Kuna High School's Rapid Growing

Living in Kuna, we are all pretty subject to change. In 2008, our population was 13,250,  but as of the 2016 census, Kuna´s population was up to 17.9 thousand. Kuna is rapidly growing and this growth is causing the whole city to make changes, especially KHS. KHS has grown immensley throughout the past few years.

From one of the people who has been with KHS and witnessed its rapid growing, Wendy Johnson, Kuna School District’s Superintendent was asked What she is most proud of as superintendent, she responded ¨ I have a lot of things to be proud of in this district. Probably the thing I am most proud of is how collaborative we are as a district. I'm also really proud of the students that we have, I think a perfect example of how awesome our kids here at Kuna is,The assembly that some of the students put together for the walkout. Using that venue to educate and honor, and inform. I was really proud of our kids. Because it could've just been a free for all kind of a thing, but it wasn't, it was we want to help empower our colleagues, our peers, and that was very cool. And a lot of those kids who put it together came from all different walks of life, and that's what makes Kuna good¨.

Kuna is unique in a lot of ways, we have a broad range of classes, coming to Kuna High from the Middle school, one of the things I was most excited was all of the interesting classes i was able to take. I know the thought of the classes I think could be interesting being dropped would cause stress for me. When Superintendent johnson was asked, What classes will be dropped from kuna high school next year? She responded with ¨ I haven't seen the final registration numbers yet  because the number of classes are really dependent on registration numbers. Because a lot of the classes that we offer here are really dependent of the number of students that enroll in those classes.¨

Kuna really seems to try to make an effort to insure every student has something to participate in. For some people thats tennis, football, chess and for some it’s dance. When she was asked ¨ What classes and extracurriculars and clubs will be added next year?¨ She responded ¨Yes, there is some conversation about having a Dance team. Some students currently practice with Mountain Views Dance team, along with their lacrosse team. And this year students who wish to can join SkyViews swim team. But there has been discussion of making a dance team for Kuna High¨.

 Kuna really values its athletic When she was asked ¨Are we becoming a 4A school next year? (4A and 5A are the athletic ranking of schools in Idaho.)¨ She responded, “We are moving down again to 4A next year. This year and the prior year we were 5A. We Petitioned to move down to a 4A for the next 2 years and well re-asses that the following year¨.  

When asked,  ¨ How does the budget struggle for the coming year compare to other budget years? How would you say this compares?¨ She responded with ¨We have actually been working for the last 3 years to improve our fund balance. We have been trying to improve salaries for teachers, which we have been able to do. We did an analysis of all of the salary schedules in the valley all the way up to Mountain Home, and Kuna school district has the 2ncd highest paying scale, to Boise School District¨.

When asked, ¨With the recent passing of the bond and levy, are we expecting more or less community support to cover our needs as a district?¨, She responded  with ¨I think we’ll probably have more, because people get excited about opportunities for kids¨.

When asked ¨How are non-returning teachers being supported by the district?¨ She responded ¨When we hire a teacher after august, they are notified that they are on a one-year contract. They know it's kind of a trial and error type of situation. Usually One-Year teachers are hired to cover growth.¨ When asked ¨How will this impact our long-term planning for enrollment numbers as a district? It is a guessing game of our enrollment¨. She responded with, ¨It is a guessing game of our enrollment. We predicted that were going to have 200 students less than what we thought we were going to have next year because there is another charter school opening up within our boundaries¨.

When asked, ¨Are there any plans to raise additional community support and awareness for our budget situation as a district?¨ She responded with, ¨Anytime someone wants to see what our budget is, its on our website. They can see our expenses, teachers salaries, contracts, all of that¨.

When asked, ¨Is there any chance of enrollment adjustments later on in the summer?¨, She responded with, ¨Yes, I monitor enrollment. Pretty much weekly over the summer, and daily the first week or two fo school starting¨. When asked ¨Can you describe the way that the district plans for enrollment numbers? She responded with, ¨We work with our realtors. We payed someone to do a study, and they said to expect 200 new students every year for the next 10 years ¨.

When asked ¨As superintendent, what is the most difficult part of your job? ¨, she responded with ¨The most difficult part of my job is, balancing all of the needs that our students and teachers have, with the budget that we have. I was a teacher in this school district, so I know the needs, from a very personal level ¨.

When asked what she enjoyed the most she responded with ¨I enjoy getting to do things like this, interacting with students. I miss that with being superintendent. I love to work with adults, but my job background is working with students, high school students specifically. I also love being able to watch kids grow up, from Kindergarten through 12th grade; that's very cool ¨.

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Is the Pathway System Needed?

As you probably know, every year that you register for your classes, you have to either continue with your current pathway or change it, but are the pathways really needed?

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Upcoming DC Classes

The end of the year is coming up close and people have turned in their registration forms, but there are some new classes for upperclassmen that they might not know about. Some elective courses have been added, like culinary classes and videography classes. There are also new Language Arts Dual Credit classes next year’s Juniors and Seniors can take. Juniors can take Dual Credit Language Arts 3 and English 101 Composition, and Seniors can take Dual Credit Language Arts 4 and English 175 Introduction to Literature Study. Students need 9 Language Arts credits to graduate, and taking a Dual Credit class can also really help you gain college credits you need to graduate college. Throughout your high school years, you will have 8 total language arts credits by just taking the standard grade language arts class, and then one credit will be earned through Speech when you take it your Junior year. So if you get your schedule this fall and decide you actually want to take one of these Dual Credit or Advanced Language Arts classes, you can always ask your counselor about switching!

What the Process of now Becoming a Senior is Like

As you hit the first year of high school, you enjoy the time you have before it gets even more difficult. In my first year of high school as a freshman, I thought of the school as a big place, but now that I’ve grown, it just decreases in size. It always seemed as though the teachers were going very easy on me, and not giving me any homework to do. Let’s just say that freshman year was easy, too easy, and slow. I had very long classes and lectures, but very little work. It was the slowest year I’ve ever had in all my years of school. Freshman year was easy, and not necessarily academically hard, but hard because you’re considered immature and foolish to many. You’re new to everything and how the system works. In this stage of my education life, I was excited to not have any problems like dealing with SATs, senior projects, etc., because I was in the first stage of high school.

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