Read Microsoft Word - 6th Grade Parent Letter in March 2008.doc text version

New Placement Process and Criteria for 7th Grade Math ­ Effective For the 2008/09 School Year For the past year the Newport-Mesa Unified School District Math Curriculum Committee has worked to expand the District's math curricular offerings and the process for placing students in the courses most appropriate to their math development. Over the years the middle and high schools have independently developed local criteria for student placement in math courses that have produced inconsistencies between sites. The math curriculum approved by the Board in the spring of 2007 contains consistent district-wide criteria for math placement, and an effort has been underway over the past twelve months to implement those criteria. Newport-Mesa Unified School District is highly committed to helping students be successful in each of their classes. An important part of our commitment to student success is ensuring that students are taking the most appropriate math course available at each grade level. The Math Curriculum Committee determined that the first important group to which these consistent criteria should be applied should be the 2008 fall semester 7th grade students. To accommodate all students we will offer three math courses in every school for 7th grade students: Pre-Algebra, which is (a) based on the California 7th grade math standards, and (b) the expected course for most 7th grade students, and (c) designed to prepare students for the Algebra curriculum (both a state and district high school graduation requirement). Algebra 1, which is (a) based on the California Algebra I math standards, and (b) the traditional one-year high school Algebra curriculum that will be available to 7th grade students who demonstrate advanced mathematical abilities based on several criteria, and (c) designed to prepare students for a rigorous and accelerated math pathway that leads to enrollment in Advanced Placement math courses, such as AP Calculus, by the 11th grade. Math Intervention, which is (a) based on California Mathematics Framework 2006 (appendix E), and (b) for students who demonstrate a need for specific intervention to master the math skills necessary for success in Algebra. In order to determine which math course is most appropriate in 7th grade for your student, we will be using multiple standards-based assessments, including: (a) the current district developed benchmark Grade 6 tests given in all 6th grade classrooms three times throughout the year, and (b) a new, district developed, standards-based Math Placement test that will be given in the 6th grade classrooms at the end of May, and (c) the California Standards Test (CST) in Mathematics given early in May to all 6th grade public school students in California. Based on the scores of the multiple standards based assessments noted above, your incoming 7th grade student will be placed in the most appropriate math course. To assist parents with additional information, we have developed a list of Frequently Asked Questions about the new process that will be mailed with a letter explaining the above information to all current 6th grade parents. "Who should take the 6th grade math placement test?" All Grade 6 students will take the placement test unless the teacher believes, and the parent agrees, that a Grade 6 student would clearly not benefit from taking the test. "When will the Placement Test be given?" The testing window for elementary/middle schools to administer the Math Placement Test in their 6th grade classrooms is from May 27 to May 30, 2008.

"What are the test details?" The Math Placement Test is a challenging 45-minute, 45-question, non-calculator, multiple-choice test. Students will be given Scantron forms to mark their answers. Approximately 90% of the test covers the 6th grade CA state math standards and 10% covers the 5th grade CA math standards. "Who scores the test and how/when are the elementary/middle schools notified of their students' results?" N-MUSD Secondary Math Resource Specialist Connie Wadsley will score the Math Placement tests. After the results of the 3rd math benchmark test are known in early June, she will send to all elementary school principals a list of student Math Placement Test results and Math Benchmark Test results, as well as tentative Grade 7 math course placements. Elementary/Middle school principals will receive via district mail, no later than June 16, 2008, a letter for every sixth grade student. Each letter will be included with every Grade 6 student report card, and the letter will indicate the students' test results and recommended placement in a Grade 7 math course. "How does a student qualify to enroll in Algebra I as a 7th grader?" First, students must meet at least 2 of the following 3 criteria: (a) score 80% or greater on the district-developed Grade 6 benchmark tests that are currently given in all 6th grade classrooms three times throughout the year, and/or (b) earn 27 or higher on the new district-developed, standards-based Math Placement test that will be given to all 6th grade students at the end of May, and/or (c) score advanced on the California Standards Test (CST) in Mathematics, which is given early in May to all 6th grade students in California. Second, when a student has met two of the three criteria above, the student must then achieve a qualifying score on the district Pre-Algebra final exam, which covers both readiness to take Algebra and the Grade 7 Math standards. The Pre-Algebra Final Exam will be offered in the late summer to determine if a student qualifies to take Algebra I as a seventh grader. Middle school academic advisors will contact the parents of all incoming seventh grade students who qualify to take the N-MUSD Pre-Algebra Final Exam with the time and place details for the test administration. "What should take place if a parent believes that placement in an accelerated course, for which a child qualifies, is not in the best interest of the child?" Parents have the option of placing their child in a less accelerated course than the child qualifies. For example, the parent of an incoming 7th grader who qualifies to take Algebra I may prefer that his/her child enroll in Pre-Algebra instead. Parents should contact their child's Middle School to inform the school of the decision to enroll in a less accelerated math course. "What should take place if a teacher believes that placement in an accelerated course, for which a child qualifies, is not in the best interest of the child?" Sixth grade teachers are encouraged to discuss their concerns with parents regarding children that may not have demonstrated readiness to be successful in an accelerated math course environment (poor work habits, behavior and/or maturity issues, etc.). Parents should be aware that students enrolled in 7th grade Algebra 1 must maintain a "B" average throughout the first trimester/quarter or they will be transferred to the Pre-Algebra course. At the beginning of the school year, parents of accelerated 7th grade math students will be required to sign a letter indicating that they understand the district policy regarding the "B" average requirement. Parents who want to have their child enrolled in a less accelerated math course should contact their child's Middle School to inform the school of the decision, and all parents are encouraged to carefully monitor their student's progress in the 7th grade math class. "Who do I contact if I have any other questions?" Feel free to contact Connie Wadsley, N-MUSD Secondary Math Resource Specialist at (949) 515-6524 or [email protected].us with any questions.

Information

Microsoft Word - 6th Grade Parent Letter in March 2008.doc

2 pages

Report File (DMCA)

Our content is added by our users. We aim to remove reported files within 1 working day. Please use this link to notify us:

Report this file as copyright or inappropriate

334872


You might also be interested in

BETA
ALGEBRA READINESS TEST
Mathematics, Grade 7 - Approved Listing
Chemistry Placement Test (CPT)
r79559_Eng Per