By Jessica Jones
The air is getting colder and the days are getting shorter as summer ends and fall begins, bringing the academic season along with it.
Hopatcong High School is preparing for this upcoming school year with some new changes that will benefit its student body.
The world is always changing, presenting new challenges and obstacles in the way of the future generation’s success. What if students could not only sit down and listen, but also get up and act?
This year, teachers have received more professional development learning based on how to incorporate Problem Based Learning, or PBL, into the classroom. PBL is all about solving real world problems with one’s resources. Since technology is a huge part of lives today, all students are provided Chromebooks to assist in their learning.
Problem Based Learning allows for more open-ended and open-minded education, making classes more dynamic and making it easier to integrate more technology into lessons. At HHS, students will not only learn important concepts, they will learn how to effectively apply these concepts to the world around them.
Students who are having trouble with a research paper, short story or college essay can now stop by HHS’ new Writing Lab. The writing lab is a new study aid that will be held during select lunch periods. Students now have the ability to simply walk into the writing lab and get immediate help on any writing assignments.
Another new opportunity taking place at HHS this year is access to the new SCCC Dual Enrollment Courses. These courses are in partnership with SCCC, and they allow students to take college level courses while still in high school. The students are able to receive both high school and college credits simultaneously. To be able to take these courses, students must pass SCCC’s Accuplacer test for Math and English unless they have sufficient SAT or ACT scores. By taking these classes during high school students are able to earn college credits for half the cost.
“[I’m most excited about] strategizing and refining HHS’ goals, preparing students for college and beyond and creating an enjoyable, engaging work environment,” said Lewis Benfatti, principal at HHS. “Everything is updated and organized so that we can assist students the best way possible.”
Hopatcong High School is not just a school, but a small community of people who want to learn and who care about one another. HHS fosters creativity amongst its students, giving them a wide array of choices for classes, sports and extracurricular activities.
“The students are accepting and not afraid to express their originality,” said Jamie Walker, director of Guidance.
Not only that, but the staff is dedicated to helping the students grow into open-minded, problem-solving individuals ready to tackle the competitive world that awaits them.
Some other new things happening this school year include anti-bullying and anti-drug presentations and more community service activities. Other new or special events happening at HHS can be seen on its multiple social media accounts, including Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.