March 12th Raptor Events


New Club- Envirothon

NCF-Envirothon is an annual environmentally themed academic competition for high school aged students organized by the NCF-Envirothon a program of the National Conservation Foundation. The competition is held by the United States and Canada on a regional, state, and bi-national level. Envirothon combines in-class and hands-on environmental education in a competition setting which involves a problem-solving presentation as well as written field tests. The competition tests students on five core subjects- aquatic ecology, forestry, soils and land use, wildlife- along with a fifth annually-changing subtopic which focuses on relevant environmental issues. Currently, roughly 500,000 students from forty-five U.S. states and nine Canadian provinces/territories participate in the competition.

The club meets every Wednesday during lunch in Ms. Manzers room. Contact either Ms. Manzer or Sandy Collins for details.

World Flex Day

Changing the World Flex Day – April 20th

This year RTHS is sending the entire Sophomore class to one of six RTP companies for a half day on-site experience of what our RTP neighbors do every day! The sophomores will be visiting one of these companies:

This program is in partnership with the RTP Rotary, The RTP, the NC Biotech Center and the NC Science Festival, to allow our young people to understand how RTP is “Changing the World” through the innovative work that is done here.

Even better, the students are going to be creating, in real time, a portfolio of “digital artifacts” about the company that they are visiting, through an app called Amirabilia. They will be interviewing employees, doing labs or activities or case studies, visiting multiple departments, and learning the key contributions of the company they visit – and collecting all that information into Amirabilia for students outside the Triangle to learn about RTP!

So, Parents and Students! Your job is threefold:

    1. Sign up to drive! We have 150 sophomores that have to get to six companies at 9 am on April 20, and back to RTHS at 12:45 pm. That means we need about 35 drivers! If you work in the Park, it is easy to do 8:45 am or 12:30 pm; you do not have to be a parent of a sophomore.
    2. Go through the company links above and talk with your student about what might be interesting about visiting that company. Make sure your student understands that visiting companies is their chance to discern more about what their future could hold; that Flex Days are a central part of the curriculum at RTHS; AND that this is their chance to create a story about the company they select and share it with students outside of the Triangle, with the Ameribilia app.
    3. Get your kiddo to sign up for a company they would like to visit.  Have them review the links above first.They can select their first, second and third choice from the list. Have them vote here for their choices.

December 18th Raptor Events

Winter Holiday Break

Have a great holiday break Raptors. See you in the new year!

College Counseling

RTHS is proud to announce that Leticia Tuset has been selected as a semi-finalist for the Morehead-Cain Scholarship at UNC-Chapel Hill. Leticia’s scholarship application clearly rose to the top as only 20% of applicants are selected as semi-finalists. Wish her luck as she continues through the selection process. Way to go, Leticia!

Mu Alpha Theta News

Mu Alpha Theta (MAT) will be meeting Jan 2, Jan 16, Jan 30, 2018, in room 230 during lunch.

November 6th Raptor Events

College Counseling

Choosing A College Major

I would like to share this great article from the NY Times about choosing a major in college.

Thanksgiving Donations


We know that for some in our Raptor Family, Thanksgiving is not a time of abundance and a dinner table heavily laden with a feast. We also know that there are many in our community who would willingly share their bounty. Germans celebrate their own type of Thanksgiving as farmers bring parts of their harvest and place them in a church to be distributed to those who might need it within the community. This “Erntedankfest” spurred the German Club to want to initiate a similar initiative within our community.

From Monday, we will place a large tub in the lobby for non-perishable food donations. Items include large canned pumpkin, pumpkin pie spice, evaporated milk, large cans of yams, canned green beans, canned mushroom soup, turkey seasoning, boxes or bags of stuffing, cans of cranberry sauce, Velveeta or similar product, elbow pasta, and turkey seasoning. We’ll accept fresh produce such as onions and celery as well as butter or margarine. You can also leave gift cards for Krogers, Walmart or Food Lion so that our Raptor family members can buy fresh items such as turkey, eggs, margarine or butter in this week.

We will place a shoe box at the front desk for gift card donations (with dollar amount on them) as well as for RTHS students and families to request a Thanksgiving dinner box anonymously.

