washburn Rural High School, I am excited to extend to you our best wishes for a productive and exciting new school year. Let me assure you that the educational opportunities for students at WRHS are excellent, both by reputation and by the measured accomplishments of our students.
We enjoy one of the best reputations of any public high school in the State of Kansas! Last year, for example, we produced five National Merit Finalists, one National Merit Hispanic Scholar, and seven National Merit Commended Scholars!
For those of you following the life of our school, you also know of our athletic and extracurricular successes last year. We were the State Champions in 4-Speaker Debate and Girls’ Basketball; we had 3 individual State Champs: Preston Williams-Wrestling, Lauren Buchanan-Girls’ Bowling, and Jaybe Shufelberger-3200 meter and 800 meter Track and Field; we were the Regional Champions in Boys’ Soccer, Girls’ Golf, Girls’ Bowling, Boys’ Golf, Girls’ Soccer, Softball, and Scholars’ Bowl; we were the 2018-19 Centennial League Champions in Boys’ Soccer, Boys’ Cross Country, Volleyball, Scholars’ Bowl, Girls’ Golf, Girls’ Soccer, Baseball, Softball, Boys’ Track and Field, and Boys’ Golf; and the Centennial League Co-Champions in Boys’ and Girls’ Basketball; and; we were the Sub-State champions in Volleyball, Boys’ Basketball and Girls’ Basketball. We placed 2nd at the 6-A State Tournament in Boys’ Basketball, Softball and Girls’ Soccer and 3rd in Baseball and Girls’ Bowling.
Our extra-curricular and co-curricular programs continue to flourish. We were named as the National Performing Arts School of Excellence by the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) and the Kansas State High School Activities Association (KSHSAA). This award is given to just one school in the nation each year. The performing arts award encompasses band, orchestra, vocal music, theatre, dance, speech, and debate. Our Air Force JROTC unit was one of two units in Kansas to receive the prestigious “Distinguished Unit Award” last year. WRHS Chorale and This Generation completed a fabulous trip to Costa Mesa, California to perform on the beautiful Segerstrom Concert Hall Stage with other choirs across the country. Our Debate and Forensics squads won close to 500 team and individual awards. Our Debate program is ranked 7th in the nation in terms of our chapter strength (a combination of number of competitors and success) with the National Speech and Debate Association. Our cheerleaders placed 2nd in the State Game Day Cheer Competition; the Dancin’ Blues won several awards at two events- most notably The Sweepstakes award at Miss Kansas. Washburn Rural Chorale received a “1” rating at the State Large Group Contest for the 34th consecutive year!
Our staff received numerous awards throughout this past year: Duane Zlatnik was named the KWCA Assistant Coach of the Year. Matthew Swedlund-Cross Country, Brian Hensyel-Boys’ Soccer, and Kevin Muff-Boys’ Basketball, were named City Coaches of the Year. Damon Parker-Wrestling, Kevin Bordewick-Girls’ Basketball, Kevin Muff-Boys’ Basketball and Jared Goehring-Boys’ Golf, were all named Centennial League Coach of the Year. The parents, staff, students and community which WRHS serves have much to be proud of. It was a truly exciting year!
In the coming year, I invite you to become a partner with us in your child's education, and in doing so, learn more about their "home away from home" - Washburn Rural High School. Attend their athletic events. Go to their concerts. Ask them about their school work. Talk with their teachers. Ask how you can volunteer in our building. By developing a deeper understanding of all that is available to your students at WRHS, you will help us to unlock the extraordinary potential within each one of them.
We look forward to the upcoming year with great hope and an unwavering belief in the promise of our young people. We wish all of you the very best! If we can ever be of service to you, please do not hesitate to call.