By Alex Kirshner ’18
The course catalog at Brophy is always changing, with new electives being added every year.
But these electives don’t just appear, and there are many steps that these new classes must go through before they are added to a schedule.
Assistant Principal for Academic Affairs, Mr. Seamus Walsh said that new classes come about in many ways.
“New courses can come about in multiple ways,” he said. “Sometimes it comes from the chairs of each department themselves.”
Mr. Walsh said that there is an academic board that is made up of department chairs, as well as a few other faculty members and administrators, and new classes may come from that group.
Mr. Walsh said that often times teachers propose classes about subjects they are interested in or passionate about.
English department chair Mr. John Damaso ‘97 says he plays a small role in the creation of new classes.
“More of a facilitator role,” he said. “When people in the department become enthusiastic about a topic and they feel like they can build a semester length course around that topic, they make a proposal… write that up and that it can enter the course catalog for students to schedule.”
Mr. Walsh said that student interest plays a large role in whether or not a class will be implemented in the next year.
“We throw it out there, and at that point it will be a question of student interest,” he said.
The course requests that are sent out in February of every year to freshman, sophomores and juniors are the way that Mr. Walsh and others gauge student interest.
“Once we get all the data back, we will then be staring at numbers of interest,” he said.
Mr. Damaso said that there are new proposed electives for senior English for those students who are in regular English.
“We’ve had a pretty wide assortment of electives that students can take in lieu of AP IV,” he said.
There are seven electives for senior english students ranging from a creative writing class to a class focused on Ernest Hemingway.
Both Mr. Walsh and Mr. Damaso said that not every new class that is proposed gets implemented into the course load for the next year because there are not enough students that are interested in the class.