Saying Goodbye To Tech & Biz


Left to right: Mr.Stone, Ms.Henneman, Mr.Monaster(Lead Teacher of Tech & Biz)

Gissel Garcia, Arts and Entertainment Editor

The Technology & Business Academy has left the building! This academy has been part of Birmingham Community Charter High School since it went charter in 2009. Eight years of hard work keeping this academy alive sparks the question, “What happened?” In order to answer this question, everyone first needs to know, “What was it about?”

The Technology and Business Academy (Tech & Biz) held structural engineering as their elective classes teaching mainly on design and construction of structures. When this academy began, it was partners with the Mash Academy, they were the most popular academy out there. When Tech & Biz went independent, their popularity went down due to the other academies selling the students on the electives and activities they had to offer. Tech & Biz was “mainly focusing on the students future goals rather than competing in a popularity contest,” said Mr. Monaster, who was the lead teacher of the academy. Although this academy wasn’t as popular as the rest, they still held activities and fundraisers and featured field trips to the Americana at Brand, Santa Monica Beach, and even camping! The Technology and Business Academy was an outstanding academy that illustrated the success that this school reaches for every day, the future students.

The administration took out the Tech & Biz academy for that very reason, to open new doors to the future and for the current students attending Birmingham. One new door to the future is the opening of the new 10th Grade Academy.

The administration decided to change the way the academies work by letting students choose different electives from different academies. Freeing the academies from the career pathways opened up more electives/choices.  This gives the students more choices to see what they want to take, leading them to their future career.

The administration decided to take this new action last summer. After all this time, the administration didn’t give early notification to the main people that took part in the academy. None of the people who were part of the academy had a say in the change and some of them did not support it.

The change brought about by Tech & Biz being removed meant that many staff members were sad. Mrs. Henemann, a BCCHS English teacher for five years, was unhappy about finding out through an email that the Tech & Biz Academy was no more. She loved working with Mr. Monaster as he was her “father figure.” Mr. Monaster said in regards to the academy, “I’m glad they made the change to help future students, but wish the administration would have kept me on track about it.” He had a difficult time when the academy shut down, but he has had no changes in his class schedule. Mr. Stone, a BCCHS Math teacher, is open to changes and “hopes that the reasoning for the change is soon to be seen.” He agrees with Mr. Monaster’s view that he wishes that “the change was made with a bigger discussion including the administration, teachers, and counselors working together.”

Throughout this change, it has affected many staff members and their position, but it also affected the students.