Business Information Management Course
Magnolia High School has been a testing center for Certiport® since 2003 when Diane Murray, teacher at MHS, received a grant from the Magnolia Education Foundation to purchase the first training software used to help prepare students to earn these valuable industry certifications. From 2003 – 2009 students earning the certifications were enrolled in the second level Business Computer Information Systems course (BCIS II). Because few students have room in their schedule to take the second level course, the decision was made to incorporate the skills needed to master the certification exam into what is now called Business Information Management (BIM).
The business teachers at MHS made some significant changes in order to receive these certification results. In the past, students preparing for certification worked ahead of other students, doing “extra work” in order to prepare for the exam. This year, the bar was raised for ALL students by incorporating the more difficult material into the present curriculum. MHS students proved the theory that students will rise to the expectation level if given the chance to do so.
Although it was the students who earned the certifications, it was not without the tireless effort of the business teachers, especially Susan Mathews, team lead on the curriculum unit for Excel. A plan for success started in the summer months when Mrs. Mathews and Mrs. Murray upgraded their own credentials, earning the 2013 MOS certifications.
The teaching team has faced many obstacles as all members of the team wear multiple hats with varied other responsibilities. Erika Ritter is the head coach for the MHS Lady Bulldog basketball team in addition to her business department teaching schedule. Isaiah Agson, is a new member of the staff at MHS, the offensive coordinator for the MHS football team, and has two new preps, BIM and Business Law. Susan Mathews is the UIL Academic Campus Coordinator, UIL Accounting Coach, and Business Professionals of America Advisor. Diane Murray is the Business Department Chair, Campus Career and Technical Education Coordinator, UIL Computer Applications Coach, Business Professionals of America Advisor, a member of the Campus Improvement Committee, and has a new prep this year, Web Technologies.
Computer Science teacher Joel Mellen has put MHS back on the map in terms of being competitive in Computer Science. He has high expectations for this year’s Computer Science team as they are consistently scoring higher than several previous state qualifying schools. Susan Mathews leads the UIL accounting students, not only adding points at every competition, but advancing to state for the past eight years, winning a state championship in one of those years, and having the top student in accounting this past school year. Diane Murray leads the UIL computer applications team, adding points at every competition, advancing to the regional level each year, with plans to advance to the state level this year. Erika Ritter’s Lady Bulldogs have earned multiple District Championships and hoping for a repeat this season. MHS chapter of Business Professionals of America, with the support of Mrs. Mathews and Mrs. Murray are hoping to add to the number of members advancing to the state and national level as they prepare to begin competition in January. For a department of only five people, the awards and accolades earned each year by the students under the direction of this group of teachers is noteworthy.
Career and Technology Education
Magnolia ISD, through Career and Technical Education leadership by Dr. Matt Clark, CTE director has made a huge investment in the future of the students. The purchase of training software, the present license with Certiport, coupled with the support of caring, qualified teachers is resulting in the graduation of students with skills they need to be successful in the workplace. With the support of our teachers and administration, the Business Department at MHS is looking forward to a year of student success and achievement. Our goal is to have as many students certify in Access, Word and PowerPoint as did in Excel. What an exciting year at MHS, where each student is valuable, complete and loved.