New classes at Mill Valley and De Soto High School differ

Classes at Mill Valley and De Soto High School change in the upcoming school year


By Avery Sheltra

Family and Consumer Sciences teacher Emily Schmidt observes her students as she teaches them SMART goals, which are life planning skills.

Alison Booth, JagWire editor-in-chief

As enrollment season begins, many students are noticing the surplus of new classes the district has added for the upcoming school year. However, some of these classes are projected to be available only at De Soto High School, while others will be available only at Mill Valley.

At Mill Valley, Leadership Service in Action will be offered next year. DHS will offer Game Design and Authoring the Web, Emerging Technologies, AP Computer Science and AP Environmental Science. At both high schools, AP Spanish Language and Culture will be available.

The courses, according to USD 232’s Teaching and Learning department, were requested based on an increased interest by students in the areas.

“Additional opportunities for students in areas of desired curriculum will enhance their experience and further prepare them for college or career choices,” the department said via email.

The course proposals are then narrowed down and reviewed by the Board of Education.

Classes will be available district-wide, but “if students are interested in a program, they are encouraged to transfer to DHS instead of trying to fit it in their schedule,” according to the department.

According to DHS junior Zach Diebert, who is planning on taking AP Computer Science next year, the class will likely be helpful in the future.

“I think it will be a fun class to take,” Diebert said. “I feel like it will help make me better at computer science and programming, [which is] something I can eventually use for a job.”

On the other hand, Mill Valley sophomore Andrew Thomas wants to take the same class, but doesn’t want to fully transfer to DHS solely for that class. Thomas said not having the same class at Mill Valley may hurt him later in life.

“I wish that Mill Valley did have these classes because I’m really interested in computer programming and I’d love to take that class here,” Thomas said. “The world is more technologically-based every day and not having the access to these classes is a disadvantage.”

The new class at Mill Valley, Leadership Service in Action, will be taught by Family and Consumer Science teacher Emily Schmidt, who said the class will be application-based and encouraged for all student leaders.

“It’s going to be leaders who are from different assets of Mill Valley,” Schmidt said. “We’ll talk about leadership schools, interpersonal skills [and] what it looks like to be a leader here.”

Schmidt said that while the class will only be offered at Mill Valley next year, the same or a similar class could be offered at DHS in the future.

“It’s something that’s maybe unique to Mill Valley and it’s something that we found our students needed,” Schmidt said. “I think it absolutely could be something that could be offered at De Soto at some point.”

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