The two new classes at Cleveland High are Small Group Jazz Improvisation and AP Economics.
The Small Group Jazz Improvisation class was added to the curriculum at the request of a teacher, interest expressed by students and for the fact that fine arts promotes academics.
Students do not need any previous experience playing jazz music, but first priority for the class goes to current band members, according to the teacher Clay Fuller.
Out of the 18 students enrolled in the class this year, all but one student is a current band member.
This class’ objective is to perform.
“Our target audience is elementary school children to stimulate their interest in music and hopefully persuade them to want to enroll in beginner band,” said Fuller.
According to Fuller, he is also planning a set of classic, jazz and big band tunes to perform at nursing homes because “the residents really appreciate having young people come in and share their talents.”
The repertoire for the class will be published “big band style arrangements,” that will also include improvisational solo sections.
The instruments played in the class consist of alto, tenor and baritone saxophone, trumpets, trombones, bass guitar, guitar, drum set, piano, and auxiliary percussion.
Students, however, are required to provide their own instruments for the class because the “district only provides a fraction of the funds required to run a 4A school band program,” said Fuller.
The class will have multiple performances this year.
Glenna Weeks will teach the new AP Economics class at Cleveland High School this year.
Dr. Lisa Bramuchi, the assistant superintendent of curriculum, instruction and assessment, said that, usually, “the more advanced classes a student takes, the higher the ACT score.”
East Side High School is also offering a new class this semester, Advanced World Geography.
This class, taught by George Green, requires students to complete geography before they can advance to Advanced World Geography.
The rigor of the curriculum will be more advanced than that of the Geography class, according to Bramuchi, and will count as an advanced elective for students.
Although Cleveland School District has had to go through budget cuts, nothing was eliminated to make room for these new additions to the curriculum.