Course Selections Changed Slightly for COVID-19


Addie Grimm

Different courses available to students are displayed on North’s Course Offering and Planning Guide website.

Addie Grimm, Photo Editor

These are very uncertain times, and it’s hard to plan for the future right now. Despite the uncertainties, course selection for next year’s classes is still happening,  just with modifications for COVID-19. 

Selections determine your classes for next year, and most students feel that these are very important decisions and that those decisions have lasting effects. 

“If you choose to challenge yourself, for example, like taking AP courses, then you’re going to be better off later down the line because you can get college credit and it looks good on your transcript for college,” said Miles Watts, junior, “so it’s pretty important to balance out your schedule and figure out where you want to challenge yourself and where you want to choose easier classes.”

Not only do students have to balance the difficulty of their schedules, but they also have to consider making their schedule exciting and addressing personal interests. 

“Like, for example, for me, I really like art… so I want to explore more about that. And there’s a lot of classes with different types, like taking pictures, or like doing videos, but I’m more interested in like, sculptures or paintings,” said freshman Emily Ocampo. 

Course selection is a very serious matter, although this year some modifications had to be made due to COVID-19. One major difference between this year and in years past is the timing.

“Last year, we met with students a little bit later in the year, which typically tends to help students make a better decision with the courses there are looking to pick, they tend to have a little bit more of an idea of what they want to take,” said Megan Frank, student counselor. 

Although the timeline for this year was different, the biggest difference for course selection was that the counselor meetings were conducted through Zoom  instead. The meetings are 10 minutes long and they focus on discussing selections, recommendations, grades, credits, and graduation requirements.

“Our time with students is not being shortened at all. So that is really nice, that we still get to have the same amount of time to meet with every single student,” said Frank. 

One big question that people had was whether or not courses were being planned based on the assumption that next year would be back to normal. Considering that it is so hard to predict the future because of COVID-19 and we are unable to predict whether we will be in person or hybrid for next year, our counselors are planning next year’s schedules as if next year will be back to normal, in-person learning.

“We’re trying to hope that everything is back to normal, like next year. So yes, we’re scheduling things in hopes that everything is as normal as it can be next year,” said Frank. 

Other aspects of the process remained the same too. Logistically, schedules and course selections are being planned for a normal 2021-2022 year, but not all students are planning their courses the same way. 

“I didn’t really consider it [next year] to be normal. Because there’s probably still gonna be changes next year. So I just assumed that it would be maybe blended learning, or just online. So I considered those options, especially for like classes like P.E and things and like my electives and stuff,” said sophomore Sophie Reck. 

While students still seem to be counting COVID-19 as a factor when it comes to course selection, Frank observed that there does not seem to be any decline in students signing up for hands-on classes such as autos, woods, culinary, or arts. Students are still choosing courses that align with their interests, probably hoping that things may be different by next year. 

Other aspects of the course selection process still remained the same. The presentations and videos used to inform students about the available courses were still shared with them. 

“Those resources were actually helpful. Because the stuff on HAC, it doesn’t always tell you exactly what it’s about, and sometimes you don’t know where to go on the North website. So I thought they helped,” said Sloane Klein, freshman.

There was also some continuity on the logistic side of the course selection process. The process of teachers giving course suggestions and inputting selections into Home Access Center (HAC) is just like normal.  

“The course selection process [is the same] as far as like entering them into Home Access Center. So nothing has changed about logistics of how to sign up for courses,” said Frank. 

Overall, the course selection process remains the same despite some modifications made due to COVID-19. Although it is unsure, keeping a positive attitude towards the process and next school year is key. 

“We love seeing all of our students during this time and it’s fun to see what you guys are all interested in and what you want to take. So we definitely look forward to these meetings and we’re excited for them every year,” said Frank.