Counselor Solutions Group Update


More Clarification on English and Math Course Scheduling and Prerequisites! IMPORTANT UPDATE!

The following update information was sent yesterday to help inform you and make you aware of the prerequisite requirements for English and Math courses.

Several have had some great questions and are wondering what options there are and what other schools are doing to remedy the issues caused by students being concurrently scheduled as discussed below.

Here are a few updated items we have been able to find to keep in mind as you navigate what to do for your students...

English Course Clarification...

During the 84th Texas Legislature in spring of 2015, it was voted into law that students on the Foundation High School Program must successfully complete English I, II, and III prior to enrolling in the advanced English course. This was put into the Texas Education Code (TEC) in 2015 and became effective with the 2015-2016 school year. This past spring, the State Board of Education (SBOE) amended the rules in the Texas Administrative Code (TAC) to align to what the legislature voted into law in 2015. This would apply to any and all of the advanced English courses, not just English IV.

Keep in mind that the district has flexibility in the instructional arrangement of courses offered to students, however the law is clear that students must successfully complete English I, II, and III before enrolling in English IV (or the advanced course being substituted for English IV). Students may continue to take English I and II or English II and III concurrently, however the law prohibits concurrent enrollment in English III and IV for students on the FHSP.

Math Course Clarification...see bold statements below...

  • For documentation, someone at the district needs to retain documentation, some suggestions have been the scope and sequence that shows 7th and 8th TEKS are taught in the 7th grade (etc.)
  • Possibly documenting on the PGP for the student that the 8th TEKS have been covered, etc.
  • It is important to know what way the TEKS are being covered for each grade level/student for accelerated courses, etc. As turnover happens at the district/campus, ensuring that skipping TEKS is avoided.

District Leaders and Counselors..

This year, we were made aware of the requirement that English IV could not be taken until SUCCESSFUL completion of English I, II, III. Therefore, a student could not be concurrently enrolled in another English while taking English IV.

Below is information regarding math courses and prerequisites that we wanted to be sure you are aware of so you can make appropriate changes for students as needed.

This email is in response to the recent math listserv correspondence from TEA. The high school math TEKS that were implemented in 2015-2016 have prerequisites changes (in the TEKS themselves) that many did not know to check. As a result we have students who took or who are taking courses without the required prerequisites. Please see the email below to begin taking steps to respond to these changes.

For 2015-2016 students who....

  • took Algebra I without successfully completing the 8th grade math curriculum, or
  • took a high school course without successfully completing the required prerequisite(s).

It's up to the district to decide how to remediate the situation. If the district or campus is audited, then a student's credits could be invalidated.

-A Credit-By-Exam could be administered to document mastery of the 8th TEKS...this is one option.

-TEKS for the missed curriculum could be covered now.

For 2016-2017 students who...

  • are taking Algebra I without successfully completing the 8th grade math curriculum, or
  • are taking any high school math course without having successfully completed the required prerequisite(s).

Make changes now and ...

  • have teachers teach that class of students a different math course that can be taken with the prerequisites the students have, or
  • move students out of the class to a class that helps them earn the prerequisite credits they need.
  • Credit by exam could be used to demonstrate proficiency of the prerequisite TEKS
  • Some districts are moving (for example) 8th grade TEKS to be taught in 1st semester and Algebra I TEKS to be taught in Spring.

Middle Schools: For students planning to take Algebra I in 8th Grade...

  • In 6th grade consider having these students complete a compacted curriculum of 6th and 7th grade TEKS, and then
  • In 7th grade have these students complete the 8th grade TEKS.

When building your class schedule for future years, please be mindful of the prerequisites in the math TEKS and realize prerequisites must be successfully completed prior to taking the course.

Students can double up high school courses to catch up if needed, but please make note of the prerequisites in the math TEKS as you make these decisions.

Any combination of the courses listed below in orange can be taken concurrently.

  • geometry
  • math models
  • algebraic reasoning
  • statistics
  • algebra II
  • mathematical applications in agriculture, food, and natural resources
  • digital electronics
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