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Meeting with Scheduling Consultant Reaffirms Opportunities

4432978461_5a8bbc4235From April 13 to 15, a team from Phillips Academy tasked with mapping the new 4×5 schedule—Yasmine Allen, Clyfe Beckwith, Deborah Olander, Ken Shows, and Rachel Skiffer—traveled to Independent School Management (ISM) headquarters in Wilmington, Delaware, to participate in a series of meetings that provided deeper insight into the art and science of scheduling. With guidance from the President of ISM, Roxanne Higgins, and several specialists in scheduling and database software, the team worked with an electronic scheduling tool that took data from Andover’s 2015-2016 course registration information (such as student course selection, offerings by teacher, and classroom assignments) and displayed pathways for arranging the data in the new schedule template.

The group also discussed some of the priorities of Andover’s academic program that will be important features of the new schedule. These include topics such as ensuring the contiguous flow of early language courses, determining the appropriate timing of AP courses, cultivating the natural connection between math and science courses, planning for course registration, and reviewing the system for class level changes. The trip to ISM confirmed that there are great opportunities for these elements in the new schedule and that the process of mapping them into the schedule will be smooth. Stay tuned for more details.

Upcoming faculty meetings related to the Strategic Plan include the April 25 update on Empathy and Balance; the May 2 update on Equity and Inclusion; and a discussion about our sports and exercise requirement on May 9. Thanks to members of the implementation working groups and to so many others in the Andover community who are working hard to advance these important initiatives.

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