FUHSD offers Science and Society course for the 2022-2023 school year

Looking into the new, district-wide science course


Graphic courtesy of Kyle Jones

Science and Society course logo

Aashi Venkat

Science and Society — a course that focuses on relevant scientific topics and their connection to modern-day society — will be introduced within FUHSD as a new course option for the 2022-2023 school year. The course will be UC-credited, and can count for either life science or physical science credits. 

Science teacher Kyle Jones, who is part of the team that developed the course, says the course is intended to appeal to the student body. 

“We wanted an accessible science course that felt relevant [and] connected to [social] issues that [students are] aware of,” Jones said. “We have a unit on addiction, which might be interesting to students that have direct experiences with that. We have a unit on space mining, which might attract people who are into certain areas of space exploration, which is a pretty hot topic right now. We have a unit on genetics and genetic engineering, which is more health-related. We have one on energy, which is a basic fundamental — you can’t have society without energy.” 

The course’s project-based curriculum contrasts from the traditional testing-based curriculum that most courses currently have; one’s grade heavily relies on how they apply their knowledge in a project following each unit, rather than on in-class test performance. These projects will expand upon the major topics covered during the unit and additionally provide real world applications of them, enhancing the extent of which students understand them. An example project is a waste management project where students formulate, test and present a method to decrease the waste produced by MVHS. 

Jones believes that implementing this course will be effective in making science more equitable for the student body, as this non-traditional method of education helps students who may struggle with the typical test-based structure.

“It’s more project-based, so it’s going to focus more on creating something,” Jones said. “Science and Society is a class where the issues that [are directly] affecting you — or people you know — [are] the emphasis, and the theory of science is the tool to understand that. So it flips it in a way that can make it more engaging and applicable.”