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    In 9th and 10th grade core classes, an honors designation is available to students in Math, Science, Language Arts and Social Studies.  In 11th and 12th grade, Advanced Placement classes are offered in the following areas:  Art, Computer Science, Language Arts, Calculus, Statistics, Environmental Science, US History, Japanese and Spanish.  Advanced Placement (AP) classes are approved by the College Board and students may earn college credit by scoring three (3) or better on the subject area AP Test in the spring.

    Honors designation involves academic work that is rigorous and requires application of higher-lever “thinking skills” above and beyond standard content acquisition.  Students who earn honors exhibit superior performance in all aspects with work that exemplifies the highest quality of performance.  Students engage in rigorous learning experiences.  Rigor is defined as complex, provocative, and personally or emotionally challenging material.  Student who earn honors demonstrate curiosity and intellectual interest beyond “merely getting a grade.”

    All students engage with topics by developing Habits of Mind.  Students pursuing an honors designation engage with the Habits of Mind at a deeper, more rigorous level therefore earning an “H” on the transcript and an increase in grade point.  All students are taught to question: 

    • Viewpoint
      From whose viewpoint are we seeing, reading or hearing?  From what angle or perspective?

    • Evidence
      How do we know what we know?  What is the evidence and how reliable is it?

    • Relevance
      What does it matter?  What does it all mean?  So what?

    • Connections
      How are things, events or people connected to each other?  What is the cause?  What is the effect?  How do they “fit” together?

    • Supposition
      What if…?  Could things be otherwise?  What are or were the alternatives?

    Academic rigor is defined as helping students develop the capacity to understand content that is complex, ambiguous, provocative, and personally and emotionally challenging. 

    • Complex:  Students grapple with content that has overlapping and interacting ideas such as cellular respiration, the structure of ecosystems or the causes of depressions or recessions.

    • Provocative:  Students engage with concepts that are dilemmas where the student engages in problem solving, inquiry, and taking positions (e.g. human cloning, abortion, death penalty).

    • Ambiguous:  Students examine poetry, primary documents and statistics that are packed with multiple meanings that must be examined and sorted into patterns of significance.

    • Emotionally or Personally Challenging:  Students look at content that challenges how they think the world works.