Speaking to the Montgomery County School Board this week, Blacksburg High School Assistant Principal Adam Simpson presented a way to use a $50,000 Virginia Department of Education High School Innovation Grant to reinvent the high school curriculum.
“We are very excited about this project and have been working on since July 2018,” Simpson said.
He said that a committee of BHS teachers has put together a plan to restructure the first two years of the high school experience. The Bruin Academy will be a half-day school within in a school, with an alternate school bell schedule, for 25-50 ninth grade students starting next school year.
These freshman students will be taught interdisciplinary courses with co-teaching teams and project-based learning. There will be an emphasis on personalized learning by increasing student freedom related to his/her choice, voice, pace and place. Teachers will co-create content and learning targets.
The freshman year in the Bruin Academy would have a course where English 9 and World History One would be integrated. Another course would meld Environmental Science with Health and Physical Education. Algebra would be a standalone class. The sophomores would be offered a combined course of English 10 with Earth Science, Principles of Technology with World…