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Cd’A School District trustees vote against schedule alignment

Staff Writer | May 3, 2022 1:05 AM

The Coeur d’Alene School District board of trustees voted against aligning the schedules of its two high schools Monday night, a decade-long discussion.

Instead, the board recommended administrative work with Coeur d’Alene High School to identify avenues to increase course offerings, as well as work with Lake City High School to review current course loads and opportunities for meaningful electives.

The recommendations will be presented to the board in December, with the intent to implement them in 2023.

A 2009 and 2019 curriculum audit flagged the differences for graduation requirements and course offering between the two high schools as an important equity issue.

The variance stems from different schedules each high school follows, allowing Lake City High School students to take an additional two classes per semester, graduating with 12 more electives than students at Coeur d’Alene High School. However, CHS students ended up spending more time in core classes throughout the semester.

Because of its schedule, LCHS also offers 67 more courses unique to the school than CHS.

Community input showed that while the majority of the community wanted the graduation requirements to be the same across both high schools, most were not concerned about the schedules aligning, and some opposed it.

The question remained how to offer both schools equal opportunities for electives.

“I think our best approach is with our teachers and administrators at (CHS) to come up with some ideas,” Superintendent Shon Hocker said. “I think there’s some great ways for us to continue and maybe even grow some more choices for all of our students.”

Hocker said it would be important to ask CHS what it wants from a blank slate. He said there are space constraints at CHS, and a lot to consider when attempting to add new courses.

Trustee Casey Morrisroe said in a message to the board that he realized the community is not as interested in school schedules aligning as it is with equal graduation requirements and course opportunities.

Morrisroe requested the board focus more on opportunities for both schools. He said he would like to see more electives at CHS and an increase in core course instructional minutes at LCHS, as well as elimination or reduction of non-academic offerings like classroom aids at both schools.