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Wednesday, February 24th, 2010

Class schedules discussed at open house

Celina High School

By William Kincaid

Celina High School guidance counselor Wendy Gabes meets with two parents on Tues. . .

Parents of Celina High School students on Tuesday evening had one last chance to meet with guidance counselors and ask questions about a new class schedule that will change how their children learn next year.
Today, all high school students will register for a new five-period, trimester schedule set to replace the traditional nine-period, quarter system used for the last 10 years.
Several parents attended the open house registration at the high school's media center.
"I think the parents are just conscientious," high school guidance counselor Wendy Gabes said, explaining that they want to make sure their children meet all of the school's requirements.
Gabes said many students are excited about new course offerings afforded by the new schedule - so many in fact, some teenagers are disappointed they can't take them all.
Though Gabes said she hasn't heard too much concern about the longer class periods, there is always fear involved with change.
"We've met with students to go over the schedules," she said, pointing out there were several times, including lunch time visits with counselors, for students and parents to learn about the new trimester.
All high school students, scheduled to register at different times depending on their last name, will meet with all of their teachers in the high school gymnasium today before sitting down with either a counselor or administrator, Gabes said.
They must bring their registration packets, including a copy of their transcript and a course request sheet signed by a parent or guardian.
Students will select 15 courses - five classes for each of the three trimesters - and three alternative classes.
"I'm just crossing my fingers," Gabes said about registration.
Though the registration method is not new, the manner in which next year's schedules are processed will be.
"I know it will (work out), I just don't know how long it will take," Gabes said.
The trimester schedule was presented as an alternative to the current schedule where students are often subjected to a heavy course load. Also too much time is being wasted out of class, according to high school Principal Jason Luebke.
With less time spent outside of the classroom, students will be able to enroll in classes that otherwise would not be available.
But whatever core subject or elective classes students choose, they will stay in each of their classes next year for 65 minutes - 23 minutes more than this year's periods.
The longer classes are intended to allow teachers to instruct more in depth.
Luebke said teaching for retention and teaching fewer concepts to a deeper level is the aim of the trimester. Success is likely dependent on each teacher sustaining the attention of their students by varying instruction.
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