Early College Program

9th & 10th Grade Winter Newsletter

End of First Semester is Quickly Approaching!

Happy Holidays! As we head into another busy season, it is important to stay mindful of how quickly the first semester of the school year is coming to a close. FSCJ's semester ended Dec. 12 and DCPS's semester ends soon after students return from the holidays (Jan. 15). This is a critical time of year for students to stay on top of their assignments and ace their finals. This newsletter is chocked full of information regarding upcoming events and other information regarding the closing of our semester. If you have any questions regarding this information, please email me or the contact person listed in the article.

Here's to a great semester closing! - Dr. Keefe

Grade Reports, Reports Cards, and Academic Histories

Parents, we strongly encourage you log into OnCourse to check grades and assignments! Many classes have final projects or exams pending. The more you know, the more you can help your student ace this semester!

Report cards will be sent home with students on January 26. Remember, the first 9-weeks grade and second 9-weeks grade will be averaged to post a semester grade to the student's Academic History. These grades will impact the student's GPA. A student must maintain a 3.0+ high school GPA and a 2.0+ college GPA to enroll/remain enrolled in FSCJ courses.

Early College Program Continuation Criteria

Early College is a rigorous high school acceleration program designed to support students earning their high school diploma and AA degree. Students are expected to meet certain criteria each semester/year due to the potential impact on high school transcripts, college transcripts, and college financial aid. Academic Conferences are held individually with students and parents throughout the program to discuss student progress. Classroom lessons and workshops are provided by the Early College School Counselor and FSCJ Coordinator to cover requirements and additional information. Parent Nights are hosted throughout the year to share information.

The following sections outline Early College Continuation Criteria. This information is also covered in the enclosed “Early College Course Progression, Continuation Criteria , & Conferences” (yellow paper).

24 Credits & 60 Credit Hours

Duval County Public School (DCPS) students are required to earn credits in specific areas to receive their high school diploma. Students attempting to earn an AA degree while in high school, must earn 60 college credit hours in specific areas. See the enclosed “Early College Course Progression, Continuation Criteria, and Conferences” (yellow paper) to review the required credits and credit hours.

High School Grade Point Average

Students begin earning their cumulative grade point average (GPA) on the first day of 9th grade or the first day of Algebra I. Every class a student completes is added to their transcript and to their cumulative GPA. This includes REL, FLVS, and FSCJ classes. The cumulative GPA is updated at the end of each DCPS semester (January, June, and August). Students participating in the Early College Program must maintain a cumulative unweighted high school GPA of 3.0 or higher to continue moving forward in the program.

FSCJ Grade Point Average

Students begin earning their college GPA on the first day of the SLS1103 class. Only FSCJ classes are included in the college transcript and FSCJ GPA. Students participating in the Early College Program must earn and maintain an FSCJ GPA of 2.0 or higher.

W/D/F Rule

Students may not earn any combination of Ds, Fs, or Withdrawals in college classes within one semester.


Students participating in the Early College program must pass the Algebra I EOC and 10th grade Florida State Reading Assessment to graduate. They must also earn College Readiness scores to move into college level classes beyond SLS1103. Score information is on the next page under “Know Your Scores”.

Virtual Instruction Requirement

Students’ graduation requirements include completing at least one full-length course on-line. There are many options to complete online courses including Florida Virtual School (www.flvs.net) and online courses at FSCJ. Students are encouraged to complete this requirement before the end of 10th grade.

FSCJ Classes: The Next Step

Most of the students in the Early College Program will notice a change in their class schedule next semester. This is because they are either moving into a dual enrollment class, they have finished a dual enrollment class, or both!

A student who is currently enrolled in...

  • ENC1101 - this course will be completed at the end of the semester. Students who complete this course will move to Creative Writing for second semester.
  • AMH2010 - this course will be completed at the end of the semester. Students who qualify for AMH2020 will move to this class.
  • Pre-calculus - Students who qualify for a college-level math class will move to MAT1033.
  • Creative Writing - Students who qualify will move to ENC1101.
  • SLS1103 - this course will be completed at the end of the semester. Students will move to US Government (if in 9th grade) or ENC1101 & AMH2020 (if in 10th grade and qualify).
  • US Government - this course will be completed at the end of the semester. Students who have a cumulative high school GPA of 3.0+ will move to SLS1103.

If a student does not meet eligibility requirements for dual enrollment at the end of this semester, the faculty and staff will continue to support the student's academic efforts. Students will be provided opportunities to improve their GPA and/or achieve college-readiness scores through the PERT, ACT, and SAT. All of our students are encouraged to participate in after-school tutoring sessions and Saturday School test prep sessions, as scheduled.

What happens if a student does not meet Continuation Criteria?

The most important aspect of high school is earning your high school diploma. It is also important to earn your diploma in a way that is best for you. Some classes in the Early College program are intense, can impact high school and college transcripts, and even effect eligibility for financial aid in the future! Therefore, students must meet certain criteria in order to continue moving forward in the program.

If a student does not meet the criteria to continue, they are encouraged to continue to strive for dual enrollment eligibility. In other words, keep working to meet the criteria, so you can take college credit classes. In some cases, students may have to return from FSCJ to REL for classes for the remainder of the year or return to their neighborhood school to finish high school.

Students must meet the Continuation Criteria described above throughout the program. Students must also meet the following deadlines:

  • Earn college-readiness scores by 10th grade end of December
  • Complete the SLS1103 course by the end of Semester 1, 10th grade
  • Complete at least three college classes by the end of 10th grade (SLS1103, ENC1101, AMH2020)

Know the Scores! College-Readiness Scores

In an effort to ensure students successfully progress in the Early College program, and are prepared to thrive in the setting of their choice after high school, they are required to demonstrate academic abilities through course work & standardized testing. Students must earn eligibility scores in reading, math, and writing on standardized tests. They may use scores from ACT, SAT, or PERT. Students can "mix-n-match" scores from these tests in order to meet dual enrollment eligibility criteria.

College Ready/Post-secondary Scores

  • PERT: Reading - 106, Math - 114, Writing - 103
  • ACT: Reading - 19, Math 19, English 17
  • SAT: Reading 440, Math 440

Students must earn the appropriate scores in Reading and Writing to enroll in any FSCJ courses after completing SLS1103. They must also earn the appropriate score in Math to enroll in math classes and to take more than 12-credit hours (three classes). Students take the PERT at the end of 9th grade. PERT Re-takes are scheduled as needed and available for students in 10th grade. The PERT test is offered at Lee High School for free. For more information about the PERT and access to a study guide, please check out http://www.fldoe.org/fcs/pert.asp. Students may also take the ACT or SAT by signing up online (www.ACTstudent.org or www.CollegeBoard.org). There are fees associated with ACT and SAT.

Spring Academic Conferences

REL students and parents are invited to participate in Spring Academic Conferences with their school counselor. This conference is often referred to as a “Credit Check”. The student and counselor will discuss credits earned, courses needed, GPA, testing requirements, and your plans for the future during this conference. This is also a great time to get your questions answered about the Early College program. Parents are invited to participate in this conference in person or by phone. Invitations for Spring Academic Conferences are mailed home in January.

Parent-Teacher Conferences

Parents may also want to participate in a Parent-Teacher Conference. Conferences for 9th grade students are set up by Ms. Bolman; 10th grade by Ms. Waynick. Call the school for more information 381-3930.

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