"Not just to run a campus this size, but also run a campus this size with the expectations that we have," Ryan Silva, the CCHS principal, said.
says the large student body allows Cherry Creek
to offer opportunities other schools can't afford or simply don't have enough students to fill.
"In every department, they have course offerings that would rival a small college," Silva
is the only school in the state that can offer a college-level mathematics class such as Linear Algebra along with 27 other advanced placement courses.
The school can also offer a wider range of electives and alternative physical education classes which focus on things such as trust and teamwork.
"If kids want to take it, usually they're going to find it here," Silva
"There's not too many kids who can exhaust our curriculum."
Gardner says he
notices the difference.
Despite outside perceptions, Silva
says, Cherry Creek
has a wide range of students from low to high socio-economic status.
says there are various races and religions represented.
"I'm proud that we have 32 different languages that are spoken at Cherry Creek High School
"If you miss a certain window when to drive into school, then you might end up being 15 minutes late instead of five minutes early for a class," Silva
says perhaps the biggest logistical challenge is scheduling.
With so many courses and so many students, forming the master schedule is a full-time endeavor, he
says, to prepare for the next year.
"We start that process in October and we really don't end that until June or July," Silva
During the lunch period, many students go off campus to eat, but Cherry Creek
still needs to maintain two cafeterias, one run by the district, the other by the students.
"I've been here four years, so I know when to get my food, when not to get my food, when there are lines, when there aren't lines," Gardner said.
says the size of Cherry Creek
is an advantage for students.
believes it can prepare them for anything, especially college.
"Really, what we try to do here is mirror ourselves after colleges in everything we do," Silva
"We're unique," Silva
"We're not like a lot of big schools."
Gardner says it does get hectic at times, but he
wouldn't trade his
experience for anything else.