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Advanced Courses Beyond AP and IB Should Be Offered at CHS

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Advanced Placement (AP) and International Baccalaureate (IB) courses are commonly recognized as the highest-level classes that a CHS student can take or be expected to take. However, a surprisingly large number of students on-campus exhaust the courses of a particular subject and still wish to continue their education in that field. Yet, most are unable to do so due to the lack of such courses being offered at school. While alternative options to remedy this issue exist, a much simpler solution would include offering advanced courses at CHS.

In order to fulfill the desire for continuing education, many have turned to attending classes at the Claremont Colleges. While it may seem exciting and beneficial to participate in dual enrollment, it brings an unnecessary amount of stress that could be alleviated by offering higher-level courses at CHS. Students in such a situation need to consider many factors, including scheduling conflicts between high school and the colleges, the commute between the two schools, or catching up on high school work missed as a result of attending a college course. Therefore, many students are often discouraged from attending the nearby universities due to the hassle and strain that it can bring on one’s mind.

Although it may seem absurd to some, many students actually want to be challenged by the classes that they are in. The entire idea of education is based on intellectual stimulation, prompting interest to improve skills and gain a more profound understanding of academic concepts. Not offering the higher-level courses that provide such a drive for knowledge stagnates the learning for those who feel that they are unchallenged.

Those who have absolutely no interest in academic challenge still have a reason to take courses beyond the scope of the AP and IB programs. Acceptance to universities in the U.S. has become extraordinarily competitive with many students across the country flaunting flawless grades, superb test scores, and remarkable commitment to extracurricular activities. Giving students the opportunity to participate in rigorous courses not only exposes them to university level curriculum but also allows them to have an extra advantage when applying to universities. Admissions officers are sure to take note of the academic rigor associated with topics such as quantum mechanics, and, thus, recognize that the student is ready for what the university has to offer. While some believe taking courses at an actual university would be more favorable in regards to college apps, one must consider the aforementioned factors concerning unnecessary stress. The headache that comes with the hassle of taking a college course could hinder performance in the class and lead to a more inadequate grade than anticipated. Consequently, the entire purpose of the effort would then be pointless. After all, the same ideas and topics would be discussed, albeit in a high school setting. Essentially, the same benefits could be achieved without the fatigue of dual enrollment.

Although it may be difficult for the school to provide the resources necessary for offering such courses, it is certainly not impossible. In lieu of costly expenses such as superficial renovations, the school can hire teachers and purchase necessary course materials. On the other hand, if a student chooses not to pursue the next step, he or she should still have the choice to continue their learning. Whether it be for reasons regarding appearance to universities or simply the desire to be academically challenged, it is clear that many students want to have courses at CHS such as linear algebra and special relativity. It should therefore be a responsibility of the school administration to provide for the students who have worked the hardest and wish to continue demonstrating the intense passion that they have for knowledge.

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The student news site of Claremont High School
Advanced Courses Beyond AP and IB Should Be Offered at CHS