Restructured academic support at high school continuing
DARIEN — After a successful trial run, the high school is planning to continue on with the restructuring of academic support they implemented this year.
For the current school year, Darien High School added 300 level — college prep — classes with labs and 300 level classes taught by two teachers. These courses provided more systemic support for students while maintaining the structure and rigor of the curriculum. Lab classes had pre- and post-teaching sessions with the content teacher for students who required small-group instruction. The labs met three to four times within an eight day class cycle. The labs are optional, but Darien High School principal Ellen Dunn said the majority of students use the extra sessions.
“They’re going cause they see the value,” she said. “They’re really seeing the benefit of these relationships. We’re proud of them and pleased.”
Based on feedback from parents, teachers and students, the high school found the dual-taught classes also provided better understanding by having the perspective of two instructors.
The high school is planning on continuing these types of courses into the following school year, finding that students and parents felt they helped increase student understanding and confidence, as well as improved the transition from eighth to ninth grade.
Moving forward, Dunn said the school would look to improve on scheduling challenges and staffing demands caused by the lab courses.