The Northwest Lehigh School Board discussed the status of the Common Core math curriculum in its middle school. Based on the success of a high performance algebra class, another class was added to offer the course to double the amount of students.
Students were placed in the course based on their past class and grade performance as well as their results on a placement test, according to Laurie Hoppes, the middle school principal who addressed the school board about the new math programs.
The addition of another algebra course and the decisions about which students would be placed in the classes happened just recently. Scores from state tests taken last spring were not made available until this month and the middle school administrators needed those scores to help them evaluate each student’s eligibility.
Some parents at the school board meeting suggested that the teachers and staff keep parents more aware of their decision processes so that they could more aptly help their children perform their best and have access to the highest level courses.
Northwestern Lehigh School district had to employ Common Core Standards after the Pennsylvania State Board adopted them in July 2010, according to the PA Department of Education website.
Math placements will not affect other classes, according to Hoppes. Students in the algebra classes will be dispersed throughout other language arts and social studies courses to maintain a heterogeneous classroom setting.