District calls sessions to plan new curriculum

Posted: Sunday, September 02, 2007

Starting this week, Juneau-Douglas High School students will be released one hour early each Monday so staff can begin planning for the new theme-based academies that begin with the 2008-09 school year.

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In keeping with the 35-member group that created the rough outline for Juneau's newly styled high school education, the district is calling the work sessions "Next Generation Staff Planning."

To keep from losing valuable class time during the Monday meetings, JDHS students will work through lunch, Susan Christianson, district spokeswoman, said. Students will be allowed to eat sack lunches in class, and the district plans to make snacks available.

Thunder Mountain High School Principal Patti Bippus will join JDHS Principal Bernie Sorenson to lead the work sessions.

Bippus said the first priority is to review what voters asked of the new education model. Staff will then break into groups to work on topics such as classroom instruction, student choice, public relations and how to decide which staff will work in which of the two high schools, she said.

Juneau Superintendent Peggy Cowan said results of the first five planning sessions will be shared at 7 p.m. Oct. 11, during a parent update in the JDHS commons.

"We want the community to be part of the process," Bippus said.

• Contact Greg Skinner at 523-2258 or greg.skinner@juneauempire.com.

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