High school adds classes in economics, game design, and cryptology

North Attleborough High School

By Max Bowen

In an effort to better prepare students for careers in different fields, North Attleborough High School has added several new courses for the upcoming academic year.

NAHS Principal Peter Haviland said many of these classes have been made possible through the $30,000 Innovation Pathways grant that the school received last November. The grant provides funding for science and technology-related education, and among the new classes are an Engineering Pathway Capstone Project. Students in this course work on an engineering project, document the experience, and complete a minimum of 100 work hours on it.

I believe in the value of Pathways,” said Haviland at the School Committee meeting on Feb. 3. “I believe it can be duplicated in other areas. It creates real-world career experiences.”

Other course additions include AP Economics, a college-level course that looks at the principles of economics. In the new video game design class, students combine several aspects of computer science to build a game from scratch using JavaScript. Mathematics of Cryptology looks at the history, design, and analysis of methods used to encrypt and decrypt messages.

Pathways creates context for the courses,” said Haviland. “We inspire the students to see the objective more clearly.”

Some of the new classes are geared toward improving the learning atmosphere. The Unified Physical Education elective brings together students with and without disabilities to build a positive and accepting culture. The Pathways Program helps those with social-emotional barriers, providing a supportive environment and improving academic performance.

There are a lot of fun things happening,” said Haviland. “We’re growing and we’re happy about it. I’m looking forward to more kids having more opportunities at the high school.”