What is the Continuous Learning Framework in Mathematics?
During the 2015-2016 school year and moving forward, elementary and middle school students in Atlanta Public Schools (APS) will be provided opportunities for placement in an Advanced or Accelerated course, provided they meet the placement criteria.
What will the framework look like for elementary APS students in mathematics?
Students participating in the Advanced and the Accelerated curriculum will be provided with an opportunity to master the curriculum at a much deeper level and a faster pace through the use of differentiated instructional resources to support their learning. Both levels are designed to support the mathematical abilities of our most talented and motivated students.
Advanced mathematics courses are designed for mathematically talented students and lead to Advanced or Accelerated math courses in middle school. These courses include grade‐level standards, which are enhanced by highly complex tasks. Students suited for the advanced progression are deep thinkers and talented in mathematics. Students in the advanced progression will be required to master 1.5 years of math during the span of the school year. To prevent gaps in instruction while providing meaningful opportunities for advancement and differentiation, only Advanced Mathematics courses will be offered for 4th and 5th grade students.
Accelerated mathematics courses are designed for students who are developmentally and academically ready to learn a compacted mathematics curriculum at a faster pace. Because elementary standards are foundational, Accelerated mathematics courses that lead to year-ahead instruction, will not be offered in elementary grades.
How will performance on assessments affect a student’s ability to qualify for Advanced Math?
Although the guidelines provide criteria for a high percentage of mastery on assessments, overall aptitude and work ethic demonstrated by the collective evidence of past performance and teacher feedback should also be considered, with the ultimate decision based upon the best interests of the students. Because the data from the Georgia Milestones Assessment will not be available for review until the fall, Computer Adaptive (CAAS) scores will be a component of the rubric-based criteria. Due to a decrease in student testing for the 2015-2016 school year, a student’s “Winter” scores from the previous school year and the “Fall” scores from the current year will be considered.
How will teachers recommend students for Advanced Mathematics?
The APS Advanced Mathematics Selection Process, as outlined in the APS Placement Guidance Document, will be used to support the classroom teacher’s recommendation for student placement into courses based upon their ability, motivation, interest, and effort. Students will be selected for participation in Advanced Mathematics by the end of the third week of school (August 2015), which will not negatively impact the instructional program.