At the Tuesday night meeting of the School Board, members of the board were informed of recent developments in dual enrollment and AP college credit courses at the high school.
If students do well in selective high school courses, they may have the opportunity to earn credit towards their college courses. Although these college courses are a help, they may not necessarily help towards graduation, but rather help in placement of the student and getting into an advanced course right away.
Another area that needs to be kept an eye on is the student’s major. There may be some colleges that award you credit, but will not award you credit towards your major. The Southern New Hampshire University courses are a bit more of a direct transfer for those students who wish to attend SNHU while earning college credit whilst still in high school.
The possibility of middle school students earning high school credit was also discussed. The courses would simply appear on a student’s transcript as “Pass” or “Fail” and would not affect a student’s overall GPA. This opens up doors for students who wish to take more advanced courses before they even begin their high school career. The reason for having the pass/fail courses on a student’s transcript is to be able to take advanced courses in middle school and get to an advanced class faster in high school according to Assistant Superintendent Dan Black. It can also work as a signal to show that the student did indeed take an advanced courses (or courses) while they were in middle school. Although a student may get an A in the advanced course, it will only show up on their transcript as “Pass”. This can lead to a slippery slope, because the middle school and high school may see grades differently and may not translate well. By middle school standards, an A might be actually an A- on the high school level. This explanation then lead to a discussion on rigor and whether or not the rigor at the high school is greater. Black said that this is not an issue of rigor, but rather for a student to earn credit, the competencies and the assessments need to be the same at both levels.
Also presented to the School Board was the 2018-19 school calendar. The first day of school is scheduled for the 27 of August, the Monday before Labor Day with no school on that Friday. The 6 of November is scheduled for a teacher’s workshop. The final day of school in 2019 is slated for Thursday, June 13, but there is wiggle room allowed in case of snow days or weather related cancellations. The calendar has designated ten days of extra days to prepare for the inevitable weather in the winter and early spring months (the final day of school could potentially be Thursday, June 27 of 2019). The only stipulations made by the School Board were the continuing inquiry of why there is no school on the day before Thanksgiving and why there are days off for parent/teacher conferences. Although these issues were discussed amongst the members of the School Board, the motion was still made to accept the 2018-19 school calendar by a vote of 5-0.