KO adds exciting electives to 2022-2023 curriculum


With Conference Day recently held on April 14, many Kingswood Oxford students have spent the month contemplating what courses they want to enroll in for next year. 

Each March, the school releases its updated course of study, a lengthy document containing all the course offerings for the next academic year. Most years, some new electives added to KO’s wide selection of courses, and this year was no exception. Two departments, including the history and science departments, added new electives to their curriculum for the upcoming school year. 

In the science department, two new electives will be offered next year: Human Anatomy and Physiology 2, and Genetics. 

Science teacher Kata Baker created Human Anatomy and Physiology 1 last year and is excited to offer a continuation of the course next year. The class will be held during the spring semester and will be open to juniors and seniors. The course will cover topics such as the digestive system, the nervous system, and the reproductive system. In addition, this class will include numerous hands-on activities and will even culminate with a full organism dissection. 

Mrs. Baker hopes that this course will teach students the anatomy aspect of biology that they did not get to learn about in their biology classes. “The curriculum in biology has shifted, because as the scientific community learns more about genetics, that topic is broadening, which means it takes more time,” Mrs. Baker said. “The human anatomy and physiology section that we used to have in biology has essentially gotten pushed out.”

The other new course being offered next year is Genetics, taught by science teacher Carmen Kreager. Genetics will also be held in the second semester and is open to juniors and seniors. The course will cover topics ranging from genomics, gene expression, gene editing technologies, and genetics application to forensics. Labs and projects will also be incorporated into the class; one of the more exciting opportunities is experimenting with gel electrophoresis.

In the history department, three new electives will be offered during the 2022-23 school year including: The Election of 2022, We the People – The Citizen and the Constitution, and Race in the Americas. 

Students in The Election of 2022 course will look at major congressional, senate, and gubernatorial races in 2022 and the importance of midterm elections. This course, taught by history teacher Stacy Savin, will be held in the fall of 2022 during the upcoming elections. This is an interactive course where students will present potential scenarios for the political makeup of our country and the states. “We launched an election of 2020 class two years ago and had so much fun and success with it that we’re doing that again,” history Department Chair David Baker said. 

 The second new history elective, We the People – The Citizen and the Constitution, taught by history teacher Stephanie Sperber, will also be offered in the first semester. The aim is to provide students with a basic understanding of civic life, politics, and government. This class will additionally include interactive elements such as a mock congressional hearing. This course is open for students in their sophomore, junior, and senior years and is excellent for those who would like to prepare for AP Political Science during their senior year.

The other new history elective that will be offered next year is a course titled Race in the Americas and will be held during the spring semester open to juniors and seniors. Taught by history teacher Gene Cassidy, this course is going to examine the concept and practice of race. The first half of the class will look at the concept of race from as early as ancient times to today, and the second part of the course will shift towards studying the role race plays in society. 

With all these new electives being offered next year, students certainly have a lot to think about when it comes to registering for courses next year.