The school board last month approved the addition of three new courses to be offered next school year

Molalla High School is adding three new courses next year, including Advanced Placement Microeconomics, Journalism A and B, and Introduction to Veterinary Science B.

All of the courses went through multiple levels to be approved, and the course additions were ultimately approved at last month's school board meeting.

The AP Microeconomics course was proposed by business teacher Corri Ellis. Currently, there is no stand-alone economics class offered at the high school, and state economics standards are embedded into social studies classes. Within the course, students will study product markets, the role of government in promoting efficiency and equity in the economy and more, according to the course proposal.

The microeconomics class will be the third AP offering at the high school.

"Currently, we have two AP offerings in the curriculum guide, and it is certainly our goal to increase that number," said Principal Brad Berzinski at the January school board meeting. "This is a first step in that direction."

The cost to add the course will be mitigated by using state Measure 98 funds, as AP Microeconomics fits into Measure 98 goals, specifically addressing increasing college-level opportunities for students.

The journalism course addition is actually an expansion of an existing class. Journalism was offered for the first time during this school year. Instructor John Flavin wants to expand it to a two-term class. And it seems he has enough student interest to justify it.

"They have produced one student magazine already this year," Berzinski said, "and he has a number of students that are just going to stay on outside of the formal structure of the class and continue to produce student magazines throughout the school year."

MHS is looking to formalize a partnership with Clackamas Community College regarding the journalism class, and as such, the class may also fit into Measure 98 funding.

The veterinary science course, too is an expansion of an existing course. Veterinary Science A was taught for the first time during the 2016-17 school year, and the addition of a second class is based on student interest in Vet Science A.

Kristen Wohlers
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