Administration makes plans for new courses

San Marin is reaching out to the Novato PD for the new program.

Assistant Principal Mike Casper and Principal Mark Sims have been finalizing plans for a new public service course pathway at San Marin.

The public service pathway aims to promote and prepare students for jobs in public service. The hope is that, if the courses are successfully completed, the students will get college credits going towards an Associates Degree in Administration of Justice, according to Sims.

The classes of the pathway will meet existing class standards with embedded course curriculum. This year, English teacher Damon Uriarte has created a new English class for juniors called English 11: Literacy, Advocacy, & Public Service: Advanced English in Public Service, which has embedded law and public service curriculum as part of the public service pathway that Casper planned last year.

The program has reached out to form partnerships with local organizations involved in public service, including the Novato Police Department and North Bay Security.

Principal Mark Sims has been working to secure a partnership with College of Marin or Santa Rosa Junior College to bring additional support and resources to the program.

According to Sims, both colleges have expressed interest, but differing visions for the program have arisen, causing the program to stall. Despite this, Sims and Casper plan to solve this difference in vision and to see the program to fruition.

“I believe that [the program] will put students better trained and better educated in positions of law enforcement, and we want people in law enforcement not to think with a gun, but with their mind,” Sims said. “Most people who go through and complete a college degree [have] had a lot more thinking than somebody who has not. That doesn’t mean that one is a better police officer or better in law enforcement than the other, but it makes them more well- rounded.”

Casper and Sims plan to roll out the program in the 2019-2020 school year.