A controversial plan to eliminate some honors and advanced courses at Patrick Henry High is on hiatus Wednesday. This comes after the students staged a protest at the school.
A few weeks ago, pupils learned that the school was scrapping some advanced and specialist classes – a total of eight classes, including advanced English, history and biology.
Advanced and Specialized classes are weighted, which means they are graded on a 5.0 scale and can increase students’ grade point averages.
Advanced Placement (AP) classes, which are also weighted and can earn students college credit, have not been eliminated.
The principal emailed parents saying the lesson adjustments will create more balanced heterogeneous clustered classes, eliminate the stigma of unweighted lessons, and provide a well-rounded lesson offering for all students.
But on Wednesday afternoon, the school announced it was suspending changes for the time being.
“After hearing from students today and parents who had questions, the school is suspending course changes to continue the discussion on how best to allow each student to reach their full academic potential,” said a district spokesperson at NBC 7.
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Michelle Irwin, the school’s principal, said she wants to make the changes a collaborative effort.
“Well, you know here at Henry, we take great pride in all the work we do to support our students and to align our goals with those of our district by expanding student access to rigorous coursework,” said Irwin. “We also recognize that we have students and parents who are concerned about the direction we’re going, so we’re going to take a little break and get more input from parents as well as students because we want to make this a collaboration. effort.”
“I’m really happy about it,” one student told NBC 7. “The reason we held the protest and why we had mostly student speakers is because we wanted student voices to be heard. .”
“We are really delighted that she [the principal] takes action. We still have more decisive things to burn, obviously they can’t do that in a day,” another student told NBC 7.
The students hope to get more details soon as they have already chosen the courses for next year. The principal said they would iron out those details in the coming days.
Parents told NBC 7 they were also upset by an email the principal recently sent announcing a change in the graduation ceremony saying that students who graduate with a GPA over 4.0 will no longer be allowed to wear a special white dress during the ceremony. .