TJ Summer Honors Weighting
FCPS currently gives honors weight (+0.5) for Geometry, but not for other for-credit courses taught at Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology (TJ) summer school, even though all these courses received honors weight when taken during the school year. Please sign this petition to urge FCPS and the Fairfax County School Board to provide honors weight, retroactively, for all for-credit courses taken at TJ summer school. Background: • Consistent with FCPS policy of weighting Honors Geometry classes taken during the school year, FCPS students taking Geometry over the summer receive honors weight (+0.5) in computing their weighted grade point average. • TJHSST offers seven for-credit courses during summer school, http://www.fcps.edu/is/summer/onlinecodes.shtml, all of which are required to graduate, pursuant to FCPS Regulation 3355: http://tinyurl.com/9jf3upx • The FCPS website states that: “students at [TJ] receive a weighting of 0.5 for all required math, science, English and social studies courses.” Source: http://tinyurl.com/9y8ovee Accordingly, TJ summer school courses should be given honors weight. • FCPS’ website also states that: “the additional weighting of honors courses is retroactive for all courses that appear on a student's high school transcript.” Accordingly, weighting for TJ summer school courses should be retroactive. • Nevertheless, FCPS has not given honors weight to other TJ summer school courses in computing the weighted GPAs of TJ students. Rationale: • FCPS Regulation 3355 and TJ policies mandate that TJ students take classes beyond those required to graduate with an Advanced Diploma from a base high school, including: (a) 9th grade technology; (b) computer science; (c) AP Calculus AB or AP Calculus BC; (d) a specialized science and technology research lab, and (e) multiple lab prerequisite courses, which often have their own prerequisites (e.g. Chemistry, AP Chemistry; Organic Chemistry with Instrumental Analysis). Sources: http://tinyurl.com/8e5lmq5; http://tinyurl.com/9h53w7s • Because of the unique academic graduation requirements of this Governor’s school, summer school a necessary option for most TJ students. • In May 2012, the TJ PTSA unanimously approved a resolution supporting honors weight to honors classes taken during TJ’s summer school. Teachers, parents, and students agree that the summer courses are as or more rigorous than the regular year honors course. • FCPS currently offers online honors courses in English 9, English 10, English 11, English 12, Algebra 1, Algebra II, Biology, Chemistry, VA and US Government, VA and US History, World History and Geography 1, and World History and Geography II. Source: http://www.fcps.edu/is/onlinecampus/catalog.shtml These honors online courses could be offered during the summer to base high school students, to give them opportunities, similar to TJ students, to take weighted honors courses during the summer. • FCPS could have approved all TJ summer school courses for honors weighting, but it only approved honors weighting for Honors Geometry. • Instead, FCPS adopted Regulation 3202.8 on September 10, 2012. Under FCPS Regulation 3202.8, http://tinyurl.com/bpnpx98, TJ must submit paperwork and obtain the approval of a committee of middle and high school principals, teachers, counselors, administrators and community members in order for other TJ summer school classes to receive honors weight. • It is not justifiable that courses that have already been designated as “Honors” be required to go through this bureaucratic committee to be weighted. • FCPS’ actions unjustifiably violate its own policies and have been harmful and punitive to TJ students. • This recommendation is supported by: o TJ Parent Teacher Student Association o TJ Student Government Association o FAIRGRADE o Fairfax County Association for the Gifted
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THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT!