Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Some Things That Makes Odyssey Different


The Odyssey Course Drop Policy ...
"Unless all parties are in agreement: parents, student, teacher, counselor, and the appropriate administrators (grade level, IB, principal), our expectation is students are making a one year commitment to their courses (or a one semester commitment for semester courses). This includes band, chorus, and orchestra."

Odyssey Clubs and Extra-Curricular Activities
"This brochure includes all the clubs and activities currently available. It is Odyssey’s goal for every student to be involved in at least one extracurricular activity. If you have an idea for a club or activity not currently offered, you can get one started. All you need is an adult advisor who can supervise all meetings and activities."

Anonymous said ...
... "I am not a VIP, just someone that got in early and benefited from the siblings rule. The minority ratio bothers me. The minorities I know at the school are upper-middle class. It seems like almost all of the parents I know there have college degrees themselves. Maybe that has something to do with Odyssey's success as well. These parents put a high value on education.    6/16/2010 10:42 AM

Anonymous said ...
You need to do some research into how the ranking is done. It is based on the percentage of students who take AP or IB exams. Two factors are at work here that make Odyssey hit this list year after year. 1. The overall school population is lower than the rest of the high schools in the district. Since AP/IB courses are typically taken only by 11th & 12th graders and a small number of accelerated 10th graders, you're talking about roughly 250 kids. 2. EVERY student is strongly encouraged to take at least 1 AP or IB course. Teachers and administrators tell the students and the parents they should challenge themselves and that they are there to help them succeed. And so, they do get a pretty good size group of kids who go for the exams.

6/16/2010 10:42 AM
SCATS ~~ And then there's the issue of students who MUST take an AP class they don't necessarily have an interest in. With block scheduling, staffing allocations and so few course choices due to the small size school, it may be the only class that fits their schedule. (Course Scheduling)


Anonymous said...

Kids do not take an "IB" class the IB is a program that starts in 11th grade. It is not like taking an individual AP class. There are less that 40 that actually complete the IB course of study.

Anonymous said...

My child is a senior and is not in the IB program, but is taking two IB courses this year. He has slightly different homework than students in the IB program, but that is the only difference. He has fulfilled his science objectives, but is still taking Regents Physics. He took four years of a language even though he was only required to take three. There are very few easy electives and students are encouraged to fill out their schedules with courses that will prepare them for college.

Anonymous said...

Fact check

At Odyssey, and any other IB school, kids can take the full IB Diploma - which is the equivalent of six AP courses a year in grade 11 and another 6 in grade 12 - plus the extended essay and service requirements - OR you can take IB courses individually. I don't think it is accurate that kids are forced into AP or IB. I can't recall a time when the schedule dictated a kid take IB/AP. However, what is true is that a small school has a tight schedule with fewer options - by far - and Odyssey kids complain about this all the time. One of the trade offs of the school is many fewer choices.

Odyssey people trade that off with a quality solid program that most kids are expected to take. Every kid who thinks he/she is going to college is encouraged - and should be encouraged - to take at least one AP or IB because it is simply the best preparation for the level of work they will face in college. Many other schools also encourage this. That's how big schools like Penfield and Hilton got on the list. Because they believe kids should try the hard courses.

Odyssey students complain about lack of choices, excessive work load, strict no-drop policy, high expectations for behavior and achievement, and too much supervision.

Personally,. when I went to high school, if you had a good report card, you hid it. The difference between then and now is OK with me.

SCATS said...

To 10:42PM ~~ Re: " I don't think it is accurate that kids are forced into AP or IB."

It has happened due to the tight scheduling and lack of choices that you remarked about. I'm aware of several instances.