Changes underway for Saturday Academy
Saturday Academy will be more focused on student support this year. Like last year, administration hopes to provide a space for students to work with their teachers to make up missed work, gain confidence in skills they may have missed in class and take advantage of added opportunities.
In its first year, Saturday Academy was advertised primarily with the focus on students’ ability to make up absences. Students were handed sheets showing missing attendance before some of last year’s Saturday dates if they had missed any school days and were eligible to make them up.
“This year we’re broadening Saturday Academy; there will be a focus on support to help students who are struggling,” Student Success Advisor Katherine Warren said. “The bottom line is that we need to have our students overall be a little higher in terms of academic productivity. I think that if we can just start to improve slowly and begin to pick it up, that we’ll see really really strong results from this by the end of the first semester and definitely by the end of next semester.”
Students receiving D’s or F’s in any of their classes are the students in need of the most support, according to Warren.
To extend this support, Warren said she will “pull the data, contact the families and ‘highly recommend’” that students attend Saturday Academy.
Warren will do this as part of her role as the Student Success Advisor.
Along with opportunities to make up academic work, Saturday Academy will also offer added opportunities including workshops on how to write the best possible college essay, assistance filling out financial aid forms or writing college applications. AP and test review sessions may also be offered.
Warren acknowledged that initial offerings might not represent the full breadth of the opportunities that Saturday Academy plans to provide.
“I think that it’s important that students and staff alike have patience around all these new supports that were trying to put in place,” Warren said. “There are going to be bumps and maybe off the bat there may not be the most titillating and interesting offerings but we’re getting there.”
If students are unable to make the full four hours, they are still encouraged to come and participate. In order to make up absences, attendance must be for four hours. At the end of the day, Warren believes that Saturday Academy will be a great opportunity for students to learn and boost their academic success throughout this year. Warren believes that Saturday Academy will improve with every date this year and has great potential to grow.
“We just need to keep at it together,” Warren said.