Alabama High School Graduation Requirements icon

Alabama High School Graduation Requirements



Appendix A

Alabama High School Graduation Requirements

(Alabama Administrative Code 290-3-1-02(8)(a) (b) and (c))


1. COURSE REQUIREMENTS

The Alabama courses of study shall be followed in determining minimum required content in each discipline. Students seeking the Alabama High School Diploma with Advanced Academic Endorsement shall complete advanced level work in the core curriculum. Students seeking the Alternate Adult High School Diploma shall complete the prescribed credits for the Alabama High School Diploma and pass the test of General Education Development (GED).

COURSE REQUIREMENTS

Alabama

High School Diploma

Credits

Alabama High

School Diploma

with Advanced

Academic Endorsement

Credits

Alternate

Adult High School

Diploma

Credits

^ ENGLISH LANGUAGE ARTS

4

4

4

Four credits to include the equivalent of:

English 9

English 10

English 11

English 12


1

1

1

1


1

1

1

1


1

1

1

1

MATHEMATICS

4

4

4

Four credits to include the equivalent of:

Algebra I

Geometry

Algebra II with Trigonometry

Mathematics Elective(s)


1

1


2


1

1

1

1


1

1


2

SCIENCE

4

4

4

Four credits to include the equivalent of:

Biology

A physical science

Science Electives


1

1

2


1

1

2


1

1

2

^ SOCIAL STUDIES*

4

4

4

Four credits to include the equivalent of:

Grade 9 Social Studies

Grade 10 Social Studies

Grade 11 Social Studies

Grade 12 Social Studies


1

1

1

1


1

1

1

1


1

1

1

1

^ PHYSICAL EDUCATION

1

1

1

HEALTH EDUCATION

0.5

0.5

0.5

^ ARTS EDUCATION

0.5

0.5

0.5

COMPUTER APPLICATIONS**

0.5

0.5

0.5

^ FOREIGN LANGUAGE***




2




ELECTIVES

5.5

3.5

5.5

Local boards shall offer foreign languages, fine arts, physical education, wellness education, career/technical education, and driver education as electives.

^ TOTAL CREDITS

24

24

24


* All four required credits in Social Studies shall comply with the current Alabama Course of Study.

** May be waived if competencies outlined in the computer applications course are demonstrated to qualified staff in the local school system. The designated one-half credit shall then be added to the electives credits, making a total of six electives credits for the Alabama High School Diploma and the Alternate Adult High School Diploma or four electives credits for the Alabama High School Diploma with Advanced Academic Endorsement.

*** Students earning the diploma with the advanced academic endorsement shall successfully complete two credits in the same foreign language.


^ 2. ASSESSMENT REQUIREMENTS

Pass the required statewide assessment for graduation.


Alabama High School Graduation Requirements (continued)

(Alabama Administrative Code 290-3-1-.02(8)(g)1.)


Course and assessment requirements specified below must be satisfied in order to earn the Alabama Occupational Diploma.


^ 1. COURSE REQUIREMENTS


Effective for students with disabilities as defined by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, students must earn the course credits outlined in Ala. Admin. Code r. 290-3-1-.02(8)(g)1.




^ COURSE REQUIREMENTS



Alabama Occupational Diploma

Credits


ENGLISH LANGUAGE ARTS

4

*Four credits to include the equivalent of:

English I

English II

English III

English IV


1

1

1

1

MATHEMATICS

4

*Four credits to include the equivalent of:

Math I

Math II

Math III

Math IV


1

1

1

1

SCIENCE

4

*Four credits to include the equivalent of:

Science I

Science II

Science III

Science IV


1

1

1

1

^ SOCIAL STUDIES

4

*Four credits to include the equivalent of:

Social Studies I

Social Studies II

Social Studies III

Social Studies IV


1

1

1

1

^ CAREER/TECHNICAL EDUCATION

2

COORDINATED STUDIES

1

COOPERATIVE CAREER/TECHNICAL EDUCATION

1

^ HEALTH EDUCATION

0.5

PHYSICAL EDUCATION

1

ARTS EDUCATION

0.5

ELECTIVES

2

Existing laws require LEAs to offer arts education, physical education, wellness education, career/technical education, and driver education as electives.

^ TOTAL CREDITS

24


* All AOD courses shall comply with the current curriculum guides designated for AOD implementation.

Local Education Agencies may add additional courses/credits and requirements.


  1. ^ ASSESSMENT REQUIREMENTS


Take the required statewide assessment for graduation at least once (during the spring of the eleventh- grade year).