We will distribute the Thanksgiving dinner with fixings on Monday and Tuesday of Thanksgiving week, most likely in backpacks.

Sponsored by The German Club as our form of “Erntedankfest.”

August 28th Raptor Events

2017 Eclipse

Research Triangle High School, a STEM school literally right in the middle of a STEM research park, decided it had to make some pretty serious plans for the biggest event of the year – the 2017 eclipse. “I wanted our students who might not have the chance to experience and learn about this bit of astronomy at home to be able to see it in a place where they could do it safely and get some instruction and context on it, here in school,” said Eric Grunden, Principal and Chief School Officer. So the school rearranged the day’s bell schedule so that the entire student body could head outside for the eclipse from 2 pm to 3 pm. Every period was shortened by a few minutes to slip that hour in the middle of the day, and the revised bell schedule was emailed to everyone the night before. Eclipse glasses had been ordered for every student and teacher weeks before, and four telescopes from staff and parent volunteers were set up outside.

At 2 pm everyone in the building trooped outside grabbed their glasses and started viewing the partial eclipse. “This is pretty cool because it’s the first Eclipse for my generation.,” said Kier Condon Grade 9. “This is one of those once in a life time moments you don’t want to miss.,” said Quarry Craig Grade 12. “This is an awesome opportunity, I’m so excited to be a part of this.,” said Noah Burnette Grade 11. “It was the best school day ever!” said Ms. Blizzard, Managing Director, perhaps woozy from the heat, but also thrilled with the school-wide engagement.  “Students were asking questions, taking photos through the telescopes, and talking about science in ways they hadn’t before and about things that we don’t even teach here. If I’d thought about it, I would have tried to get the ice cream food truck here,” said Mr. Grunden. Or as he summarized the day, “It was bitchin’!”

College Counseling

College Day!
On Thursday, August 31, seniors will have a special schedule to allow time for senior pictures and college application work. It should be a great day!

Please encourage your student to be prepared to work on college applications on Thursday. My goal is for all seniors to make significant progress on all aspects of the application process: essays, teacher recommendation requests, Naviance updates, and data entry into the applications.

Of course, on Thursday night, we will all gather in the Black Box Theater at 7 pm for our Senior College Night.

Looking forward to a productive day on the 31st! All seniors will participate in a post-high school planning workshop with Ms. Ringenbach and be bused to the Prestige Portrait Studio for their senior yearbook and cap & gown pictures. Please see this letter which has all the details for the day, including the price of the sitting fee and what you should plan to bring/wear on that Thursday.


Oktoberfest tickets will go on sale in room 58 on Monday for the Saturday, September 9th event sponsored by RTHS and the RTHS German Club! The event is RTHS-family friendly! Come and enjoy true entertainment Bavarian style provided by the Little German Band and Dancers! We’ll have freshly grilled bratwurst, chicken, and vegetables, a variety of German salads and delicacies. No beer, but plenty of soft drinks! In addition, German Club students will be creating flower crowns at various price levels, face painting, and balloon hats. There will also be games such as badminton, German bowling, and corn hole. Ticket prices are $5 door fee with one free ticket if you buy 5! (So 5 tickets for $20 — a great deal!). Rally your friends and family for a night of fun at RTHS’s first annual Oktoberfest on Saturday, September 9th from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Help our students make the Oktoberfest a success!  Many items still need to be donated or loaned.  Please go through the list and see if you can help! Sign-up here. We could really use canopies that are set up at sports events, beaches, etc. If you have one that you could loan the German Club for the day, we could be even more authentic than we’re planning! And that’s pretty authentic with the Little German Band and Dancers, bratwurst and root beer, German potato salad and a ton more! If you have a 10’x10′ or 10’x20′ canopy, please contact Dr. Overlock at ASAP.

German students will be learning how to bake German cakes before the Oktoberfest. Black forest cake, apple streusel, strudel, Gugelhupf and plum cakes! We’ll need to borrow mixers, measuring spoons, springform pans, Gugulhupf pans, and Bundt pans, as well as some ingredients. We’ll send home a list of ingredients for the big baking extravaganza which will take place on September 7 and 8. Please make sure all items are labeled! We’ll also need parental help on those two days! Come on over (even if your child is not a German student) and join the fun. (And learn how to make some fabulous recipes!)

