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Unique Program & Traditions

Govie Gala

Each year RVGS holds a dance we call The Govie Gala on the Tuesday evening prior to Thanksgiving. Students vote on a fun theme and then decorate and dress up accordingly. We have celebrated themes ranging from "Superheroes" to "Zombie Apocalypse." Everyone brings 5 canned food items to donate to a food bank as their ticket to admission. DJ Kenny plays all the hits and students dance in groups with their friends until the lights come on at 10:00pm. Students always tell us how the Govie Gala is one of the most enjoyable events each year and it allows us to give back to our local community.


In 2012 RVGS started hosting a spring Prom for students. Students select the theme and are in charge of decorations. So far we have celebrated "Festival of Lights" and "Greek Paradise." This is a slightly more formal dance than Govie Gala, but not as formal as a typical prom. Parents donate food and drinks for the evening for students and faculty. Students donate 5 canned food items to "Feeding America" as their ticket to admission. All students are encouraged to donate even if they cannot attend prom and as always, our students and parents really come through! DJ Kenny again plays the music and students vote on King and Queen. The Prom has quickly become an RVGS tradition and gives stu-dents a chance to connect at the end of the year and cele-brate the uniqueness of RVGS and the successful comple-tion of another school year.

RVGS Talent Show

In 2013 RVGS held the first ever RVGS Talent Show. We've always known how smart our students are, but we wanted to give them an opportunity to showcase their many other talents. The talent show was completely student run with students acting as the emcees, videographer, sound tech, props and technical support and performers. There were 11 student acts including singing, piano and guitar playing, beat boxing and musical theatre. The talent show acted as a fundraiser for senior prom and the auditorium was full to capacity! The feedback was phenomenal and we were immediately asked to make the talent show a yearly event at RVGS.

RVGS AP Environmental Science Canoe Trip

Each year students enrolled in the AP Environmental Sci-ence classes embark upon a field experience in collaboration with the Chesapeake Bay Foundation. Our students have the benefit of living in an area with a wealth of natural beauty nearby. The students spend the day paddling the Upper James River, part of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed, from Buchanan to Arcadia. As they immerse themselves in the peaceful, serene landscape they learn about the variety of pollution sources that are threatening the James River and the Chesapeake Bay. They have the opportunity to run some rapids, perform water quality tests and collect representative macroinvertebrates. In partnering with the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, the students receive expert instruction from specialists in outdoor education and the environment.

Project Forum

All of the hard-work students put into their research projects during the January intersession culminates in our annual, school-wide science fair: Project Forum. On a cold winter Saturday, RVGS students present their project display boards describing their independent research. Project Forum is an all-day event, with project judging in the morning, open house in the afternoon, and an awards ceremony at the end of the day. Project Forum is the major event of the school year and is possible because of the commitment and dedication of RVGS students, teachers, parents, mentors, and community volunteers.


Both in traditional classes and in research electives, collaboration with community experts gives RVGS students the opportunity to explore ideas in depth and learn about careers in math and science. For example, students in the Bio-technology and Bioinformatics elective have the opportunity to begin their research projects over the summer at the basic research labs at Jefferson College and Carilion Clinics. There, students have access to advanced equipment and the opportunity to collaborate with doctors and scientists on multi-year research projects.

Senior Dinner

Each year RVGS celebrates the accomplishments of our senior class at our Senior Dinner which is most frequently held at Hotel Roanoke. Students, Parents, Faculty, Superintendents and School Board Members enjoy a gourmet meal while watching a slide show of the seniors. Students are selected to speak about their journey through RVGS and then the awards are presented by faculty members. Special Awards and honors are given to a select few students and each RVGS student receives a certificate of completion and a graduation pin. Senior Dinner ends each year with a special "Faculty Roast" given by a group of students. Senior Dinner is a unique and special event for all in attendance.

Silent Auction at Project Forum

The RVGS Foundation Board of Directors and parents put on each year a Silent Auction. The auction takes place during the Student Project Forum on a Saturday in early February. A hard working group of parent volunteers arrange for the donation of services, merchandise, and gift certificates from local businesses, as well as, setup and run the auction. The items are displayed for several hours of bidding during Student Project Forum open house. Funds raised from the auction are used to purchase equipment for the school and provide cash awards for student winners at the Project Forum. The auction together with the Project Forum is the major yearly event that brings together all members of the RVGS community.