Saratoga becomes “Distinguished”

March 18, 2009 — by Saniha Shankar and Kavya Nagarajan

For the first time in many years, the school has become a California Distinguished School again.

“I’ve always known that Saratoga High is a distinguished and special school,” said principal Jeff Anderson, “so I decided that it was about time that we got an official recognition of it.”

Several members from many different schools who work as part of a committee to find “California Distinguished Schools” came to survey Saratoga on Feb. 23. The school applied for the honor based on academic improvements that resulted from open access policy in many honors and AP classes and the annual writing assessments by the English department.

The open AP access policy which started three years ago, has resulted in many more students enrolling in advanced classes in
English, social studies, and science.

The writing assessment is given in the fall and spring. It shows students their current writing ability while giving teachers a better insight into their students’ needs.

“I think the open access policy is really cool because it gives everyone the chance to take whatever class they want to take and makes it an even playing field,” said junior Eric Chiang.

After describing two policies in a report put together by English teacher Cathy Head, the school was also thoroughly examined. Several students who were elected as school tour guides led the visitors through many of the classes, At the end of the day, Saratoga had impressed the panel.

“It’s nice for someone from the outside to come into Saratoga, and say, ‘Hey, we like what you’re doing too,’” said Anderson.