A meeting this week facilitated by Pat Blanc, assistant superintendent of Cirriculum and Instruction, at Jefferson High School was the first step in opening communication with parents regarding the forward movement of Advanced Placement classes.
The meeting, which came about because of parental concerns of this year's failed online AP courses, allowed staffers to hear suggestions as well as frustrations.
The look ahead will hopefully be made while looking behind as well as the AP online classes students took this year which provided little to no instruction or feedback in many cases. The students essentially taught themselves or simply rolled through homework with no "teaching" provided. Many parents, this editor included, are frustrated with the fact that our children enrolled in AP classes to gain college credit by completing the AP exams and yet now, our students are unprepared to pass those exams.
While school staffers and board administrators heard the cry and have promised diligence moving forward, the students of this school year are left as "guinea pigs" with the choice to "take the exam or not" with little or no preparation.
These adminsitrators are encouraged to take seriously suggestions made by parents, whether it be to give back lost planning periods that led to a partial loss of certified AP teachers; to have teachers cross-teach between the high schools; or at minimum to have someone that oversees the online program so that when the problems arise, there is oversight. It appears at least for this year, no one was watching and no one was listening to students and parents until it became an issue at a Board of Education meeting.
Our Jefferson administration needs to listen in the future before it has to become a board issue.