Our annual inspection, now called JROTC Program Accreditation, left us filled with pride from our boys, a little soggy thanks to the weather and slightly frustrated with the new inspection process.
"Jake (Whitting, battalion commander,) did an amazing job getting the corps prepared and the boys answered the bell," explained St. John's President E. Andrew England. "They performed to the extremely high standards they set for themselves."
The disappointment came not in anyway from the cadets, but from the realization that this would be the first year we would not get a score from JROTC Brigade. Brigade will now only offer a score every three years. The old system of the 1000-point score has been replaced by a percentage.
The inspector explained that this year's was a courtesy visit but, had they been scored, our boys would have retained their Gold Star. The Gold Star is earned for what is formerly the Honor Unit with Distinction and now the JROTC Program of Excellence- which requires a 995 by old standards or a 95 percent by new standards to achieve.
Based on our own internal review, St. John's would have received a 97.25 percent (997 by old standards).
"We went into this not really knowing what to expect," said SFC Geronimo Rivera, JROTC Instructor. "They did excellent on the briefing, excellent on the cadet folders. I am proud of them."
While the weather and Brigade may have let us down, our cadets did not. President England will be penning a letter to JROTC later in the week to encourage changes to this process. Please congratulate your cadet on a great job.