The Need for a Program Coordinator

Boothbay Region High School is a school that serves its students well. A staple of the city is high school. I believe that school should be a tool that students can use and benefit from. Most schools do this, provide a platform for students to grow into whole people and come away with the learning skills needed for the real world.

Today, employers are looking for specially trained people who can put their skills to good use. The world specializes; the value of people who exceed in a thing is growing. The cost of college education is also increasing. So if colleges produce more exceptional individuals in a field, high schools should help future generations of students find that skill that someone is passionate about and can also be applied to a career. Students must be able to pursue whatever interests they may have.

I am aware of the distinguished quality of education at Boothbay through our dedicated and engaging faculty as well as our competitive course offerings. However, students are still held back by state curriculum standards, scheduling issues, and a lack of students to fill classes.

Schools must strike a balance: developing well-rounded individuals who come out of high school with as many opportunities and skills as possible, while letting students pursue the interests they want. According to a study of 75 BRHS students, 43% of respondents wanted to take a course but couldn’t due to compulsory courses, and 66% wish they could take a wider variety of courses. Many students want to take certain courses that they might be interested in but cannot because they are held back by state standards.

It is vital for students who have not discovered what excites them to be able to pursue certain academic fields. Students have been taking the same classes since fifth grade: English, math, history and science. These are valuable areas of study important for schooling, but I think students are limited in finding what they love if they are forced to take these courses.

The state controls the school curriculum. I propose that a curriculum coordinator be incorporated into the school system to help advocate for students and their interests. When asked if a curriculum coordinator would help, chemistry teacher Lauren Graham said: “Yes, significantly.” She spoke of the need to have someone to assess both the standards of learning and the needs and wants of students and teachers. Program standards are controlled by the state. However, there is no doubt that a coordinator could work with the district to build a more responsive program.