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Core Course Updates for Secondary Students
Core Course Updates for Secondary Students
Posted on 02/10/2021
As secondary students begin to register for 2021-22 classes, changes to core classes have been made in English, Math, and Science. Courses were removed, added, or merged with other courses to increase learning opportunities for students and to prepare them with 21st century skills.

All students deserve engaging and challenging grade-level coursework. By increasing access to rigorous learning opportunities in core classes, students will be well prepared for high school and beyond.

Junior High Course Updates (full course descriptions)

     • Grades 7 & 8: English Language Arts Honors and Core Classes will merge
Resources and materials in both English 7 and English 8 will prepare students for Pre-AP and AP options in high school courses. As such, Grade 7 honors and core classes will merge into English 7 and Grade 8 honors and core classes will merge into English 8.

     • Grades 7 & 8: Social Studies Honors and Core Classes will merge
Social Studies classes will merge into Pacific Northwest Studies for 7th grade, and American Studies 1 for 8th grade.

     • Grade 7: Accelerated Math 7-8 Replaces Honors Math 7
Honors Math 7 will be replaced with a newly titled course: Accelerated Math 7-8. This course is designed to integrate two years of math in one year. Students taking this course should be prepared to work at a fast pace and have a solid understanding of math standards. Students have a choice between Math 7 or Accelerated Math 7-8.

     • Grade 7 & 8: PAGE Students
Students who qualify for the highly capable PAGE program, have the following options available to them. The PAGE Program is located at Stahl, Ferrucci, Kalles. Updates to PAGE classes for grades 7-8 include:
     · PAGE English 7 & PAGE English 8
     · PAGE 7 Pre-AP Algebra 1 & PAGE 8 Pre-AP Geometry
     · PAGE 7 Pacific NW Studies & PAGE American Studies I
     · PAGE 7 Accelerated Science 7-8 & PAGE 8 Physical Science

High School Course Updates (full course descriptions)

     • College Board Pre-AP for ALL
Pre-AP for ALL means that Pre-AP frameworks and assessments are the foundation for all sections of a particular course. Pre-AP courses are specifically designed to provide grade-level course work based on high school content, skills, and expectations. There is no cost and no AP exam to pass. Next year, in many cases, Pre-AP Courses replace general courses at the secondary level.

     • Grade 10 – 12 Science Title Changes
Replacing general Biology is Pre-AP Biology and replacing general Chemistry is Pre-AP Chemistry. The Pre-AP science courses include the same major content and include Pre-AP materials to prepare students for grade-level coursework and beyond. Some secondary schools will offer a general science option during this transition year.

     • Grade 8 & 9 Pre-AP Algebra I & Pre-AP Geometry
Replacing general Algebra I is Pre-AP Algebra I and replacing general Geometry is Pre-AP Geometry. The Pre-AP math courses include the same major content and include Pre-AP materials to prepare students for grade-level coursework and beyond.


Where can a parent see the sequence of courses in core areas?
     In the Junior High and High School Course of Study documents.

What is a heterogeneous classroom?
     A heterogeneous classroom is one that includes students of various learning levels. Students in Puyallup are typically in heterogeneous classrooms in elementary school and in junior high science classes. Starting in Grade 9, students select courses based on needs and interests.

How are the teachers going to challenge and meet the learning needs of all students?
     Teachers use various teaching strategies and materials to appropriately challenge students at varied readiness levels. Classroom-based assessments are an example of this that help determine the individual needs of a student.

How is merging honors and core classes beneficial for students?
     Merging classes provides a larger learning community for students. Our core instructional strategies support students at all learning levels, regardless of skillset. By grouping students in teams and providing structured student discussions, students can leverage various skillsets and learn from each other.

Will my child be able to access pre-AP and AP classes at the high school level?
     Yes. Pre-AP and AP classes are available to all high school students. Students request the courses that fit their needs and interests. Some AP classes may have pre-requisites related to the content. Pre-requisites are listed in the course catalog.

Will my child be prepared for courses in high school and beyond?
     With the merging of honors and core courses, the goal is to increase students’ readiness for the future of work and life. The research from Harvard’s Change Leadership group found that, “…in preparation for the 21st century, schools must promote higher levels of intellectual and social skills for work, citizenship, and life-long learning.”

Do you have a question or concern that is not addressed above? Email Communications and we’ll route your email for assistance.