Advanced Placement and Advanced Courses Information
Preparing Every Student for College
Advanced Placement (AP) and Advanced courses in Galena Park ISD are extremely rigorous and equivalent to an introductory college-level course. They are intended for students who have demonstrated both the highest level of academic achievement and commitment to hard work. Typically, successful AP students are task-oriented and proficient readers who are able to organize their time and who have parent/guardian support.
The students in AP/Advanced classes will be assigned several outside projects and research writing assignments over the course of the year. Teaching the students the writing style and research methods expected of college students is one of the major goals of the AP program.
Advanced courses are based on the following two important premises. The first is the expectation that all students can perform well at rigorous academic levels. This expectation should be reflected in the curriculum and instruction throughout the school, such that all students are consistently being challenged to expand their knowledge and skills to the next level. The second important premise of Advanced courses is the belief that we can prepare every student for higher intellectual engagement by starting the development of skills and acquisition of knowledge as early as possible. Addressed effectively, the middle and high school years can provide a powerful opportunity to help all students acquire the knowledge, concepts, and skills needed to engage in a higher level of learning.
AP is a rigorous academic program built on the commitment, passion, and hard work of students and educators from both secondary schools and higher education. AP courses can help students acquire the skills and habits they will need to be successful in college. Students in AP courses will improve their writing skills, sharpen their problem-solving abilities, and develop time management skills, discipline, and study habits. In AP classrooms, the focus is not on memorizing facts and figures; instead, students engage in intense discussions, solve problems collaboratively, and learn to write clearly and persuasively.
Enrollment Criteria for Advanced and AP Classes
Masters scores on STAAR will be used to place incoming 6th graders or students not currently in an Advanced course. Masters scores in reading will be used to place students in Advanced ELA and Advanced Social Studies. Masters scores in math will be used to place students in Advanced math. Masters scores in reading and math will be used to place students in Advanced science.
Please be aware that GPISD abides by the open enrollment policy. However, in order to be eligible to open enroll in an Advanced or AP course, a student must pass STAAR. A student may enroll in an Advanced or AP course with a parent's request as long as he/she has passed STAAR and STAAR EOC, and has earned a passing grade in the previous course.
Students with an 80 or above average at the end of the 3rd nine-week grading period who are currently in an Advanced course will automatically be placed in the next Advanced course of that subject (the grade is an average of the three nine weeks).
Standards and Expectations for Advanced/AP Courses
- All Advanced/AP students are expected to have scored at the "Meets" or "Masters" performance level on the prior STAAR/EOC test in their PreAP/AP content area.
- Advanced courses are college-prep courses designed to prepare students to enter AP and/or Dual Credit courses and are graded accordingly.
- High school credit Advanced/AP courses taken during middle school will be on the student's high school transcript.
- AP courses are college-level courses. One of the purposes of the Advanced/AP course work is to help students master the skills required for success in college.
- High School Advanced/AP courses will receive weighted grade points upon successful completion of each semester.
- Advanced/AP courses are designed to provide students a more challenging curriculum as well as more opportunities for inquiry and research.
A student and his/her parent may request removal from an Advanced/AP class no later than the end of the progress report date of the second grading period as long as: the student does not have any zeroes in the course, the student attended tutorials, the teacher has made parent contact, and the teacher agrees that the student is struggling. If a student is removed from an Advanced/AP course, their transfer grade will be provided to the new teacher. In addition, schedule changes are also contingent upon the availability of space in an equivalent content area classroom, and may result in the student's schedule being rearranged.
Middle School Algebra I Policy
For a middle school student to receive high school credit for Algebra I, he or she must meet the following criteria: 70% or higher final average and passing of the Algebra I End of Course (EOC) examination. Otherwise, the student shall be required to retake Algebra I in grade 9 in order to receive credit. If the middle school student fails the first semester of Algebra I, the student will be placed in 8th grade math for the second semester and will retake Algebra I in the 9th grade.
Late Work Policy:
Any assignment that is not turned in on the due date will be assessed a 10-point penalty, per day, for up to five days. After that time, any assignment may be turned in prior to the last week of the marking period for a maximum grade of 50%.
Advanced Middle School grading categories are 50% major and 50% daily. Teachers may also use 50% major, 40% daily, and 10% homework.
Advanced High School grading categories are 60% major and 40% daily. Teachers may also use 60% major, 30% daily, and 10% homework.
AP High School grading categories are 70% major and 30% daily. Teachers may also use 70% major, 20% daily, and 10% homework.
Homework assignments cannot account for more than 10% of the daily category.