SCAD

The School of Communication, Art, and Design

  • The Mission of the School of Communication, Art, and Design at Stranahan High School is to provide talented students with artistic education of the highest-quality while preparing them to become innovative thinkers in an increasingly competitive and technology-driven world. The School seeks to instill all students with professional knowledge, collaborative skills, and technical expertise for success as creators in the fields of Drama, Music, and Visual Arts

    The School of Communication, Art, and Design unites a variety of content experts to engage students in self-discovery while building on their strength as artists and performers in a non-traditional learning environment. Through an interdisciplinary approach, we prepare students to go on to college and pursue careers with industry-standard certifications representative of content mastery in the field of their choice. We promote creativity by allowing students to collaborate with peers from any number of our various magnet programs to achieve learning goals and enable them to be versatile as the move forward with their post-secondary endeavors after graduation.

    Our Core Values

    Equity and inclusivity.
    We understand the diversity as a strength and are committed to challenging prejudice and inequality within our school and in society at large.


    Artistic Excellence.
    We hold the belief that learning is centered in the process of inquiry, self-discovery, and creative expression. We offer our students the environment and tools they need to take risks, think critically, and work creatively within and across disciplines.

    Exploration.
    We encourage curiosity, divergent thinking, and multiple approaches to problem-solving. We seek to understand and play a part in the ongoing global evolution of the roles of creators and scholars.

    Creative Entrepreneurship.
    We prepare each student to have the necessary professional skills to transform aspirations and values into a creative practice that will serve as the foundation for a rewarding future.

  • 2-D Studio Art

    The purpose of this program is to prepare students for employment as artists and related workers, illustrators, and commercial designers.

    This program offers a sequence of courses that provides coherent and rigorous content aligned with challenging academic standards and the relevant technical knowledge and skills needed to prepare for further education and careers in the Arts.

    2D Studio Art 1. This year-long, entry level class promotes the enjoyment and appreciation of art as students experiment with the media and techniques used to create two-dimensional (2D) artworks, including drawing, painting, printmaking, collage, and more. Special Note: This course incorporates hands-on activities and consumption of art materials.

    PREREQUISITE: None

    2D Studio Art 2. This year-long intermediate-level class promotes the enjoyment and appreciation of art as students strengthen their use of media and techniques to create both teacher-assigned and self-directed two-dimensional (2D) artworks, which may include drawing, painting, printmaking, collage, and more. Special Note: This course incorporates hands-on activities and consumption of art materials

    PREREQUISITE: 2D Studio Art I

    Advanced Placement Studio Art. The AP Art and Design course framework is composed of course skills, big ideas, essential questions and enduring understandings, learning objectives, and essential knowledge. AP Art and Design skill categories delineate overarching understandings central to the study and practice of art and design. Each of the three skill categories consists of skills that encompass foundational to advanced learning over the span of the course. Students need to develop, practice, and apply these skills in a variety of contexts.

    The AP 2-D Art and Design course framework is made up of three big ideas.

    • Big Idea 1: Investigate materials, processes, and ideas.
    • Big Idea 2: Make art and design.
    • Big Idea 3: Present art and design.

    PREREQUISITE: Teacher approval

  • Institute of Creative Photography

    The purpose of this program is to prepare students for employment as photographers.

    This program offers a sequence of courses that provides coherent and rigorous content aligned with challenging academic standards and relevant technical knowledge and skills needed to prepare for further education and careers in the Arts, A/V Technology and Communication career cluster; provides technical skill proficiency, and includes competency-based applied learning that contributes to the academic knowledge, higher-order reasoning and problem-solving skills, work attitudes, general employability skills, technical skills, and occupation-specific skills, and knowledge of all aspects of the Arts, A/V Technology and Communication career cluster.

    2D Studio Art 1 

    This year-long, entry level class promotes the enjoyment and appreciation of art as students experiment with the media and techniques used to create two-dimensional (2D) artworks, including drawing, painting, printmaking, collage, and more. Special Note: This course incorporates hands-on activities and consumption of art materials.

    Creative Photography I

    Students explore the aesthetic foundations of art making using beginning photography techniques. This course may include, but is not limited to, black and white and color photography via digital media (including smart phone cameras) and/or traditional photography.

    Students become familiar with the basic mechanics of different cameras, including lens and shutter operation, compositional foundations, printing an image for display, and evaluating a successful photo or print. Student photographers may use a variety of media and materials, such as smart phone cameras, digital single-lens reflex cameras, digital darkroom, computer application, filters, and digital output. Craftsmanship and quality are reflected in the surface of the prints and the care of the materials. Photographers use an art criticism process to evaluate, explain, and measure artistic growth in personal or group works.

    PREREQUISITE: 2D Studio Art I

    Creative Photography II 

    Students experiment with a variety of photographic media and techniques, and make connections with historical and contemporary photographers to develop a focused body of work. This course may include, but is not limited to, researching the history of photography, making connections to contemporary and community photographers, critiquing with varied techniques, and experimenting with a variety of photographic media. Processes and techniques include, but are not limited to, mixed media, cyanotypes, medium format, photo collage, cross-processing, creative filters, night photography, macro, panoramic, and digital output via a variety of media.

    Craftsmanship and quality are reflected in the surface of the prints, care of the materials, attention to compositional conventions, and expression of ideas and feelings. Photographers use an art criticism process to evaluate, explain, and measure artistic growth in personal or group works. This course incorporates hands-on activities and consumption of art materials.

