OCSI Connections:

Transitions are part of our lives, and they range in size. We transition from home to school. We transition from the school to spring vacation. We transition elementary to middle school. And upon graduation, we transition to college and career.

What are some big transitions you’ve experienced? Big transitions I’ve experienced include moving from Japan to the US in 1973, going off to college in 1981, and moving from the US to Japan in 1987. And as I look back on my transitions, I found that “[l]eaving right is a key to entering right.”


You might be wondering, “What can help me or my student leave right?” One thing I’ve found that helps is the RAFT model. Here’s a quick summary:

  • Reconciliation: With whom do you need to reconcile?
  • Affirmation: To whom do you want to say thank you?
  • Farewell: To what people, places, and possessions do you want to say good-bye?
  • Think destination: How does your destination compare to your current situation?
We use the RAFT model with our seniors to help them transition to college and career. Here are some examples of how we do this:
College Career Resources

Another thing I’ve found that helps people leave right is doing personal reflection. Here are some questions that are designed to help you do some initial reflection:
  • What words come to mind when you think of “transition”?
  • What excites/concerns you about transition?
  • What do you think of the following statement? “Leaving right is a key to entering right.
  • What helps/hinders healthy transition?
  • How helpful is the RAFT model?
Remember, transitions are part of life, and “[l]eaving right is a key to entering right.” (If you found this helpful, you might like to read The Global Nomad’s Guide to University Transition.)

Michael B. Essenburg, head of school
Equipping students to walk with God and impact the world for Him
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P.S. Want to use the RAFT model to do some further reflection? Try the list of questions below!