New classes proposed for Shenandoah schools

The Shenandoah County Public Schools School Board approved a revised 2016-2017 course offerings guide for students at its Jan. 14 board meeting.

David Hinegardner, director of middle and secondary education for Shenandoah County Public Schools, said students are the focus when determining which classes should be made available

“We aspire to offer classes that extend opportunity for our students well into the future, so we are always looking at what they will need in their future and what we can do to help prepare them,” he said.

New classes proposed to the board include cybersecurity, marching band, human body systems, medical interventions, biomedical innovation, biomedical internship/research, engineering explorations I, engineering analysis and application II, geospatial technology dual enrollment, military science III, military science IV, and calculus dual enrollment.

“Some of these classes are dependent upon funding in the budget for them, such as the medical classes,” he said, “However, other classes, such as cybersecurity, band, engineering and calculus are simply part of our existing staff teaching schedule. Still, other classes like the military science classes are offered through a partnership with Massanutten Military Academy.”

He said that every year a discussion is had on what courses students want to take and what courses they do not. Classes that students no longer show interest in are replaced with alternatives that students have expressed interest in.

But student interest isn’t the only deciding factor in what is added or removed from the course offerings guide.

“Lots of other factors may go into what is offered as well, such as teacher license or endorsement areas, availability of materials and resources, and teacher’s specific area of expertise,” he added.

Another new addition to the course offerings guide is a career clusters and academic career plans page.

Hinegardner said this page was added to help students and parents see the links between courses they may want to take and a potential career path they may pursue in the future.

Contact staff writer Kaley Toy at 540-465-5137 ext. 176, or ktoy@nvdaily.com