New courses are being brought to life next year

Many new courses are being offered next year. Out of the 20, eight of these new courses will be physical education classes.


A group of students practice yoga during their double period of the class on Feb. 14th. The class is taught by yoga instructor Andrea Skowronek. photo by Cece Curran

by Cece Curran

Next year, STA will offer 20 new courses in various departments. The new courses available include new physical education courses, English, theology, art, science, performing arts and technology classes.

Out of the 20 new courses, eight will be physical education courses, including CPR/AED and first aid training, Eclipse Ball, Zumba, Tai Chi, Badminton, Pilates/yoga and Yoga Stretch and Meditation. Physical Education teacher Stacie O’Rear has decided to divide the freshman classes in half instead of having them take a full year of freshmen P.E. O’Rear says they will still include all of the sexual reproduction, STDs, substances and nutrition. Next year, they will add in some basic first aid training, more mindfulness training and some CPR training. O’Rear says the students won’t be certified, but will at least have a basic introduction to CPR and AED.

“We’re just kind of changing up [the way freshman P.E. is structured] a little, but hopefully getting the freshman maybe a little bit more time in their schedule so that they can meet with teachers or work on projects with other students,” O’Rear said, “just because their schedules are so tight.”

Out of the eight P.E. courses, a portion of them are for ¼ credit. These courses include the CPR/AED and first aid training, eclipse ball, zumba, tai chi and badminton. However, pilates/yoga, yoga stretch and meditation and independent study physical education will be ½ a credit. The new course, tai chi, is an ancient art form that comes from martial arts. O’Rear described it as very slow, controlled movements.

All of these new P.E. courses are offering a larger variety of opportunities for students.

“I feel like the meditation part would be a good stress reliever for me, considering junior year is supposed to be really hard,”sophomore Ellery Stubbers, who registered for yoga stretch and meditation, said.

Along with the P.E. courses, there will be some new technology, theology, art and dance courses available. The new theology course, Women as Witnesses, is a new elective that will focus on Christian women in scripture and tradition and the CSJs.

“The theology department had a wonderful discussion about it, and felt that it would be a great course to offer at an all girls school” Principal of Academic Affairs Barbara McCormick said.

Next year, the English department will be changing the courses that are taken junior and senior year. They are changing who they are offered to, and the length of those courses. AP English Literature is offered to both juniors and seniors next year, and College Composition will now be a year long course rather than just a semester long course. Eventually, the order that students take the two classes will change.

“[The English department] feels that more students are ready for this particular AP course at the junior level,” McCormick said. “And that it capitalizes on much of the literature read their sophomore year, therefore they perform better.”

There will also be three courses offered over the summer. Personal finance and speech have always been provided for students that want or need to get that credit out of the way. The new course being offered is Ecology, which will be online over the summer with a few on-campus labs.