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New English Course Offered to Juniors

In previous years, juniors at NHS were only able to take either general education (gen-ed) English III or Advanced Placement (AP) Language and Composition as their prerequisite English course for 11th grade. This made many incoming juniors, when choosing their courses, question whether they would be capable of taking an AP-leveled course or if they should just take a gen-ed class. After years of input from students, parents, teachers, and administrators, the English Language Arts (ELA) Department came up with the idea of adding an English III Honors course into the ELA curriculum for students who don’t want to take either AP or gen-ed. It will ultimately serve as a middle ground between English III and AP Language. 


In addition, there is already an English I Honors for freshmen and English II Honors for sophomores. “We were lacking options for our junior and senior level English courses,” said ELA Coordinator Michael Gurrieri. This course will now allow incoming juniors when selecting their classes for junior year the option to decide where they feel more comfortable in – a gen-ed English class, an honors English class, or an AP-leveled English class. 


“I am glad there is an English III Honors course because I feel like it would be a good class for me to take in between gen-ed English and AP, as well as to prepare me to take AP English my senior year,” said sophomore Kattie Guerrero who’s planning to take the new course next year. This course is designed to prepare students for taking either AP Language or AP Literature their senior year, like Guerrero. Additionally, the course will expose students to the different kinds of skills and concepts in both AP Language and AP Literature, hence the title of the course, English III Honors: Advanced Language and Literature. It would hopefully provide students in the course the necessary foundations to enroll in either AP Language or AP Literature the following year. 


As a result of the implementation of the course, the two AP courses will no longer be tied to a specific grade. Juniors and seniors will be able to take either AP Language or AP Literature either year. “This will hopefully increase AP enrollment in our two AP courses since there is so much more flexibility,” said Guerrieri. 


The new course will be comprised of material not found in a gen-ed English class. “It will hopefully remind students that the course is designed to be an on-ramp to either AP Lang or AP Lit their senior year,” said Gurrieri. “It will not just be an accelerated version of the regular English III curriculum; it's an entirely new course. We will be writing the curriculum this summer and we're very excited to launch it next year!”