That’s why Southeast Polk offers a wide range of instructional programs and competitions that not only provide a basic education but also allow students to pursue different pathways to take on challenges that uncover their interests and encourage them to strive for success. Opportunities for accelerated and compacted coursework as well as honors courses are available at different levels. In addition, students have options for dual-enrollment courses as well as Advanced Placement, online learning, and post-secondary enrollment.
The Southeast Polk Community School District provides differentiated programming for students who have been identified as possessing very high intellectual abilities — about five to seven percent of our students. They are identified through the use of screening tools that include the Kingore Observation Inventory, Planned Experiences, Cognitive Abilities Test, and Iowa Assessments. Our program offers students a greater latitude of inquiry and provides a wide variety of opportunities for exploration, investigation and specialization through seminars, special activities, outdoor field activities, independent study, discussion groups, and product development. We also offer Advanced Placement programs for these and other students that allow them to take courses for which they can earn credits toward an associate or bachelor’s degree.
We are fortunate in that we have an increasingly diverse student population from which all of us can learn and respect different cultures. More than 200 of our students come from families where English is not their native language. Southeast Polk’s English Language Learner program uses an approach called “sheltered instruction.” This means students learn the language both in their classrooms and individually with an English language instructor. The District has English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) instructors in every school building. Students stay in their own school for English language instruction. Southeast Polk’s English Language Learner program is designed to help English Language (EL) students:
Southeast Polk is the proud host of the annual Iowa Industrial Technology Exposition. It is an exciting event that gives our students the chance to compete with students across the state in showcasing their knowledge and skills in technology. The Expo Showcase gives junior high and high school students opportunities to demonstrate knowledge and skills in graphic communications, energy and power systems, transportation, material processing, problem-solving inventions and robotics. We believe that successful completion of technology courses will enable students to be more technically skilled, work cooperatively, develop a positive attitude toward learning and work and apply knowledge obtained in all areas of the curriculum to the world of work.
Students tend to learn best when they are in a comfortable environment. For that reason, some of our classrooms offer flexible seating in our junior high classrooms. Students can choose to sit wherever they want in the classroom — sitting at a desk, standing desk, or even on the floor.