According to the Seaholm Administration, effective November 6, Seaholm AP Physics I and II teacher Michelle Bagdasarian resigned, leaving an incomplete schedule for many junior and senior students.
“I was looking forward to the class, and now I don’t really know what my plan is,” junior Dominic Bertollini said.
Bertollini, like most students who signed up for either AP Physics courses, did not have the class first trimester. Now the students will be expected to find a new course, science or otherwise, to fill the holes in their schedule.
Ideally, students would be able to switch into the same course at Groves High School to get both the credit and the curriculum they were hoping for. However, although additional classes have been added at Groves, there is still not enough room for every student.
“I’m having trouble finding a class to switch into that isn’t already full,” Bertollini said.
The administration is working tirelessly to try and amend schedules and please the students, but this is no easy feat.
“They’ve opened up more spots for kids to take physics at Groves and I’ve heard the teacher over there is really good,” junior Ben Williams said. “Also they have five or six other options in case that doesn’t work, and that’s very cool.”
Williams, unlike Bertollini, was one of the students who took AP Physics I first trimester. He has Bagdasarian for the beginning part of the trimester, and then had her substitute replacement, Bill Crosby.
“Mrs. Bagdasarian was a very interesting teacher to have,” Williams said, “At about the halfway point in the trimester I think she started to be a better teacher, but my classmates seemed to think differently,” Williams said.
However, no matter what kind of teacher Bagdasarian was, there was no disputing the fact that the class was not progressing as quickly as it needed to. Crosby was asked to come in and teach the last few weeks of the trimester.
“Mr. Crosby is definitely experienced with physics and that’s helped a lot, but it’s easy to tell we’re behind,” Williams said. “We’ve had to rush learning a few different concepts and that’s been tough.”
The students seem to love Crosby, but he has prior engagements, according to an email sent to students from the Administration, and cannot teach for the remainder of the year.
“It would be nice to be able to have him 3rd tri but sometimes things don’t work out,” Williams said.
Williams isn’t the only student who is less than happy with the current predicament. Junior Paige Hartwig, another student in the AP Physics I A class, also expresses irritation.
“It’s frustrating,” Hartwig said. “The first teacher was put in an awkward position only being hired a week before school started. It was really nice of a retired teacher to come in and fill in, but I just feel like we should’ve had more of a game plan for Physics B.”
She concurs with Williams about the multiple options being offered to students by counselors and the administration. While they do commend the work the administration has put in to fix the situation, some students feel that the situation could’ve been avoided.
“I’m a little disappointed with everything going on, but not with Bagdasarian or Crosby,” Williams said. “This really falls on the administration and the hiring of Mrs. Bagdasarian in the first place. I can say that I am happy with how they’ve been resolving things though and I appreciate all the effort they’ve put in.”
However, some students have decided to look at the situation in a positive light. Senior Anna Barr feels that the dilemma may actually be a blessing in disguise.
“I’m a little disappointed because it is an AP class that I enjoy,” Barr said. “However, it will most likely end up lightening up my difficult schedule and I can’t complain too much about that.”
At the end of the day, although the situation is less than ideal, students, administrators, teachers, and counselors have found a way to work together to fix a problem that, ultimately, affects a whole school.
“It’s disappointing that we got into this predicament in the first place,” Barr said, “but given that we don’t have a teacher, I think the school is handling it the best they can.”
By Caroline Owens