May 15th Raptor Events

College Counseling News

I have an easy job (Shh! Don’t tell anyone I told you that!)

We all know that teachers at RTHS are the best teachers. For Pete’s sake, the Charter School Teacher of the Year is none other than our own, Deb Brown. It is because of the excellence of our teaching staff that I have such an easy job. It’s easy to talk about greatness. And it is fun, too. I love bragging about what happens in our classrooms. I can easily talk about the passion and commitment of our teachers. Without skipping a beat, I can tell you a story that demonstrates how each of our teachers makes a connection with our students. This is because our teachers are involved in every aspect of the development of our students. They help students explore passions (I can name at least five students who now want to study theater in college because of Ian Finley), improve their confidence, overcome obstacles, and motivate them to be their best selves. Teacher Appreciation Week is a great time to celebrate the efforts of our teachers.

Our students might not fully understand the role that teachers play in the college admissions process. And actually, sometimes teachers don’t understand how valuable they are either. When I was reading applications at UNC Chapel Hill, I came across a very high achieving student whose recommendation letter from a teacher was most confusing. By all measures, this was a top student, but her English teacher wrote only one sentence, “I recommend X Student.” Curious about why the teacher didn’t write more, I called the high school and left a message for the teacher to call me. The teacher promptly reached out and was shocked when I told her that I was calling because her extremely brief letter of recommendation raised red flags about the applicant. She said, “I only wrote a sentence because I thought you guys didn’t read those letters.” I explained the importance of her voice in the admissions process and she then praised the student and shared quick anecdotes about the student’s characteristics in her classroom. The conversation I had with the teacher cleared up our confusion and the student was offered admission.

Most colleges ask for two letters of recommendation from teachers as a part of a student’s application. The letters can help affirm what an admissions reader already assumes about the applicant. For example, if the applicant discloses a love for literature and the English teacher writing the recommendation letter talks about the student’s passion for Jane Austin, then the admission reader has reason to feel confident in the authenticity of the applicant. The letter can also provide new information about the applicant. Some students struggle to highlight all of their strengths and recommendation letters might reveal new talents or activities not otherwise discussed in the rest of the application. Finally, the letters add another voice to the application. While the student can control the tone of his application, the admissions readers bias might wrongly interpret the personality of the student simply evaluating the student’s own words. The letter of recommendation might clarify the overall message or personality of a student.

Our teachers at RTHS put a lot of time into writing for our students. As a result, their letters contain descriptive details about each student. The anecdotes shared by our teachers help admissions officers understand our students’ strengths and how our students will contribute to college classrooms. Our teachers write these letters because they care about our students and, like me, are eager to brag about our student’s accomplishments.

As we wind down Teacher Appreciation Week, I’m reminded that our teachers are the reason why I love my job so much (yeah, your kids are, too, but let’s hear it for the teachers!).

German Club News

  • Wednesday:   Cookie baking with the German Club after school. Do not need to be a German student to participate. Come and join the fun until 5:15.
  • Thursday:   The World Cup between German and Spanish students after school.
  • Friday:   Sommerfest, a special German lunch featuring bratwurst, hot dogs, chicken, and vegetables, cucumber salad, potato salad, and corn salad. Cost is $5.00 for one main entree and one side dish. Sodas are $1.00 and cookies are $1.00.
  • Thursday, May 25th, first interest meeting for a European trip in 2018 to London, Paris, Rome, Pisa, Florence, Lucerne and more! Room 58 at 4 p.m.

