Schools are continuously looking for ways to encourage students and provide them opportunities to form positive bonds with their classmates. One way this is being done at the high school is through the addition of ROX, which stands for Ruling Our eXperiences. This program was introduced to TVHS by school counselor Mary Langenfeld.
ROX began as a research study in 2006 at The Ohio State University and is now the national nonprofit leader in programming, research and education focused on girls. Years of working with girls in school and community settings showed Dr. Lisa Hinkelman that challenges, such as drops in self-esteem, dealing with girl bullying, unhealthy dating relationships and sexual violence, lack of strong friendships and support systems and limited academic and career expectations left girls at a disadvantage. ROX serves girls throughout the country by providing evidence based programming for them, professional development for educators and counselors and parent workshops. ROX is open to all TVHS female students in grades 9-11.
Langenfeld facilitated ROX groups in two districts prior to coming to TVHS and wanted to offer it to students here as well.
“I saw amazing improvements in the girls that participated. ROX gave them a great support system and I wanted our girls to have that too,” she said. “Being a part of the ROX organization, I also see the amazing things they do around Ohio to benefit parents and communities and I wanted Pickaway County to have that.”
After participating in ROX, it is Langenfeld’s hope that the girls will feel more confident and empowered.
“All of the topics, in my opinion, are centered around girls feeling like they are worthy of the best and having the tools to make that happen for themselves,” she said. Over the course of the program, I have seen the girls form tremendous relationships in the group built on trust and respect. The girls are understanding that they are strong and deserve respect.”
Langenfeld is excited about the fact that ROX is expanding to East, Scioto and South Bloomfield next school year as well.
“I think girls should be involved so that they can get a support system of other girls in the school that is centered on being uplifting and dedicated to creating a better environment for them,” she said. “After this year, I would like to start a mentorship program with the ROX alumnae to be role models for younger girls in the high school, middle schools and elementary schools.”
ROX members Isabella Crego, Kylee Miller, Alyssa Steele and Avery Welsh are pictured with Langenfeld during one of their meetings.