What Will Honors Classes Look Like in the 2017-2018 School Year?

Many students and teachers are aware of the new change in policy regarding Honors classes. In the upcoming school year, Lenape students will have the opportunity to take whatever level class they would like to, regardless of prerequisites or the previous stipulation that a prospective Honors student must receive a yearly grade of an A or a B in an Honors class or an A in an Accelerated class to qualify for Honors the next year.

I had the opportunity to sit down with Principal Cattani to discuss this new policy and what it really means for classes next year.

Q: How did this new policy come about?

A: It was district mandated. Here at Lenape we want to give students more opportunity to fluctuate between levels–whether that be from CP to ACC, or ACC to Honors. Students looking to take an academic risk in taking a higher level course will meet with their counselor to review their grades, testing scores, and teacher recommendations to be sure they are making the appropriate academic decision.

Q: Ideally, what would you like to see come about from this new policy? What do you expect to see in terms of class size for Honors classes next year?

A: I’d like to see more students challenging themselves and including more rigor into their schedules. As for class size, the numbers may not increase as much as people expect them to. I’d say anywhere between a 5% and 10% increase (from ACC to HON) would be considered a success.

Q: Is there any plan in place for these new Honors students to ensure their success?

A: Based on student schedules, there is tutoring available through teachers, our student NHS tutors as well as the after school Tutoring Center. These students adjusting to Honors level coursework should meet about once a week with their teachers to check in and make sure they’re keeping up with their workload.

Q: Do you see any drawbacks to this policy?

A: I don’t. It is my hope that students will take this opportunity to take academic risks and rise to the occasion and embrace their potential. I do not think the overall rigor of Honors courses will suffer at all. Teachers will keep teaching in the same way, only now, more┬ástudents will have the chance to learn at a level that may have been previously unattainable.