New courses follow old trend

Posted on January 15, 2009 by

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Tyler Knudson- J-lab 140 Online Editor

Ever since grades became weighted at CHS, the school board has seen a steady increase in proposals for new honors courses. What most people don’t know is that this is more than just a coincidence.
This year, elective classes made CHS history by finally transitioning into the honors program, but with the addition of these classes, (e.g. honors band), several questions have arisen. The main concern is that some of these courses might be “easier” compared to other courses, both inside and outside of the honors program. For instance, honors pre-calculus might be much harder for someone when compared to one of their elective honors courses, yet they get an extra .25 grade bonus in both the course that they felt was easy and the one that they struggled to pass. Renee Cocanower (assistant principal) has taken the steps necessary to make sure that this is not the case.  Cocanower, as well as the rest of the office staff and school board, has made sure that new honors courses are significantly more demanding than their non-honors counterparts.

Mitchel Claxton (9) and Dylan DeArmond (10) browse the course fair.

Mitchel Claxton (9) and Dylan DeArmond (10) browse the course fair.

“I definitely believe honors classes should be far more challenging than a regular class to warrant the extra GPA boost,” Martha Shoff (science) said, who has confirmed that she will teach honors Earth/space science next year.
Cocanower doesn’t think that these new honors classes will exploit any flaws in the new system of weighted grades. She believes that all courses, electives included, should be allowed to have an honors class.
“Since people are smart in different areas, all areas should have an opportunity to have weighted grades,” Cocanower said.
This appears to be the reasoning behind the variety of new honors classes available to students next year. Five out of six new courses planned for next year will be honors, including honors computer applications, honors nutrition and foods I & II, honors Earth/space science, and honors housing and interior design foundations. The only new course that will not be an honors course is the newly confirmed geography and history of the world class.

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