New Tech FAQ

Is New Tech another program that will just phase out?

No, the New Tech Network has been in place for over ten years with 120 schools across the nation and that number is rapidly growing.


What does New Tech look like at DeKalb High School?

DeKalb New Tech is a school within a school model.  It is a small autonomous school that functions within the larger high school.  It is NOT a new a program with new standards, but rather a new school with the same Indiana Academic Standards as all other high schools.


Can I take honors courses at DeKalb New Tech?

Yes, DNT (DeKalb New Tech) students will have the opportunity to sign up for honors courses within the DNT structure.


Are AP courses available to students in DeKalb New Tech?

Yes, as students progress through high school, they will have the option to take AP courses that may be integrated into New Tech and ALSO AP courses that are not a part of New Tech.  They will “travel out” of New Tech to their AP class in the traditional school.


Can I be in Show Choir, Band, or other electives if I am a New Tech student?

Yes!  Students in New Tech have the same opportunities for electives as do traditional students.  As with traditional students, we will do our best to accommodate requested schedules, but cannot guarantee placement into every elective.


How many students will be able to be in DeKalb New Tech?

The goal is for 100-120 students to begin as freshmen in year one.  After that, approximately 100 students will be added each year so that after 4 years, there are 400-450 students in DeKalb New Tech.


What happens if too many students apply for DeKalb New Tech?

There may be a lottery put into place based on the number of students signing up for DNT, and their academic levels.


Will students in New Tech ever see other students in the traditional high school?

Students in DNT will be in classes along with traditional students during their elective classes outside of New Tech.  Students will also see traditional students in the hallway during passing periods and during lunch as they will be integrated into a lunch mod with traditional students.


Will the work in DeKalb New Tech be more rigorous or less rigorous than the traditional high school?

The intent of a New Tech school is not to increase or decrease rigor, but to provide different opportunities for students to understand and learn the content in a project based environment.

Will I get my own computer if I am in New Tech and can I take it home?

DeKalb New Tech students will receive their own laptop to use every day at school.  As freshmen, they will not be allowed to take it home.  The future intent is for students to earn the right to take their laptop home if their grades and behavior are in good standing.


What will my diploma look like compared to traditional students?

It is the same diploma; however, there will be a New Tech seal somewhere present on the document.


I am really not a fan of group work because there is sometimes a student in my group who does not pull their weight and my grade suffers.  If New Tech is a lot of group work, then is it for me?

Group work in New Tech is different than what students have been accustomed to.  Students will generally do group work, but be graded on individual performance.  One project does not determine the grade of the entire group.  Groups in New Tech also have the option of “voting” other group members out of their group if that student is not pulling his/her weight.  It is not possible for a student to fail his/her project because of another student not doing their work.


Can I participate in Vocational classes if I am in New Tech?

Yes, students will have the option in their Junior or Senior year to participate in 4-County Vocational as long as their grades and behavior are in good standing.


Does DeKalb New Tech cost more than the traditional high school?

We are working to make the course fees and textbook/laptop fees equitable between both schools.  There will not be a major difference in cost to do one or the other.


Do I get a locker if I am in DeKalb New Tech?

Yes, students in DNT will have the same size lockers as students in the traditional high school. 


Can I leave DNT at any time if I don’t like it?

We are asking students to make a 1 year commitment to DNT.  Most students will embrace the new model of learning immediately.  However, some students will need more time to adjust to the different style of learning.  For some students it takes longer than one or two months to adapt to a new pattern or cycle of learning.  If a student thinks DNT does not fit his/her style of learning, then after one year, the student may return to the traditional high school.


If a student chooses not to do New Tech their freshmen year, can they get in as a sophomore?

Mr. Toth and the New Tech staff are still developing the guidelines for transitioning into New Tech.  If a student applied to be in New Tech as a freshmen, but did not get accepted because of too many applicants, that student will have priority in his/her sophomore year over a student who did not apply in his/her freshmen year.  

Am I graded the same way in New Tech as in traditional school?

No, students in New Tech are graded on five different school wide learning outcomes - content literacy, oral communication and presentation, written communication, collaboration and teamwork, and work ethic and effort.  These five school wide learning outcomes are the basis and focus on which we score students on their assignments.

Will I be more or less prepared for college if I enroll in New Tech?

Our goal is that all New Tech students leave as much if not more prepared for college than traditional school students.  In fact, a recent report was just released indicating the success that New Tech students have had.

I am concerned with the double blocked classes being very long.  What are those classes like and do we get a break?

In the combined classes, the periods are twice as long as a normal class period.  However, remember that two classes are being taught in that time.  Also, most New Tech students would tell you that the time seems to "fly by" quicker than a 50 minute traditional class.  This is due to the active, hands on, project based approach within New Tech.  There is not a provided passing period during these classes; however, the atmosphere is structured so that if you need to go to your locker or the restroom you may do so almost anytime during the block.