The School Mascot and House System
In February 2002, Santa Cruz International School launched its House System. Students, teachers and administrative staff are divided into four houses; Centaurs, Pegasus, Titans and Unicorns. Students and teachers remain in their respective houses during their stay at the school.
Two years later, in 2004, the student body chose the Griffin as the school mascot. This mythical creature, with the body of a lion and the head and wings of an eagle, is known for its courage, nobility, and wisdom and inspires our students to excel in all of their endeavours.
The house system, originated in Great Britain and was widely used in British schools and schools that model themselves after the British system in countries that used to be colonies of the Empire, among them South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, India and Pakistan.
There are numerous benefits schools have traditionally seen in using the house system. This traditional system allows SCIS to promote the concepts of competition and camaraderie, a combination that works very well for the Griffin family. It is designed to encourage and increase competition between students and to create a supportive environment.
Throughout the year, the four houses, Centaurs, Pegasus, Titans and Unicorns compete with each other for points for the House Cup at the end of the school year.
The advantages of the house system have been manifold. The houses provide an increased feeling of identity and belonging, and students develop a sense of tradition and get to take advantage of.
We notice a definite change in the attitude of students as a result of the establishment of the houses. Because of the competition and the identification of each student with a house, there is constant encouragement for students to do their best. As a matter of fact, the positive attitudes of students toward one another and toward the school is a characteristics of the Griffins and Santa Cruz International School.
The sense of tradition is palpable too. Although it is still relatively young, the SCIS house system already has about it the feeling of history. Students are aware that they are actively writing the history of our school. Each year, new house captains are selected from the students body and they are excited about their positions and carrying the banner forward for their houses. In a modern, digital society, students do not have many opportunities to be part of traditions like these.
Another important benefit is the leadership opportunities it generates for students. Each house has eight captains who, under teacher guidance, are entirely in charge of organizing student participation in special events like Sports Day, Spirit Day, Cultural Week, and so on.
At SCIS, house points are awarded based in the following categories: academics, sport, and spirit. The house system exists to provide a healthy level of competition and camaraderie among students. We also teach our students, that while we compete with each other, we always remain united and loyal as Griffins.
Meet Our Four Houses
House teachers: Sandra Carrazos, Jimena Pereda, Elvia Muñoz, Jonathan Paz, Diego Terrazas, Yali Pinto, Amanda du Plessis, Janeth Campos, Camila Traverso, Romina Severiche, Cimar Lizarazzu, Vicki Gamberoni
House teachers: Leyla Mendez, Ingrith Poma, Natalia Parejas, Ben Powell, Jacky Pérez, John Kenny, Rhiannon Mudford, Leticia Ortega, Andres Vivado, Maria Herrera, Paola Duran, Claudia Pantoja
House teachers: Rosario Antezana, Pamela Herrera, Marynes Roca, Lynn Paz, Priscila Burgoa, Sandra Reznicek, Aneshka Duran, David Parejas, Silvia Aguirre, Shery Hsie, Gail Arce, Daniel Ribera
House teachers: Mariana Ichaso, Susana Rojas, Mariella del Rio, Sasha Vasquez, Jimena Mercado, Claudia Traverso, Claudia Moreno, Danae Gutierrez, Christina Devine, Laura Zelaya, Never Castro, Hassan Khashashneh