By: Marissa Handerhan, Hidden Valley High School, and Roshni Lalchandani, Cave Spring High School
Foreign language classes offered through public schools provide opportunities for students to broaden their understanding of the world and enhance their communication skills within different cultures. Due to a decline of class enrollment, German may no longer be a course offered through Roanoke County Schools in the near future.
“The number of students that enroll in German have been dropping throughout the years, especially in higher level German classes,” Hidden Valley High School Principal, Rhonda Stegall commented.
The future of the German program looks bleak, due to lack of student interest. In Hidden Valley High School, there are currently only three German classes offered, compared to larger languages like Latin and Spanish, which offer 11 to 14 classes.
“The goal is to phase the program out over time because of the lack of numbers,” Stegall explained. “German doesn’t get as much publicity; it’s not as pretty as French or Spanish. Sometimes it gets shoved into the background.”
Hidden Valley High School junior Caley Fry spoke of the benefits of learning the German Language. “Germany has one of the most prosperous economies right now, and is prevalently used in the business world.”
At Cave Spring High School, the German course has already been taken out of the curriculum.
“I think that Cave Spring should offer German, because it would give students a wider range of world languages to choose from,” said Jasen Tran, a Cave Spring junior.
The possibility that German will be removed as a foreign language class option at Hidden Valley has some students alarmed.
“It’s very sad that kids will not get the opportunity to learn German,” remarked Hidden Valley sophomore Morgan Day.