The Sonoma Valley Unified School District board will get a report Tuesday on the 11th and 12th grade English class offerings at Sonoma Valley High.
A brouhaha erupted back in January when it was announced that Honors English would no longer be offered to juniors and seniors.
The district has been offering college prep English, Honors English and Advanced Placement (AP) English to juniors and seniors. Freshmen and sophomores have college prep and Honors English to choose from.
At the time, SVHS Principal Kathleen Hawing outlined the rationale behind eliminating the courses, pointing out that AP English is open to juniors and seniors and, she added, that schools typically drop honors courses when AP classes are added.
According to Hawing, neither the Napa school district nor any other Sonoma County public high schools offer all three levels – regular, or “college prep”; honors; and AP – at the junior and senior levels.
Since the recommendation was first announced, there have been meetings with parents and meetings with students.
But as of Monday, everything is still up in the air. No firm decisions have been reached.
Karen Strong, the district’s associate superintendent, instructional services, said the English department will be meeting and will make a recommendation in three weeks on future offerings.
“We’ll share that with the board at its March 13 meeting,” Strong said.
Since every student in the high school takes English, Strong said, “There will still be the same number of sections.”
Strong said the number of students taking AP English has basically flat-lined since the 2013-14 school year. “We have a low of 100 and a high of 101,” she said.
But that’s the number of students who enrolled in AP English at the beginning of the year. The number of students who ended up staying in AP English is lower, ranging from 56 in 2014-15 to a high of 88 this school year.
“This gives the teachers a time to weigh in,” she added. “We have some work to do.”
Strong will give the report to the board. It’s an informational item so there will be no vote by the board.
The board will also get a budget update from Bruce Abbott, the district’s associate superintendent of business services.
Abbott will talk about revenue projections, give a budget timeline and have a response from the Sonoma County Office of Education on the school district’s first interim report.
In his revenue projection, Abbott is planning for a 4 percent yearly growth in property taxes even though the average yearly growth since 2011-12 was 5.2 percent. The decrease in growth is based on initial estimates because of the expected fire losses.
There will also be an update on the search for a new superintendent.
The meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. at the Community Meeting Room, 177 first St. W., Sonoma.
Email Bill at email@example.com.
English department to make recommendation in three weeks.