ERWC Rehauls Curriculum

Jasmine Fernandez, Editor-In-Chief

With teachers, classes and curriculum adapting to the new school year, courses such as CSU-ERWC, or California State University Expository Reading and Writing Course, have undergone revision to accommodate new requirements in the course-load. These changes were brought about by a grant gifted to the class by the Downey district.


While the class’ core focus remains on analysis and composition, the curriculum as a whole finds new footing in studying rhetoric and its constituent devices. This emphasis will later find itself utilized as the classes delve into the college application process, as the class is senior-exclusive.


ERWC students such as Daniel Valdez, 12, who have experience with rhetoric because of their past in AP Language and Composition believe that this change will ultimately benefit their comprehension of the class.


“I feel this change definitely fits the past lessons with the curriculum of past english courses that I have taken,” Valdez said. “Having gone through multiple courses having to analyze rhetorical strategies and write essays revolving around rhetoric, it will help me hone my skills in understanding rhetoric.”


According to Ms. Peña, ERWC teacher and revisor, rehauling the curriculum was a “team effort” that required input from all ERWC teachers. Effectively, the expert projects that students had been required to complete as a final assignment in the class have been done away with, replaced instead with a research project that is still in development. Peña cites an emphasis on rhetorical strategies as reasoning for this change, though she is still sad to see the expert projects go.


However, students of the class such as Kirsten Rodriguez, 12, view the change in lesson plans as a chance to alleviate end-of-year anxiety.


“I feel like it will take a lot of stress off my senior year,” Rodriguez said. “I appreciate the teachers taking [their] students into consideration.”


Although the curriculum now emphasizes the importance of rhetorical devices over the class’s traditional focus on college applications, revisors of the class are ensuring that the content learned throughout the semester will tie back to students’ college essays. In the past, the course’s guidance with college applications has been a hook for students to enroll in the class.


Applying to schools within the UC and Cal State systems as a first generation college student, Lizzette Tapia, 12, anticipates the class’ help with the application process.


“I took the class hoping to gain some insight on how to write a good college essay,” Tapia said. “It’s hard for me because my family’s never gone through it but I really want to go to a school I’m happy at.”


For more information on ERWC and the changes made to the course, visit Ms. Peña in S-2, Mrs. Nishioka in A-210, Ms. Nuñez in A-112, Mrs. Ordway in R-8 or Mrs. Ramirez in A-213.