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The City Journals

Summer Classes Provide Opportunities For Students To Advance

Aug 06, 2015 10:35AM ● By Bryan Scott

Copper Hills High School students finish up their mile

By Tori Jorgensen 

West Jordan - For the first time, Copper Hills High School is offering several summer classes for original credit, which will give students an opportunity to get ahead in their schooling or take more elective credits. 

Glen Varga, vice principal of CHHS, said the administration added the summer classes because of the high demand from students. 

“We offer many fun electives, but they don’t fit into the students’ schedules,” Varga said. “We’d hear students in the office talking about how they would like to take seminary, or students in the halls saying ‘I gotta do band’ or ‘I gotta do music.’ When we caught wind of the complaints, we discussed the idea of summer classes in an administration meeting.” 

Prior to this summer, CHHS students wanting to take summer classes were sent over to Valley High School. Timothy Martinson, summer lifetime fitness instructor, said summer classes at CHHS provide an inexpensive and practical alternative, as VHS classes can cost up to $225. The fees for CHHS summer courses are as follows: debate, $75; math college prep honors, $95; and lifetime fitness, $50. 

Lifetime fitness is the first summer class to be offered, starting at the end of June through July. The class was quite popular, drawing almost 30 students to sign up. Martinson said that after the district approved the summer gym class, the same template was followed to get other classes offered during summer break. 

“As our incoming classes get bigger and bigger, more and more sophomores come in.  It makes it difficult. We can’t offer enough sections of lifetime fitness and it is hard for kids to get it into their schedule,” Martinson said. 

Natalie Keele, a junior at CHHS, said it would have been next-to-impossible to fit gym into her normal school schedule. 

“I didn’t take it last year because I had cheer, and I thought that would count [for gym], but it didn’t. I also couldn’t take it this year, so I was kinda screwed if it weren’t for this class,” Keele said. 

Many students have expressed their appreciation for summer classes so that they can take electives. Marrie Mills said she is going to take theatre with the open space in her schedule. Braden Robinson said he will finally be able to take the art class that will go toward his graduation. 

“I like how this class is not a full semester; it is just a couple weeks. It makes it nice because then you can still have your summer and still be able to get the credits that you need,” Robinson said. “I also think summer classes are more relaxed than the other classes during the school year.”

Taylor Buckner said she does not feel like summer gym is relaxed because it requires lots of running. She said the most challenging part of summer class is waking up on time and motivating herself to get to the school when her friends are out in the sun. 

Buckner said, “At least next year when everyone else is complaining about having to go to gym, I’ll be like, ‘Hey, I’m done, man.’”

Students may still enroll in Math and Debate summer classes by visiting the CHHS main office between the hours of 9 a.m. and 3 p.m.  Debate will run from August 3 to August 21, Monday through Thursday, and college prep honors math will run August 3 through August 18, Monday through Thursday. 

Varga said he hopes the debate and math classes will get filled to full capacity. 

“If we see success this year we have the justification to continue,” he said. “We hope to be able to expand the program next year.”