MEDFORD, Ore. — North Medford High School offers more than 20 advanced placement and college credit courses. More than 3,000 college credits are earned at North every year, but with instruction time being cut down in the classroom, students worry about the outlook of their advanced courses.
While South Medford High School teachers picketed through the rain, their advanced placement students worked through the lesson plans left behind. Caitlin Lee said her A.P. class is challenging and she relies heavily on feedback from her teacher.
“Especially in A.P. Comp, you have to be talking to the teacher all the time, asking them ‘am I doing this right? Am I finding right diction? Am I finding right syntax?’ It’s not something as a student you can judge yourself,” said Lee.
Lee said her teacher left behind lesson plans, but there’s been no instruction in the classroom through the first two days back. The A.P. exams are held in May and determine how many college credits a student receives.
Medford students have already missed more than a weeks of instruction from snow and strike days, and now with an altered schedule, Lee isn’t sure if she’ll be ready for the exam.
“This is college credits that we’re talking about. I mean colleges are going to see this and if I don’t have enough to prepare myself for this exam, then I’m failing myself and I’m not putting myself in good shoes for college,” said Lee.
While the teachers have walked out, North Medford High School principal Ron Beick has stepped up. He has teaching advanced math classes during the strike and said it’s hard to find teachers with A.P. qualifications, even under normal circumstances.
“Those are always the most difficult to find substitutes for any time of year, and that’s not something we can have go too much longer. We’re going to have to find solutions for that, and we’re working on that now,” said Beick.
As for Lee, she’s not sure if she’ll pick up her number two pencil when the exam date arrives.
“Honestly, I don’t know. I’m not sure what I’m going to do. I’m not sure how I’m going to be able to get back onto schedule,” said Lee.
After 10 days without advanced placement teachers, students must have a qualified teacher with an endorsement in that content area. District officials said they are taking it day by day and are working toward securing the needed teachers if they go past 10 days.