October 24th Raptor Events

College Counseling

Thank you for attending the college counseling program for juniors! If you couldn’t make it, please review the summary I’ve included below:

College Search Process

  • begin the college search process by visiting colleges in our area
  • schedule official tours at schools close to home; aim to visit at least three different schools
  • choose schools that are different from each other: large public, small private, school with unique majors/special programs
  • reflect on the criteria most important to you: location, size, choice of major, community, athletics, arts

College Admissions Process

  • some colleges use a formula for making admissions decisions (ex. a GPA of x plus a test score of x equals an admit)
  • some colleges use a holistic review process and consider factors such as rigor of the student’s curriculum, grades and grade trends, test scores, essays, extra curricular activities, letters of recommendation and demonstrated interest
  • research the schools on your list and learn about their specific review process; what factors are important to them

Next Steps

  • schedule an appointment with Mrs. R to review your transcript and talk about your college search
  • complete the college counseling paperwork in Naviance (instructions sent in a different email)
  • stay organized – create a physical folder at home for your college mail and an electronic folder for college email
  • ask Mrs. R for help!

Let me know if you have questions. Looking forward to working with you all as you continue the college search and application process. Stay tuned for info about Naviance.

Students can sign up for the meetings outside of Mrs. R’s office. Details posted in the Daily Digest! It is time to apply for financial aid.  All Seniors should complete a FAFSA form. Make an appointment with Mrs. R if you want assistance!

Mrs. R will be attending the annual College Board Conference in Chicago from October 26-28. She will not be at school, therefore, seniors need to see her on Monday and Tuesday.

NHS Peer Tutoring

Are your first quarter grades not quite where you’d like to see them? Is calculus proving to be even more difficult than you thought it would be?

The RTHS National Honor Society is offering peer tutoring every other week during seminar. Space is limited. Here’s how it works:

  1. Sign up here (please only sign up for 1 subject per day)
  2. Stop by room 205 between 7:30 & 9 am Friday before the week of tutoring, October 28, to get your seminar pass for Monday October 31 and/or Friday November 4
  3. On the day of your tutoring appointment, show your pass to your seminar teacher, head to Gallery 1, sign in, and get your study on.

Remember, these tutors are here to help you, not do your work for you. We value academic honesty!

Zombie Day Events

We will have our first ever Zombie Day on Friday, October 28th in anticipation for the evening activities.

For a mere $5.00, students can come before school and get made up with professional Zombie makeup and get a distressed Zombie threads. (Wear a tank top!)  We’ll send out a sign-up genius for exact times.  All proceeds will go to the Student Government Association.  For more information, contact,,

Students can wait until the evening festivities will start at 6:00 pm.  Come join the fun — food, beverages, fun and entertainment are all in the price for $5.00.  If you want to get “Zombie-fied” that night, then you will have to go into the Zombie Transformation Tent for an additional $5.00.

The Zombie Fest will include a Fashion Show, a Rap Battle, a Bake-Off, Haunted Dungeon, and dance.  We have added a new activity:  we will also offer a major Zombie battle in the music room with multiplayer PS4 and Xbox games.

October 3rd Raptor Events

SGA Social Events

  • October 20 — Zombie  Wars!  The battle between survivors and zombies is ON during the Food Truck Rodeo.  Get your food and join the fun!  We need parents to donate old t-shirts, preferably white and dark colors.  (Survivors will be white until they are tagged, then they will turn into dark t-shirted zombies).  Send in to Dr. Overlock in room 58. T-shirts will  not be returned, but donated.  Large sizes preferred.
  • October 28 — RTHS First Annual Zombie Ball, Fashion Show, Rap Battle, and Spooky Cook-off at RTHS.  We need parents to help grill hot dogs, donate hot dogs, bake and create spooky treats (please, no nuts!).  Contact for more information about what we need donated.  Price of tickets is $7.00, including food and drinks.
  • December 10 — RTHS will have a float in the Durham Holiday Parade!  Have a truck and a trailer?  We need it!
  • December 16 — RTHS First Annual Holiday Ball, semi-formal dance, Spruce Pine Lodge, 7-11 p.m. , for all grades.  Contact about what we need donated!
  • February 11 — RTHS First Annual Valentine’s Dance, Forest Hills Club House, 7-11 p.m., for all grades.
  • May 13 — RTHS Junior-Senior Prom!

College Counseling News

collegebOctober 2016


  • Junior College Counseling Night – RTHS
    October 17th 4pm or 5:45pm. Sign up to attend!
  • College Visits for the week of October 3:
    Elon University, George Mason University, and Virginia Commonwealth University

Students can sign up for the meetings outside of Mrs. R’s office. Details posted in the Daily Digest!