Guidelines and Suggestions for

Local Time Requirements and Homework


Total Instructional Time


The total instructional time of each school day in all schools and at all grade levels shall be not less than 6 hours or 360 minutes, exclusive of lunch periods, recess, or time used for changing classes (^ Code of Alabama, 1975, §16-1-1).


Suggested Time Allotments for Grades 1 - 6


The allocations below are based on considerations of a balanced educational program for Grades
1-6. Local school systems are encouraged to develop a general plan for scheduling that supports interdisciplinary instruction. Remedial and/or enrichment activities should be a part of the time schedule for the specific subject area.


Subject Area Grades 1-3 Grades 4-6

Language Arts 150 minutes daily 120 minutes daily

Mathematics 60 minutes daily 60 minutes daily

Science 30 minutes daily 45 minutes daily

Social Studies 30 minutes daily 45 minutes daily

Physical Education 30 minutes daily* 30 minutes daily*

Health 60 minutes weekly 60 minutes weekly

Technology Education 60 minutes weekly 60 minutes weekly

(Computer Applications)

Character Education 10 minutes daily** 10 minutes daily**

Arts Education


Dance

Music

Theatre

Visual Arts

Daily instruction with certified arts specialists in each of the arts disciplines is the most desirable schedule. However, schools unable to provide daily arts instruction in each discipline are encouraged to schedule in Grades 1 through 3 two 30- to 45-minute arts instruction sessions per week and in Grades 4 through 6 a minimum of 60 minutes of instruction per week. Interdisciplinary instruction within the regular classroom setting is encouraged as an alternative approach for scheduling time for arts instruction when certified arts specialists are not available.


*Established by the State Department of Education in accordance with ^ Code of Alabama, 1975, §16-40-1

**Established by the State Department of Education in accordance with Code of Alabama, 1975, §16-6B-2(h)


Kindergarten


In accordance with Alabama Administrative Code r. 290-5-1-.01(5) Minimum Standards for Organizing Kindergarten Programs in Alabama Schools, the daily time schedule of the kindergartens shall be the same as the schedule of the elementary schools in the systems of which they are a part since kindergartens in Alabama operate as full-day programs. There are no established time guidelines for individual subject areas for the kindergarten classroom. The emphasis is on large blocks of time that allow children the opportunity to explore all areas of the curriculum in an unhurried manner.


It is suggested that the full-day kindergarten program be organized utilizing large blocks of time for large group, small groups, center time, lunch, outdoor activities, snacks, transitions, routines, and afternoon review. Individual exploration, small-group interest activities, interaction with peers and teachers, manipulation of concrete materials, and involvement in many other real-world experiences are needed to provide a balance in the kindergarten classroom.


^ Grades 7-12


A minimum of 140 clock hours of instruction is required for one unit of credit and a minimum of 70 clock hours of instruction is required for one-half unit of credit.


In those schools where Grades 7 and 8 are housed with other elementary grades, the school may choose the time requirements listed for Grades 4-6 or those listed for Grades 7-12.


^ Character Education


For all grades, not less than 10 minutes instruction per day shall focus upon the students’ development of the following character traits: courage, patriotism, citizenship, honesty, fairness, respect for others, kindness, cooperation, self-respect, self-control, courtesy, compassion, tolerance, diligence, generosity, punctuality, cleanliness, cheerfulness, school pride, respect of the environment, patience, creativity, sportsmanship, loyalty, and perseverance.


Homework


Homework is an important component of every student’s instructional program. Students, teachers, and parents should have a clear understanding of the objectives to be accomplished through homework and the role it plays in meeting curriculum requirements. Homework reflects practices that have been taught in the classroom and provides reinforcement and/or remediation for students. It should be student-managed, and the amount should be age-appropriate, encouraging learning through problem solving and practice.


At every grade level, homework should be meaning-centered and mirror classroom activities and experiences. Independent and collaborative projects that foster creativity, problem-solving abilities, and student responsibility are appropriate. Parental support and supervision reinforce the quality of practice or product as well as skill development.


Each local board of education shall establish a policy on homework consistent with the State Board of Education resolution adopted February 23, 1984. (Action Item #F-2)


Bibliography


Alabama Course of Study: Foreign Languages (Bulletin 1998, No. 19). Montgomery, Alabama: Alabama Department of Education, 1998.


American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) Proficiency Guidelines. Yonkers, New York: American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages, 1999.


