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School District News
updated: Feb 03, 2010, 5:43 PM

Source: SB Schools

Santa Barbara Secondary School District's GATE courses and the district's board focus goal to increase the participation of underrepresented students in GATE courses

A message from Superintendent Brian Sarvis

At last night's board meeting, board members considered making changes to the Gifted and Talented Education (GATE) course label following a report on the district's GATE courses. GATE courses provide specialized learning experiences beyond the regular curriculum for students who demonstrate high performance or capacity for high performance beyond age and grade expectations.

One out of every three students currently in our junior high and high school GATE courses have not previously been identified as a GATE student. The district has studied their performance. They do well in these courses on test measures and grades.

The board has set a goal to significantly increase the participation of underrepresented students in GATE courses. The district has not been able to make progress on this goal. We expect that the changes proposed at last night's board meeting will affect our success in meeting this goal.

The label "GATE" may be an artificial barrier to our underrepresented students. Courses labeled "GATE" actually serve GATE and other advanced learners. Underrepresented students often see courses labeled "GATE" as unavailable to them.

Other districts made the change in course labeling years ago and simply call these advanced courses "Honors." In doing so they have increased access for a greater number of students seeking more rigorous courses. It is now the norm across the state to label advanced courses as "Honors."

As part of the proposed change in the course title, guidelines for placement in Honors courses were presented to ensure that students can be successful and the high level of instruction is maintained in these rigorous courses. The learning environment is enriched when differing voices, experiences, and dialogue are part of the educational experience.

During the month of February the district will meet with students, staff, and parents to discuss the proposed changes.

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News from San Marcos High's Health Careers Academy
Congratulations to the nursing students in San Marcos High School ‘s Health Careers Academy for passing their state Certified Nursing Assistant exam. Marcene Newman, director of the Health Careers Academy, said, "Sonia Botello, Veronica Dominguez, Maria Duarte, Leanne Fretz, Veronica Juarez, Nathalie Nateras, Michelle Orozco, Eryn Parks, Nicole Quirke, Jane Reding, Carley Russell, Juliet Stuster, Gientsy Sy, Xochilt Togo and Christina Valdivia put in long hours and hard work. They will now go on and complete their Health Careers internship at Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital. Once they turn 18 years old, they can start working as a CNA."

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Upcoming open houses
· La Colina Junior High School, February 3 at 6:00 p.m. in the auditorium (bilingual meeting at 5:15 in the library)
· Santa Barbara High School, February 4 at 5:00 p.m.
· Goleta Valley Junior High School, February 9 at 6:00 p.m. in the auditorium
· La Cumbre Junior High School, February 24 at 6:30 p.m. in the theater/auditorium
· Santa Barbara Junior High School, February 10 at 6:30 p.m. in the Marjorie Luke Theater

 COMMENT 56543P agree helpful negative off topic

2010-02-04 07:28 AM

This makes sense. They have dumb down all classes on all levels. It's logical that GATE classes are now something that more kids can handle.

 

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