Government class gets a new running mate

Next year, government will be shortened to one semester, while a semester of economics will be added as a course requirement


Jacob Orr

Government teacher Ben Knight teaches his students in class about the events going on in Ferguson, Missouri and other various topics. Knight is one of the government teachers who is excited for the new change taking place in senior schedules next year.

Jacob Orr, Staff Writer

For the class of 2016, a new change will be occurring in their senior schedules next year. The high school will no longer be requiring seniors take a full year of government. Instead, students will only have to take one semester of government, and one semester of economics.

The purpose of the change is to maintain the standards set by the Iowa Core, a program which sets academic expectations for schools and teachers across the state. These standards exist in all subjects including government, civics and economics. “To still satisfy the Iowa Core and instead of putting [the subjects] inside a government class, we decided to make an economics course required,” government teacher Ben Knight said.

The courses will be separate, as opposed to one year-long course. The teachers for economics will depend on their certifications, and are yet to be determined.  The order as to which course is first will be different for each student.

“If a current junior takes economics this year, we will determine whether or not they will need to take it again,” associative principal Jerry Stratton said. The school also plans to discontinue the Principles of Economy course if the change is permanent.

“I think it’s a positive change,” Knight said. “I think it gives us the opportunity to really decide what about government we want to teach and help narrow [the course] a little bit.”

Junior Isaac Tegeler is a member of the first class to experience the change. “It’s a good idea, a more variety of material can be covered helping get a better feel for what career paths are out there,” Tegeler said.

Overall, the new change has been receiving positive feedback as of right now.

“What I want to see, as a government teacher to an administrator, is kids leaving government class understanding [government], and being active citizens as they turn 18.” Stratton said.