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Ophir School District proposing name, curriculum changes

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By Emily Stifler Managing Editor

The Ophir School District has had
its name for nearly a century, but
that may soon change.
The district is proposing changing
its name to the Big Sky School
District, and also making the Lone
Peak High School curriculum more rigorous.
It will host three community
forums to gather public input on
these topics. District superintendent
Jerry House, school board
member Barbara Rowley and
teacher Tony Beardsley will present
at the public meetings.
The purpose of the meetings will be
to gather input regarding:
• Big Sky’s geography, and how
a district name change from
Ophir School District to Big
Sky School District would help
or hinder education and/or business
• Class offerings and how an increase
would benefit students
• The value of an LPHS diploma
with increased credits and a
capstone project
The name change will not cost
the district, and is just a matter of
public preference, House said. The
schools would keep their current names.
Changes to the high school curriculum could require students to
complete more credits before graduating.
Currently, LPHS students
must complete 22 credits, but that
number could increase to anywhere
from 25 to 32, House said.
The state requires students to com –
plete 20 credits to graduate high school.
“We’re looking at the rigors of the
curriculum we’re offering to make
sure kids are ready for the global
world,” he said. “It’s an effort to
make our students better prepared.”
This change would come with a
cost, because the school would have
to pay for additional teacher hours.
“I believe… that as a community
school, any time you’re doing or
suggesting major changes you need
public input,” House said.
The meetings are on Mondays in
January, from 6:30 – 7:30 p.m:
Jan. 16 – Big Sky Community Library
Jan. 23 – Big Sky Chapel
Jan. 30 – Town Center Theater

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