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Mountain View-Los Altos Union HSD |  E  6152  Instruction

9th Grade Mathematics Course Placement   

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Math Placement Protocol - Grade 8 to 9

Rising 9th graders choose their classes based on the recommended sequence of courses listed below:

Math Pathways

1. A student completing Math 8 or Math 8 CC8 in 8th grade will sign up for Algebra I, or Algebra Enhanced paired with Math Lab in 9th grade.

2. A student completing Math 8.1 or Algebra CC8 in 8th grade will sign up for Geometry or Geometry H in 9th grade.

3. A student completing Math 8.2 or Geometry Honors in 8th grade will sign up for Algebra II or Algebra IIH in 9th grade.

Placement Protocol

Placement in appropriate mathematics courses is critically important for a student during his or her middle and high school years. A student's 9th grade math course placement is a crucial crossroad for his or her future educational success. Misplacement in the sequence of mathematics courses creates a number of barriers and results in students being less competitive for college admissions, including admissions at the California State University and University of California.

1. During course selection in February, 8th grade students pick their 9th grade math class based on the above pathways chart.

2. Students may self-select into Honors, if they feel that they are prepared for the rigor of a HS honors class. Historically, students who earn a grade of ‘B' or better in an accelerated 8th grade math class are likely to do well in a high school honors class.

3. Students' math placement is subject to review and adjustment based on the following criteria:

A. Students who earn a C or better in their 8th grade math course, will be automatically advanced to the next course in the sequence as indicated on the Math Pathways chart.

B. Students who earn a minimum score on an objective placement test adopted by the district, are automatically advanced to the next course in the high school math sequence, regardless of the grade earned in the 8th grade course.

Note: Teacher recommendation is only used if the teacher advocates for acceleration when the objective criteria listed in A & B above are not met.

Sequence of Events

1. During the months of February and March, counselors meet with middle school students and staff to discuss transition to high school and explain the placement process. Counselors emphasize the importance of meeting eligibility criteria to qualify for placement in geometry or higher in the 9th grade.

The Math Placement protocol and procedure will be explained in detail and a written copy will be given to every student. A copy of this protocol is also included in the course selection handbook.

2. High School and district administrators meet with middle school parents to discuss the transition process and to emphasize the importance of completing four years of college prep math in high school, with the goal of completing calculus. This will include discussion of various pathways for acceleration.

3. Middle school students select their courses online in February. Students select their math course based on the Pathway Chart above. Students' course selections are monitored by Ed Services based on objective data outlined in the Placement Protocol. Corrections to students' schedules are made at the school site. Preliminary student course selections are mailed home in March and further adjustments to math courses can be made by June per parent request, if necessary. Middle school teacher recommendations are ONLY taken into consideration when this recommendation would result in accelerating a student's placement.

4. During the summer, up until a week prior to the opening of school, and again one week after school opens in fall Ed Services verifies placement in math courses, notifies high school administrators and requests that high school principals take immediate steps to contact families of misplaced students, and ensure that students are placed in the appropriate math course per protocol. 8th grade SBAC scores may be used to validate placement, when available.

Recourse for parents who seek a change in math placement

Upon receiving confirmation of final student schedules, parents may contact their students' counselor or a site administrator to submit a request for review of student placement and/or a change in placement. Changes to math courses must be requested prior to the first day of school.


version: September 17, 2018 Mountain View, California