^ American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) Proficiency Guidelines—Speaking, (1999)
(November 2, 2005).


American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) Proficiency Guidelines
Writing (2001)

^ Indiana Academic Standards for Foreign Languages. Indianapolis, Indiana: Indiana Department of Education, 2000.


Introduction to the Quality Core Curriculum for Modern Languages. Atlanta, Georgia: Georgia Department of Education, 2004.


Lipton, Gladys C., Elementary Foreign Languages Programs (FLES), An Administrator’s Handbook. Lincolnwood, Illinois: National Textbook Company, 1992.


Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, Tenth Edition. Springfield, Massachusetts: Mirriam-Webster, Inc., 1996.


Moore, Matthew S. and Linda Levitan. (eds.) For Hearing People Only. Rochester, New York:
Deaf Life Press, 2003.


North Carolina Standard Course of Study (K-12). Raleigh, North Carolina: North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, 2004.


South Carolina Foreign Language Curriculum Standards. Columbia, South Carolina: South Carolina Department of Education, 2000.


Standards for Classical Language Learning (Collaborative Project of the American Classical League and the American Philological Association and Regional Classical Associations). Oxford, Ohio: American Classical League, 1997.


Standards for Foreign Language Learning in the 21st Century. Yonkers, New York: National Standards in Foreign Language Education Project, 1999.


Valli, Clayton and Ceil Lucas. Linguistics of American Sign Language: An Introduction.
Washington, D.C.: Gallaudet University Press, 1996.


Glossary


^ Advanced Placement (AP) Program – A high school program that provides access to high quality education, accelerates learning, rewards achievement, and enhances both high school and college programs; a course that follows the curriculum of the College Board and that may lead to credit at a college or university.

^ American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) – A national organization dedicated to the improvement and expansion of the teaching and learning of all languages at all levels of instruction throughout the United States.

Authentic assessment – A form of performance assessment structured around real-life problems or situations.

^ Authentic materials – Books, tapes, videos, games, magazines, and other materials produced for use by native speakers of a language.

Circumlocution – An indirect way of expressing something when one does not know a specific word and may have to use a large number of words to express an idea.

Classifier – Specific hand shapes used to represent nouns or features of nouns, including shape, size, depth, texture, location, number, and relationships; can also represent verbs.

Cognates – Words related in origin, as certain words in different languages derived from the same root.

^ Communicative competence – The ability to function in a communicative setting. Refers to production and understanding of what is appropriate to say, how it should be said, and when it should be said.

Community – A group sharing a similar culture and language.

Conjugation – A presentation of the complete set of inflected forms of a verb; a class of verbs having similar inflected forms.

Context – The overall social or cultural situation in which language learning occurs.

Context clues – Information available to a reader for understanding an unfamiliar word. Clues may be taken from the meaning of a sentence as a whole, familiar language patterns, surrounding words and sentences, or the position and function of the word.

Deaf Way – The 1989 International Conference and Festival held in Washington, D.C. to celebrate Deaf culture.

Declension – The inflection in certain languages of nouns, pronouns, and adjectives in categories such as case, number, and gender; a class of words of one language with the same or similar system of inflections (as the first declension of Latin).

Dialect – The form or variety of a spoken language peculiar to a region, community, social, or occupational group.

^ Foreign Language Exploratory (FLEX) – A short-term exploratory program often found at the middle grades. It is not articulated with the elementary nor with the high school program; the term may also be used to describe a nonsequential elementary program with limited contact time (once a week or less).

^ Foreign Language in the Elementary School (FLES) – A well-articulated, sequenced second-language program for children.

Heritage language learner – Someone who has had exposure to a non-English language outside the formal education system; often refers to someone with a home background in the language.

Idiom – A speech form or expression of a language that is peculiar to itself grammatically or that cannot be understood from the meaning of its individual elements.

^ Idiomatic expression – An expression that has a different meaning from the literal. Idiomatic expressions make no sense when translated literally from one language to another (as in raining cats and dogs).

Immersion – An approach to foreign language instruction in which the regular curriculum is taught in the foreign language.

Inflection – Any change in tone or pitch of the voice; an alteration of the form of a word, indicating grammatical features such as number, person, or tense.

Intermediate-low – Refers to the learner’s ability to understand sentences consisting of recombinations of learned elements where context supports understanding; repetition, rewording, or rereading may be necessary. Conversation restricted to concrete exchanges and predictable topics using short, simple statements or questions in the present time frame; able to meet limited practical writing needs; can generally be understood by sympathetic interlocutors.

