New Year, New Course Selections

Need help picking class for next year? Here’s your guide to the Program of Studies.


Photo by Christmaelle Vernet

Students have also found course selections sheets such as these helpful in selecting classes.

Christmaelle Vernet, Staff Writer

As the school year creeps to a close, course selection season is in full swing. Some students are buzzing to find out what classes they will be recommended for in the following school year. On the BHS website, under the tab for academics, you will find the school’s annually updated Program of Studies. “The Program of Studies is the breadth of offering that we have for students. It is certainly designed with students in mind,” Assistant Superintendent Kristen Harmon said at the School Committee meeting on Feb. 3. “We make sure there is a way to meet all academic requirements, but there is so much more beyond that.” The online program of studies is a guide to what classes are available to take each year. With the prerequisites, the course title, and a brief description all in one place, the guide is a vital tool in finding what classes are the best fit for students. 

The following school year has many students excited to take the courses they could not have engaged in this school year, due to the pandemic precautions limiting what classes could be selected. “Next year I have decided to take child development 3. I am so excited. We get to play a lot with the kids and get experience. I want to be a teacher when I grow up, so this is perfect!” said sophomore, Haley Demanche.

There is also a brief video on electives available on the website as well. “The new electives video is detailed and shows a lot of information on classes and is helpful to know what different classes are like,” guidance counselor Alexis Tellert said.

The program of studies also outlines the career pathways.  A career pathway is a curriculum specifically designed to prepare students for a potential career choice. BHS offers several career pathways: Environmental Science and Technology, Law, Society, and Criminal Justice, Computer Science, Business, Entrepreneurship and Finance, Creative Economies, Health Careers, Culinary Arts and Hospitality, and Early Education and Care. “We have a number of these [pathways] that allow students to leave the high school with a certificate in their area that will allow them to enter directly into the workplace or ….be able to expand upon or continue onto at the college level,” Harmon said.

While many classes were cut due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a few new classes will be available for students next year. Black Studies and Music History: From the Blues to Beyonce are new additions alongside numerous new courses specializing in business and leadership.  Many English electives such as Shakespearean Literature, and Women in Literature will not be available to students in the 2021-2022 school year.

“When picking a class students can try thinking about things they enjoy and are passionate about. We look at the overall picture of classes students take to make sure there is a balance and not overwhelming with too many APs and finding classes that they enjoy and not feel too stressed about,” Tellert said.

Although many students could not take certain classes of their choice due to these unprecedented circumstances, this new school year should allow students to have more freedom to choose courses they couldn’t previously be placed in.