Godby High School’s Zondra Clayton continues to do the unthinkable – building physics enrollment at a low income school

Thanks for the post on Tallahassee’s Zondra Clayton, Godby HS teacher of the year and innovator on access to physics! And thanks to Paul Cottle’s Bridge to Tomorrow blog for important public communication about science in FL!

Bridge to Tomorrow

Only a few years ago, there were no physics classes and no physics students at Godby High School.  This was both sad and predictable:  Godby was one of Tallahassee’s two lowest income high schools, and the other (Rickards) had an IB program.

But then Zondra Clayton decided to change that.  In 2013-14, Zondra managed to coax 49 students into her Honors Physics classes at Godby.  The following year, it was 118.  And this year, 175.  (Numbers courtesy of the good folks at the Florida Department of Education)

Are those numbers big?  Consider this:  Last year, Godby had a total of 1,267 students.  Only 209 of those were 12th graders.

So in a school where poverty should be a stone cold obstacle to learning, nearly all of the school’s future graduates will have taken a physics course.  Zondra’s achievement is mind-boggling, especially in a state where the physics-taking rate among high…

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