ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – Middle schools in Abilene Independent School District (AISD) will soon start to see new curricula added to their courses. The district says they plan to start offering classes like robotics and coding, life readiness, leadership, and other skills they will need. 

One Abilene mom, Tiffany, says offering lifestyle courses for students at a young age will be beneficial. 

“I think it helps because you’re laying down a foundation at a young age before they get those engraved habits,” said Tiffany.

Dr. Ketta Garduno is the associate superintendent for curriculum instruction for AISD. She says it has been several years since the district has made major changes to the middle school coursework. 

“We worked really hard to try to align some of the courses that we’re offering to either skills that the students need to be successful academically or in life, or career investigation type information so that they’ll be able to make those connections as they’re selecting courses in high school or exposing them to specific high school courses,” said Dr. Garduno. 

Now that AISD high school campuses have eight-period days, Dr. Garduno says the emphasis is no longer on trying to earn a large number of high school credits in eighth grade. 

“Instead, our focus on middle school level really needs to be on exposing the kids to a variety of opportunities, things they may be interested in,” said Dr. Garduno. 

Dr. Garduno says so far, the feedback from parents and students has been nothing but positive.  

“Our kids are excited to have choices and they’re learning more about those choices now,” said Dr. Garduno.  

She believes these new courses will help students to think about their future career options. Now a group of academic leaders is being assembled, as Dr. Garduno says they want to expend all their resources.