^ International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Program – A demanding preuniversity course of study designed for highly motivated secondary school students.

Intonation – The rise and fall in pitch of the voice in speech.

Irony – The use of words to express something other than or opposite from the literal meaning.

Language acquisition – Refers to the natural way one acquires a first language through meaningful communication.

Language learning – Implies the formal study of a language, including grammatical rules.

Lexicalized sign – A finger-spelled word that becomes a sign due to frequent use. They often keep the first and last letter and tend to delete middle letters. For example, the finger-spelled word “BACK” has evolved over time to include a directional movement and the deletion of “C.”

Metaphor – A figure of speech in which a word or phrase denoting one kind of object or idea is used in place of another to suggest a likeness or analogy (as in drowning in money).

Meter – Regular patterns of syllables as found in poetry.

Multicultural – A term referring to several cultures.

Nonmanual grammatical signals – Facial expressions, head movements, and body posture that accompany signs to provide additional grammatical information.

Nonprint text – Any medium that creates meaning through sound or images or both, such as symbols, words, songs, speeches, pictures, and illustrations not in traditional print form.

Nonverbal behavior – A source of information used by readers or listeners to construct meaning not involving language; can involve facial expressions, gestures, and eye contact.

Novice-high – Refers to the learner’s ability to understand short, learned words and phrases and some sentences where context supports understanding; may need repetition, rephrasing, or rereading. Conversation restricted to predictable topics; able to meet limited basic practical writing needs; can generally be understood by sympathetic interlocutors.

Novice-low – Refers to the learner’s ability to understand occasional words such as cognates and borrowed words. May be able to exchange greetings, provide identities, and name familiar objects; can reproduce from memory a limited number of isolated words or familiar phrases; essentially has no functional communicative ability.

Novice-mid – Refers to the learner’s ability to understand an increased number of words and phrases, including cognates and borrowed words where context highly supports understanding; may require repetition, slower rate of speech, or need rereading. Oral and written production consists of isolated words and learned phrases; can handle elementary needs and express basic courtesies; shows little evidence of functional writing skills; may be understood with great difficulty by sympathetic interlocutors.

Parameters – A part of a sign. There are five parameters in American Sign Language—movement, hand shape, location, orientation, and nonmanual grammatical signals.

^ Performance-based assessment – An assessment requiring the construction of a response or product. These assessments are open-ended and do not have predetermined answers.

Perspectives – Unobservable aspects of a society. Includes the values, cultural assumptions, and beliefs that form the world view of a cultural group.

Practices – Observable behaviors of a given cultural group.

Predictable pattern texts – A story characterized by predictable story lines and repetition of phrases and rhythm or rhyme that enables young children to make predictions about content.

Primary sources – Results of experiments or original research, literary works, autobiographies, original theories, and other materials.

Products – Tangible and intangible creations of a society. Tangible products may include everyday items such as houses as well as aesthetic products such as literary achievements. Examples of intangible products are the institutions created by the society such as religious institutions.

Proficiency – Ability to communicate effectively in both oral and written form in the cultures where a language is spoken.

Scansion – The analysis of verse to show its metrical patterns; scanning.

Signaling devices – Alerting devices used to signal a telephone ringing, a smoke alarm beeping, a baby crying, etc. The signal may be visual (flashing light), auditory (increase in amplification), or vibrotactile (a vibration).

Simile – A figure of speech in which two essentially unlike things are compared with the use of like or as (as in He was as strong as a bull.).

Syntax – The way language is structured and ordered within sentences.

Target language – The language being learned.

Temporal aspect – Aspectual distinctions in American Sign Language that give information about the time or frequency of action represented by a verb.

Time frames – General periods in time (past, present, or future), but not necessarily specific tenses. For example, future time can be indicated by use of the future tense, but also by the present tense as in Voy a ir al cine esta tarde. (I am going to go to the movies this afternoon.) Likewise, past time can be indicated by use of the present tense as in Elle vient de partir. (She has just left.)

TTY – A teletypewriter, also called a telecommunication device for the Deaf (TDD). A TTY consists of a keyboard, which holds 20 to 30 character keys, a display screen, and a modem. Letters typed into the machine are turned into electrical signals that travel over regular telephone lines. When signals reach their final destination, they are converted back to letters that appear on a display screen.

Videophone – A videocommunication device using Internet protocol that enables a person using sign language to make a point-to-point call or a video-relay service call.




Alabama Course of Study: Languages Other Than English—Foreign Languages




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