16 Feb

From Joe Algrant, US Principal

Dear Parents,

The winter is flying by, and lots goes on in school that is worthy of taking time to bring to your attention. Today I thought to write about the next major academic project that is coming up, which believe it or not is the selection of classes for next year. This is an involved process that has already begun and that will last until the middle of April. It takes a long time because there are several pieces to the process, and we sequence them in a logical order that aims to help students make well-considered choices. Because there are many options from which to choose, in the “rising” Grades 11 and 12 especially, this process requires time, attention, and self-reflection of students, and proper consultation with others at home and in school.

We will ask students first to reflect on this year as a way to initiate thinking about next year. We will take them through reflections on their courses, including volume of work, stress levels, and their thinking about next year. We will then go over the options carefully in grade level meetings.  At about the same time they will receive their academic comments from this semester, giving them important feedback about their current progress as they plan for the future. Then they will receive the faculty’s recommendations for courses in different departments, be they recommendations about honors or AP, or other directions. In a couple of situations, we have already asked students to apply for honors or AP courses before we begin the formal scheduling process. Those requests are considered carefully, alongside the departmental information, and before spring break we will produce a set of recommendations for each student.

We also will have a meeting for parents to hear from the deans about the course options and general curriculum design for the following year. Those meetings are scheduled for Monday, March 12, at 7:00 PM. The process will then include conversations between students and advisors and teachers and deans and department chairs.

Everyone goes away for spring break to think about the options, and when we return in April students will continue to meet with their advisors and come to conclusion about the best choices. The final step will be to enter them into our electronic registration program. Once all is entered, we spend the weeks until the end of the year making corrections and any alterations that are made. Final schedules are then released to students on or about August 10.

The College Counseling Office (CCO) reminds our Grades 10 and 11 families of the Colleges Tours Trip that they are offering on Friday, March 9.  The deadline for students to sign-up has now been extended to next Thursday, February 22. Click here for additional details or Email cco@d-e.org if you have any questions.

Lastly, thank you to our Chinese and Korean PA Affinity Group for hosting the delicious Lunar New Year Luncheon, and to those students from the Asian Students Affinity Group who performed during the Lunar New Year Assembly earlier today. Below are some snapshots of the assembly – and click here to view a quick video segment of the Lion Dance — hope you’ll enjoy.