Lakeland Nixes SLCs

Lakeland Nixes SLCs

Liam Bradford, Editor-in-chief

A controversial project was discontinued in the Lakeland High School prior to the 2022-23 school year. In the previous two school years, each student younger than the 2023 class was required to complete a personal portfolio and present them to parents in the spring. 

The purpose of the portfolios was for students to analyze and reflect on their work in each class. The student-led conferences consisted of students presenting portfolios to their parents and explaining a few assignments or activities from each class. 

Initially, these student-led conferences were seen as an opportunity for parents to get an idea of what their children do all day after sending them off each morning for nearly seven hours. 

However, a primary reason they were discontinued was that higher achieving students partook in the conferences while struggling students did not participate as much as the school would have hoped. Since these conferences weren’t seeming to benefit struggling students, there wasn’t much room for self-improvement from the students who did participate in the conferences. 

The science department was in charge of putting together the portfolios, and the majority of time spent on these portfolios was in various science classes. 

One of only two returning science teachers, Laura Kelley, said, “As a teacher, it seems like the students that have A’s, B’s, and C’s were participating, while D and F students are the ones we need to be focusing on. Instead of continuing to cater to the group that needs no help, we will try to cater to the students who require extra help.” 

“I did not feel like they were beneficial to my daughter because I had already seen her portfolio many times before being a teacher. I am sure the parents of A and B students also felt it was somewhat of a time-waster,” Kelley added. 

Many higher-level students found that the conferences were somewhat of a waste of time spent in class. 

“There was no point in them. I’m glad I don’t have to spend all year worrying about completing a portfolio to show my parents for three minutes. My mom is always looking at my grades, so she didn’t need to know what I was doing in school. I did enjoy the free cookies, though,” said Colin Killian, a junior at LHS. 

While some students haven’t opposed the portfolios themself, an excessive amount of time was being spent in class on them. 

“I’m glad they got rid of it. Valuable class time was going towards the portfolios for the conferences. My parents liked how it caught them up with my school, but they could also just check Skyward and see the same thing,” said Regan Wright, also a junior at LHS. 

“First of all, the district looked at a lot of parent feedback over the years. The majority of it was there were better ways to spend the day. As of right now, we are going to meet with individual students and address ways that we can improve life at Lakeland,” said Lakeland’s asst. Principal Dustin Frank. “The feedback we received wasn’t all negative. I have seen some benefits, but the question is, is it the most efficient way to engage the student body? I think the biggest thing is we are always trying to assess, reflect, and find ways to maximize our positive impact on students,” Frank added.