Educational Philosophy

Proficiency in English is an essential component of education in the United States. An ability to understand and communicate in English is fundamental to the preservation of our democratic system and to the well-being of its citizens.

Guiding Principles

An essential component of education and the learning process is the development of proficiency in the arts of language. The ability to articulate and respond to complex ideas is a requirement of participatory citizenship and ultimately allows each of us to be more fully human.
  • Speak and write clear, idiomatic English.
  • Engage in the writing process, from pre-writing to editing and peer feedback to revision.
  • Develop voice and depth in both personal and literary papers
  • Develop confidence, independence and critical judgment relative to ones own work.
  • Understand as fully as possible what is read.
  • Increase understanding of self and others through literature.
  • Develop standards of judgment and taste in literature.
  • Find enduring pleasure and value in reading good books.

In order to realize these objectives, students will be grouped homogeneously. Grade l0 and 11-12 English Courses will be divided into honors (H), Accelerated/Enriched (AE), College Prep (CP) and College Prep 1 (CP1), each level doing work commensurate with ability.  Grade 12 will be divided into Advanced Placement (AP), College Prep 1 (CP1), and six heterogeneously grouped courses:  Senior Project (year-long), and five semester-long courses:  Literature and Sports, Science Fiction and Fantasy, Literature and the Human Condition, and Contemporary Nonfiction.

Freshman English, English l, is less finely divided, with only Honors students being homogeneously grouped. CP1 courses stress improvement of practical communication skills and employ high interest materials and shorter length reading and writing assignments. CP courses are designed for the majority of students, i.e., those who have an adequate command of communication skills but desire to improve them. AE courses are designed to challenge those who have a superior command of reading and writing skills, and wish to pursue their studies in greater depth. Honors/AP classes are designed to accommodate those students whose academic interests and abilities will be fulfilled in analytical work and in independent study.

To meet the requirements of the English Department, each student will complete a four-year fundamental program. Individualized English for freshmen (#115) and sophomores (#126 ) meets this requirement, as does the ninth grade Transition Program course (#151). These three offerings are by teacher recommendation only. Creative Writing (#149), Creative Writing II (#150), and Public Speaking and Debate (#895) are electives which do not fulfill department requirements.  The creative writing courses will not be offered during the 2014-2015 school year.

Click on the Program of Studies link above for more information.

Authors Corner: Author's Corner is a webpage where teachers have submitted personal narratives from students of all grades that demonstrate strong personal reflection.  We hope you enjoy the selections!  

Dianne Telicki - Regional Department Chairperson
Telephone: (978)264-4700 extension 3477
Fax: (978)266-1133

Click HERE for a list of teacher websites.