It is time to apply for financial aid. All Seniors should complete a FAFSA form. Make an appointment with Mrs. R if you want assistance!

arthurmillerRTHS Raptor Repertory

RTHS Raptor Repertory presents:
Arthur Miller’s

Thursday, 10/13 4:00pm (FREE Student Matinee – Blue Cast)
Thursday, 10/13 7:30pm (Red Cast)
Friday, 10/14 7:30pm (Blue Cast)
Saturday, 10/15 7:30pm (Red Cast)
Sunday, 10/16 2:00pm (Red Cast)
Sunday, 10/16 7:30pm (Blue Cast)

$7 general admission (free to children 12 and under)
All performances in the Black Box Theatre at RTHS

Reserve tickets here.

Reserve seats for the student matinee here.

August 29th Raptor Events

College Counseling

College Representatives will begin visiting RTHS in September. Mrs. Ringenbach will announce the visits each week and students will sign up in advance of the meeting. The following colleges will be visiting RTHS during the week of September 12, 2016:

College Representative Date Time
Marlboro College Casey Berg Mon September 12, 2016 9:00 AM
Hofstra University Courtney Cyr Mon September 12, 2016 3:00 PM
UNC special scholarship Warner Underwood Tue September 13, 2016 3:00 PM
Champlain College Julie Camintini Wed September 14, 2016 10:00 AM
California Institute of Technology Jann Lacosse Thu September 15, 2016 12:30 PM
Grinnell College Lila Hawkinson Fri September 16, 2016 9:00 AM

Robotics Team

terrorbytesbanner (2)

Meetings every Tuesday from 5 – 7 pm.

There’s a place on our team for everyone. Experience is not required; this is where experiences are made!

Our goal is to build a robot in six weeks. Each year we travel to multiple competitions and compete with other teams across the state, including the world championship last year.

To maintain our level of success and recognition, members of the TerrorBytes work to excel at: To maintain our level of competitiveness, members of the TerrorBytes work to excel at:
  • Video Production
  • Public Speaking
  • Media
  • Art
  • Web Design
  • Leadership
  • Writing
  • Finance
  • Mechanical Fabrication
  • Electrical Design
  • Programming
  • Mechanical Design

Young Republicans and Young Americans for Liberty Club

Are you interested in politics, and looking for a way to get involved? Do you identify with Republican, Libertarian, or Conservative ideals? Or are you just looking to expand your knowledge on differing political opinions? If any of these apply to you, join us Tuesdays at Lunch in Mr. Tyler’s Room (62) for the Young Republicans and Young Americans for Liberty club! We have discussions, debates, and chances to get involved in local politics. We welcome any and all new members to join us any time!

TerrorBytes at FIRST World Championship


RAWR! TerrorBytes

Thank you to everyone who supported the TerrorBytes!!!

They went to the FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) World Championship and ranked 23rd out of 75 teams in the toughest division in history!

There were 11 North Carolina teams competing in eight divisions of the championship. The TerrorBytes ranked at the top for NC. Go TerrorBytes!!!! It was exciting from start to finish!

They worked hard and played hard! There was just enough time to slip out to the City Museum in St.Louis for some unique “playground” fun.

Many of the seniors were able to buy their graduation cords there for FIRST Robotics. They will be proudly displayed as they cross the stage to receive their diplomas.

Please continue to support the TerrorBytes. They will be looking for committed team members once the seniors have left. FIRST provides scholarships to many major colleges and universities. FIRST is much more than robots! The skills gained in the process are lifelong!

Terrorbytes Going To Nationals

RTHS Terrobytes robotics banner

Our TerrorBytes Robotics (Team 4561) traveled to Campbell University, where they reached 2nd place of 32 teams during qualification. Additionally, the robotics team went on to participate in the Grand Final Match. During the closing ceremonies, the team won the FRC Industrial Design Award. With an amazing display under its belt, the team will move on to the State Competition at UNC Charlotte April 9-10. Here is a video of the team in action from this year’s competition. Additional videos of the robot can be found on the team YouTube Page.

RTHS Terrobytes logo