Students weigh in on Global History II as only social studies option for juniors

Tom Fricke supports the shift.

While some students in the 2020 class are disappointed about the recent change to make the Global History II course the only option for juniors, others welcomed the change.

Social studies teacher Tom Fricke said that many social studies teachers, Mark Jackson, and the school committee came to the conclusion that it is extremely important to make sure students are “grounded in modern history, and fluent in global relations.”

Mr.  Fricke, one of the Global History II teachers, said, “I don’t think we can call ourselves global citizens if all we know is US history.” He firmly believes that this course vastly expands student knowledge on the time period covered in the tenth grade history class, U.S. History.

“As a U.S. History teacher, my favorite part of the class is all the stuff I get to learn. Learning more about the world for me is like icing on the cake,” said Mr. Fricke.

”I would have prefered to choose an elective social studies course that better suits my interests,” said Ben Robes-Kenworthy, a junior at ARHS. “It’s not the end of the world, but it’s like, come on Amherst.”

Fellow junior Antonio Polino was dissatisfied with the recent shift too, stating, “I am extremely frustrated with it. I want electives back so I can take a modern course focusing on what’s happening now.”

Global History II student Devon Glennon took a different stance, though. “I am indifferent, and the reason for that is I never saw the electives, so I don’t feel bad about missing them,” he said.

He noted that his favorite part of the class is “all the interactive activities,” and that he is “excited to elaborate upon the foundation that has been laid by the first month of Global History II.”

Bryan Dole, another member of the class of 2020, thinks one of the more important reasons to have this class is to understand more perspectives. “With one perspective, it could be the truth, but with multiple perspectives you start to get more of the full story,” said Dole. “You can jump to conclusions based on one perspective that may not be correct. The truth and the whole truth, that’s what I say.”

Junior Amina Mednicoff-Misra appreciates both sides of the change. “I think it’s a good thing because it lets us have a more globalized view of modern history, rather than a more Eurocentric perspective that we might’ve had with electives,” said Mednicoff-Misra. “The benefits of electives though, are that they give us more choices.”