    PREREQUISITE: Creative Photography I

    Creative Photography III (Honors)

    Students lead a focused investigation of a subject matter from ideation to completion. Students select a theme, develop a concept, and prepare the work for public viewing, portfolio, distribution, and/or exhibit. This course may include, but is not limited to, research, collaboration, installation, history of photography, making connections to contemporary and community photographers, and critiquing with varied techniques. Processes, techniques, and media may include, but are not limited to, video, film, high speed photography, studio lighting, flash, long exposure, formal portraiture, large format, HDR, RAW processing, and digital output on a variety of media, including non-traditional materials.

    Craftsmanship and quality are reflected in the surface of the print, care of the materials, attention to compositional conventions, the display setting, and expression of ideas and feelings. Photographers use an art criticism process to evaluate, explain, and measure artistic growth in personal or group works. This course incorporates hands-on activities and consumption of art materials.

    PREREQUISITE: Creative Photography II

  • The Music Conservatory

    Instrumental Ensemble 1

    Students with little or no experience in an instrumental ensemble develop basic musicianship and ensemble performance skills through the study of basic, high-quality music in diverse styles. Student musicians focus on building foundational music techniques, music literacy, listening skills, and aesthetic awareness. Public performances may serve as a culmination of specific instructional goals. Students may be required to attend and/or participate in rehearsals and performances outside the school day to support, extend, and assess learning in the classroom. This course may also require students to obtain a musical instrument (e.g., borrow, rent, purchase) from an outside source.

    PREREQUISITE: None

    Instrumental Ensemble 2

    Students with previous instrumental ensemble experience continue building musicianship and performance skills through the study of high-quality music in diverse styles. Student musicians learn to self-assess and collaborate as they rehearse, perform, and study relevant musical styles and time periods. Public performances may serve as a culmination of specific instructional goals. Students may be required to attend and/or participate in rehearsals and performances outside the school day to support, extend, and assess learning in the classroom. This course may also require students to obtain a musical instrument (e.g., borrow, rent, purchase) from an outside source.

    PREREQUISITE: Instrumental Ensemble 1

    Instrumental Ensemble 3

    Students strengthen instrumental ensemble performance skills, music literacy, and analytical skills through the study of high-quality music in diverse styles. Student musicians learn to self-assess and collaborate as they rehearse, perform, and study relevant history and cultures. Public performances may serve as a culmination of specific instructional goals. Students may be required to attend and/or participate in rehearsals and performances outside the school day to support, extend, and assess learning in the classroom. This course may also require students to obtain a musical instrument (e.g., borrow, rent, purchase) from an outside source.

    PREREQUISITE: Instrumental Ensemble 2

    Instrumental Ensemble 4 HONORS

    Students with extensive instrumental ensemble experience refine their critical listening, music literacy, and ensemble skills through the study, rehearsal, and performance of high-quality, advanced literature. Students use reflection and problem-solving skills with increasing independence to improve their performance and musical expression. Public performances may serve as a culmination of specific instructional goals. Students may be required to attend and/or participate in rehearsals and performances outside the school day to support, extend, and assess learning in the classroom. This course may also require students to obtain a musical instrument (e.g., borrow, rent, purchase) from an outside source.

    PREREQUISITE: Instrumental Ensemble 3

  • Drama - Performance

    Instroduction to Drama

    Students explore various performance, technical, and administrative aspects of theatre. Students learn about basic characterization through physical activity, reading selected theatre literature, reading and writing theatrical reviews, and analysis of such tools as scripts, costuming, and theatrical makeup. Public performances may serve as a resource for specific instructional goals. Students may be expected to attend one or more performances outside the school day to support, extend, and assess learning in the classroom.

    PREREQUISITE: None

    Theatre 1

    This course is designed for students with little or no theatre experience, and promotes enjoyment and appreciation for all aspects of theatre. Classwork focuses on the exploration of theatre literature, performance, historical and cultural connections, and technical requirements. Improvisation, creative dramatics, and beginning scene work are used to introduce students to acting and character development. Incorporation of other art forms in theatre also helps students gain appreciation for other art forms, such as music, dance, and visual art.

    PREREQUISITE: Introduction to Drama

    Theatre 2

    This course is designed for students with a year of experience or more, and promotes enjoyment and appreciation for all aspects of theatre through opportunities to build significantly on existing skills. Classwork focuses on characterization, playwriting, and playwrights’ contributions to theatre; while improvisation, creative dramatics, and scene work are used to help students challenge and strengthen their acting skills and explore the technical aspect of scene work.

    PREREQUISITE: Theatre 1

    Theatre 3 Honors

    This course is designed for students with significant experience in theatre, and promotes depth of engagement and lifelong appreciation for theatre through a broad spectrum of teacher-assigned and self-directed study and performance. Students regularly reflect on aesthetics and issues related to and addressed through theatre, and create within various aspects of theatre in ways that are progressively more innovative. In keeping with the rigor expected in an accelerated setting, students assemble a portfolio that showcases a significant body of work representing personal vision and artistic growth over time; mastery of theatre skills and techniques in one or more areas; and evidence of significant oral and written analytical and problem-solving skills based on their structural, historical, and cultural knowledge.

    PREREQUISITE: Theatre 2

  • Electives correlate to identified pathways. Pursuing electives outside of your pathway depends on availability and instructor discretion (please see instructor for prerequisite details). Students must be a member of their magnet program's career and technical student organization (CTSO) and will be encouraged to participate in CTSO events.

    Magnet Distinction Requirements

    Students earning magnet distinction will have completed 3 pathway courses, earned one or more industry certifications, acquired at least 100 service hours (60 of which related to their program of study known as magnet service hours), completed their summer internship* (summer of junior year), completed and successfully presented senior year project, and maintained academic performance and course requirements consistent with magnet standards for their program of study.

    Students must meet all required program components for magnet distinction. If you have additional questions please contact your magnet coordinator.