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When Blue Ridge School Board members arrived for a workshop on January 28, a large black bag waited at each place at the table. The bags each contained a brand-new, fully-equipped laptop computer, complete with wireless detached mouse, a battery charger for use in a car, and other accessories. The computers were pre-loaded with a full suite of software and configured for wired as well as wireless Internet access. Each person at the table, including principals, business manager, superintendent and secretary was similarly outfitted.
Next year, if all goes according to plan, high school students at Mountain View will be able to enroll in advanced placement courses, a course on Greek, Roman, and Norse mythology, and intermediate guitar. These are some of the course offerings highlighted at the January 28 school board meeting. The mythology course is scheduled to be next year's embodiment of the culture shock curriculum, and intermediate guitar will be held due to the success of the beginning guitar class, which had 35 students enrolled this year. (These students are slated to perform in the spring's Arts Alive program.) Conversational French and Spanish, the art of baking, and a new music class called Like Notes, are also on the itinerary. The latter will be a continuance of the current culture shock course. Music faculty have traditionally spent part of their day monitoring study halls and doing cafeteria duty. It was thought that this time could be better spent. Although the rotating culture shock class will move to its new department and subject matter next year as scheduled, the music course has been so successful it will be made into a regular class.
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