English/Journalism switches get favorable comments so far

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When the holiday vacation was over many Obama 9-11th grade students returned to school and found a real surprise in their schedule. 11th grade English classes now had Mrs. Wilson,  and some of the 10th grade students were switched into CAS classes which are generally much harder than PSP classes. And for those whose classes did not change Mrs. Wilson’s 10th grade English class got mixed with Mr. Kocur’s English class. Mr. Kocur was no longer teaching journalism which many kids did not like at all. So now there’s a new journalism teacher.

I went to several students and asked how they felt about the switch and found there were both negative and positive things to say.

11th grade English responses:

Student: “I like it but then, I didn’t like Mrs. Eutsler. I felt that she was getting too old to teach. The difference between her and Mrs. Wilson is that Mrs. Wilson teaches.”

Student: “The switch was more of a better choice. It’s more challenging now and more work. Mrs. Eutsler didn’t teach I.B work, everyone was being taught mainstream level.”

10th grade English responses:

Student: “I don’t like it because some PSP English kids came to CAS English class and they’re always talking about us and saying how we’re weird and talk different.”

“I like the switch. Mr. Kocur gives us a lot of work and Ms. Wilson didn’t give us a lot of work,” said a CAS student.

Of course, the teachers are going to do what is best for their students and prepare them for what they need by the time they get to the next level of education.

Ms. Wilson said “from a teachers perspective no teachers wants to have changes in the middle of the school year. From a personal perspective I loved my 10th grade classes.” At first it was devastating and I did not want to do it but to professional to adult change happens over time and there’s no point of wasting time and energy. So things are going to change and happen overtime. It’s emotionally tough but it was the transition that was just tough. I love teaching 11th grade as much as I taught 10th grade. I taught 11th grade many times and always wondered if I’ll ever go back to teaching but I never expected it to happen in the middle of the year. Now that I’m teaching 11th grade I asked if I can have my 10th grade back so now I’ll be teaching 11th grade next year.

Meanwhile, Mr.Kocur felt basically the same way, saying, “ Ideally, I would have loved to keep the same schedule all year long. Journalism really was a hit among our students. But the stakes are just too high where English is concerned. We can’t afford to lose a day let alone a half a year with a steady, revolving door of substitute teachers coming in. With PSSA’s around the corner, the changes had to be made.”

So far, it seems like students are making the adjustment, even though it does seem to be more work across the board.

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Pittsburgh Barack Obama Academy of International Studies
English/Journalism switches get favorable comments so far