Summer heats up with learning opportunities


Photo courtesy of WCHS.

The Local Summer School Program, offered across schools in MCPS, has a wide variety of course options for students who want to take classes over the summer.

By Caroline Harless, Photo Manager

“Are you interested in taking credit courses like Health and Honors Geometry this summer? Are you interested in taking enrichment courses like College Essay Writing and SAT/ACT Prep? Sign up for the free Churchill Local Summer School Program as soon as possible!” 

You have probably become accustomed to hearing this part of the announcements prompting students to sign up for summer courses at WCHS. Nonetheless, despite the daily message, many students still know very little about the program. 

While most look forward to spending their summer at camp or on vacation, others delegate their time to extra classes. Summer courses can be great for students who want to take advantage of the extra material. 

“Here at WCHS we’re offering what’s called the Local Summer School Program,” WCHS teacher Evan Rosenthal, who is running the program, said. “It’s essentially an opportunity for students at various schools across MCPS to take classes in person at their school over the summer.”

Some questions have arised for many students about what courses are offered or how to sign up for the classes. However, the process is fairly simple. Students simply have to complete a Google Form specifying what courses they want to take from the options provided and whether they will be attending session one (June 29 – July 19) or session two (July 21 – August 8). The Google Form can be found through Principle Taylor’s Sunday night emails or the WCHS website.

“In the program we offer credit courses such as Honors Health and Honors Geometry which are the most popular among students who sign up,” Rosenthal said. “Enrichment courses such as SAT/ACT Prep, prep for AP sciences and College Essay Writing are also offered.”  

With the wide variety of courses to choose from, the Local Summer School Program appeals to many students at WCHS, no matter the reason they may be signing up for classes. 

“We really have all types of students take courses during the Local Summer School Program,” Rosenthal said. “Whether it’s students who are trying to get ahead in their course work, students who need to retake a class or students who are just trying to keep their mind active, the program can be useful to anyone.”

Many students opt for the summer program because it can be more convenient to complete required courses, like math or health, over the summer instead of taking them during the school year. 

“I took Honors Geometry A and B over the summer online,” WCHS sophomore Marissa Patrick said. “I decided to take it over the summer because I wanted to check out the resources and be able to expand or switch into other classes with the free schedule time.”

However, completing a full-year course over the summer comes with its own set of challenges as the material is compacted into a shorter amount of time, making the course more intense. 

“The workload for the summer course was a big increase to regular full-year courses due to the nature of condensing a full school year’s class into six weeks,” Patrick said. “I would say that although the workload was drastically increased, the difficulty of the course was not too much to manage.”

Besides completing a course over the summer as opposed to having to take it during the school year, another benefit of the Local Summer School Program is the guarantee of smaller classes and more specialized one-on-one instruction. 

“I think that classes during the summer are absolutely beneficial to students, especially to those who need the added support of smaller class sizes which we can give during the summer,” Rosenthal said. “And because the classes aren’t all day, students still have that much needed time to decompress during the summer.”

The Local Summer School Program allows students to gain beneficial knowledge while simultaneously letting them enjoy their summer and relax, making it an excellent opportunity for all students. 

“I would definitely recommend other students to take these courses if they want to get credit, don’t have many plans over the summer and are dedicated to completing their work,” Patrick said. “It’s a great opportunity that I think more people should take advantage of.”