To Be Or Not To Be: Honors Classes
When students fill out their schedules for the upcoming school year, they are generally faced with two options: honors classes or regular classes.
Honors classes are accelerated and give students a deeper understanding of the material when compared to regular classes (not to mention, eye candy for colleges to see on a transcript). It would be expected for students to take advantage of this. However, many do not. Often students choose the easier option.
Perhaps many students have never been pushed to their full potential as far as the courses they take. MHS Junior Kevyn Manson said, “I don't think I am smart enough. I don't want to take a class I know I'll fail. I think it would be too much of a challenge.”
Manson added, “I could do an honors class if I wanted to, but I just don't really believe in myself enough… if they [teachers and guidance counselors] ever did push me, I’d probably try it and see if I could do it.”
Manson said that he has not been pushed by teachers and guidance counselors to try honors classes even once in his high school career.
Junior Holly Konwinski agrees with Manson,“I have never been challenged to take honors classes.” She feels as if she has never been pushed out of her comfort zone.
MHS Guidance Counselor Susan Piper said, “I absolutely challenge students to take honors classes. However, I do this based on their strengths. If a student is doing poorly in math, I probably will not move them to an honors class.” Piper added, “ If their goals are geared toward a certain subject or if they are excelling in a certain area, I definitely will encourage them to challenge themselves in those areas of strength and interest.”
Piper believes that a large part of whether or not students choose honors classes is their confidence. She thinks that one of the main things students need is encouragement. “They need to be told “yes you can” when they don’t believe it for themselves,” she said.