ASHVILLE – For the second consecutive year, summer school for St. Clair County students is being held at the Eden Career Tech Center.
This year, the enrollment is up for summer school compared to the number of students from last year.
Summer School director Adrianne Dodgen said there are 110 students, grades 5 through 12, who enrolled for summer school. Middle school students (fifth grade through eighth grade) are in one classroom setting while high school students are in another classroom.
“I think people realize summer school is changing because we live in a technology world,” Dodgen said. “Summer school is not how it used to be.”
Dodgen said they now have an Access program through the state for students who are academically advanced.
“These students are trying to get ahead academically by taking advanced courses,” Dodgen said. “This year, we have some advanced eighth grade students who took Spanish I during the regular school year, who are now taking Spanish II through Access here at summer school. This is our first year to have Access, so it has been sort of a challenge, but exciting. It really helps those students advance. Many students take this course during summer school to help clear schedules in order to take an AP class next year.”
Dodgen said students are allowed to work from home if they choose to.
“We have about half of our students who work from home,” Dodgen said. “They do come here to take their exams. We constantly stay in contact with the students and the parents. We do progress monitor twice a week. If they are not making adequate progress, they can lose that privilege and have to be back up here with us and the instructor from 7:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.”
Summer school started June 5 and will go through July 14. Access students will go through July 25.
There are two certified instructors who teach summer school. Catrina Cetadol teaches Language/Arts and Reading while David Springer teaches Math and helps with Science and History.
“They are both highly qualified,” Dodgen said.
Springer said modern technology is the driving force that has changed summer school.
“We are able to give a lot more opportunities for subjects,” Springer said. “Students being able to work some from home helps parents out a lot with time and gas. To me, that’s the two biggest improvements.”
Cetadol said summer school has seen a huge change in the past 15 to 20 years.
“Summer school is a great opportunity for these students,” Cetadol said. “I’m glad to be part of it. Students are working from home a lot, and they are taking the classes they need. It’s not just one teacher and one class. Students can work whatever times they want to work. If they are not a morning person, they can do the work in the afternoon. If I’m not here, they can text me and I’ll be glad to help them with whatever they need.”