Microeconomics a spring option for seniors

Microeconomics a spring option for seniors

photo by Bailey Fisher

Katarina Harrison, Staff Reporter

Starting next semester, seniors will have the opportunity to take AP Microeconomics, a class that has not been offered at the school before. Students in the class will explore topics like, how to maximize profits, and the benefits and drawbacks of the public sector of the economy, and the reasons that people make economic decisions.

AP Macroeconomics has been offered at the school in the past, and will continue to be offered, but it is not required for students interested in taking Microeconomics. AP Microeconomics will address economic issues on a smaller scale than AP Macroeconomics, focusing more on the individual rather than national and world economies as a whole.

“When we talk about microeconomics, we’re focused essentially on what motivates businesses and individuals,” teacher William Bordelon said. “That kind of ‘Why do we make decisions in the first place?’.”

Many people believe that economics is only focused on money, and how people and governments manage money. The real focus of economics, however, is the reasons that people make choices and decisions, whether those decisions include monetary transactions or not.

“In order to understand something you have to understand why someone made that decision. And that’s why I like it [economics] so much. You’re analyzing why people are doing stuff,” senior Stephen Chapman said.

Bordelon also teaches AP Macroeconomics, and had the highest pass rate in the district on the AP Macroeconomics exam, raising the school’s passing rate from below 40 percent to 78 percent. His record as a teacher helped him in his efforts to convince administrators to approve the course for next semester, but the decision was also based on the course offerings of other schools in the district.

“It is offered at other places and we want to give our students, who I believe are the absolute best students in the district, a chance at competing,” assistant principal Jesse Walker said.

AP Microeconomics will also provide students interested in going into business or finance vital information that would help them both in college and in the real world. A basic understanding of Microeconomics would be beneficial to students interested in starting small businesses, helping them to understand how to maximize benefits, including profits.

Originally, many seniors would have been unable to take AP Microeconomics due to schedule problems. AP Government, a required course for seniors, took up many students’ second periods, the only class period AP Microeconomics was offered. However, Bordelon has been approved to teach a class period of AP Microeconomics during first period, in addition to the second period class. Ten students, however, will have to sign up in order to fill the first period class, or Bordelon will not be able to teach it. Students looking to sign up for the course would need to talk to their guidance counselor and find flexibility in their schedule.

“I believe that economics is probably not just simply the most interesting class you’ll take, but also, probably the most important, because it tells you mechanically how the world works,” Bordelon said.

In the future, the school is considering expanding the AP program even further to include AP Comparative Government.