Which credits will my child earn if he or she successfully completes the Academy

Students who successfully complete the Academy will earn a variety of credits in each of the four high school years including all of the graduation requirements for high school in both English and Social Studies. Following are the credits earned each year in the Shepard Academy:

  • Freshman year:  English 9H, US History Honors, Urban Affairs, Speech, Grammar, and State and Local Government
  • Sophomore year:  English 10H, World History Honors, International Social Movements, Critical Thinking and Argumentaion; Current Issues, Problems and Events; and Composition  
  • Junior year:  AP Language/Composition*, Advanced Speech*, Law Education, Special Topics:  Social Justice*, The History of American Social Movements*, Debate, Community Service
  • Senior year:  AP Literature/Composition*; US Government*; Economics*; Current Issues, Problems, and Events; International Relations

*Designates courses for which students can earn college credit.


What happens if my student decides that he/she does not want to continue in the Academy? 
A determination about exiting the Academy will be made by a joint decision of the parents, counselors, teachers, and administration.

Will new Academy students be allowed to start after the freshman year?   Can other students take these courses as electives?
A student may enter the program as either a freshman, sophomore, or junior. The junior and senior year curriculum are designed to build upon one another.  It is for this reason that students who are enrolled as juniors are expected to continue into the senior year.  This is also the reason why we do not accept new seniors in the program.

In order to take any of the Shepard courses, a student must have completed an application and be enrolled in the Academy.

How would teaching methods in the Academy be different from other courses?
Academy courses will be highly student-centered. Students will participate in deliberations and discussions and may also have independent and group projects. Students will also be exposed to various outside opportunities and influential members of the community.

How would the content be different from the classes that other students are required to take? 
These courses will include all of the graduation requirements for all four years of high school in both English and Social Studies. The remainder of the credits will be elective classes.


How will this program give my student an advantage when he applies for colleges?
This program will provide unique experiences to the students and will require them to participate in rigorous learning activities. The Academy will provide a distinction that sets our students apart from other applicants. This experience will demonstrate a student’s commitment to learning that extends beyond the traditional programs offered. The nature of the work in the Academy will also develop essential skills for student success in their future endeavors.