Enrollment

  • All students must be assigned a full academic schedule in order to be considered an enrolled student at Falmouth High School. Students take the equivalent of six classes, which meets the minimum 24 academic credits for the school year.  Exceptions exist for documented medical disabilities with administrative approval. Students seeking out of school exchange programs or the like must withdraw from the high school then re-enroll upon return.

The Academic Schedule

  • The calendar of district events can be found on our website, www.falmouth.k12.ma.us. Also, our calendar of high school events can be found on the high school website www.falmouth.k12.ma.us/Domain/8.

    The school year runs 185 days, including an additional 5 days in case of school closings for weather or other emergencies. Any of the 5 days not necessary to cover emergencies will be dropped from the calendar at the end of the school year.

    The year is divided into four marking periods with report cards issued at the end of each. A marking period consists of approximately forty-five school days. Falmouth High School runs on a six-day rotation. A cycle might start on Wednesday and run Thursday, Friday, Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. The next six-day cycle would start on Thursday and run through the next Thursday.

    The purpose of the six-day cycle is to create a rotation relative to the days of the week so that, for instance, Monday holidays don’t consistently interfere with the same classes.

    Students and teachers will be reminded each day that it is Day A, B, C, D, E, or F.

Conditions to Receive Diplomas

  • The Falmouth Public Schools will grant differentiated diplomas to students to reflect a variety of levels of accomplishment while meeting the basic graduation expectations of the Falmouth School Committee and Falmouth High School.

    High school graduation is signified by receipt of a diploma and by a statement on the student’s transcript. Both the diploma and the transcript will provide for differentiation according to levels of accomplishment as set forth below. All levels allow participation in the graduation ceremony, although two types signify lack of full completion of graduation requirements. Students must be enrolled at FHS for at least one semester of senior year to receive a diploma.

    The specific academic requirements for graduation leaves students and parents/guardians a range of options. The school encourages students to seek a broad sampling of learning experiences at this time in their lives. A course at Falmouth High School may be scheduled to run for half or all of a school year. In most cases, students will receive two credits for passing a half-year (two marking periods) course; and four credits upon the satisfactory completion of a full-year course.

    No credit is given for courses that are failed for reasons of withdrawal, incomplete work, or unsatisfactory work.

    To graduate, students must earn a minimum number of course credits according to the following schedule:

    Course Type

    Number of Credits

    English

    16

    Math

    16

    Science

    12

    Social Studies

    12

    Business, Fine Arts or Applied Arts

    4

    Physical Education/Health

    8

    Electives

    20

    World Language

    8

    Total credits, 96

    Please realize that many colleges and career plans require other special course sequences.  No more than 24 credits in one subject area will be counted toward fulfillment of minimal graduation requirements.

    The School Committee, while reaffirming that high school students should attempt to broaden their interests and explore a full program of study, recognizes that it may be in the best interest of some students to graduate in fewer than four years.  This may take place under the following circumstances:

    1. The student’s counselor and the parents/guardians agree that it is in the student’s best interest
    2. Appropriate forms are completed according to the following deadlines:
      1. For juniors accelerating a full year, forms by the end of the first semester of junior year
      2. For seniors accelerating by one half year, forms at the beginning of the first quarter of senior year.
    3. All minimum requirements are met
    4. Approval by the principal

English Language Development

  • State law requires that English Learners (ELs) receive instruction that is specifically designed to assist them in learning the English language and subject matter content and that parents/guardians participate in the decision-making process. When a student enrolls in Falmouth Public Schools, the district will determine whether the student is an English Learner, and the student will be placed in an appropriate instructional setting to support content and language learning.

Academic Regulations and Guidelines

  • As minimum guidelines for students considering four-year colleges, the following are suggested:

    1. 16 credits of English
    2. 8 - 16 credits of one world language
    3. 16 credits of mathematics, sequence of courses up to and including Algebra II
    4. 12 - 16 credits of science, at least 12 credits of lab science
    5. 12 credits of social studies
    6. 96 total credits including PE, the arts, and other special interest courses

    Please see our guidance counselors for specific requirements for individual colleges or major interests, and please also refer to the current Falmouth High School Program of Studies for further information regarding course credits and graduation requirements.

    Students have the option of retaking a class to improve a grade. The original class credit remains; however, the higher grade may replace the previously earned grade on the transcript.

    Falmouth High School offers a broad curriculum in terms of both the scope of courses and the skill levels at which the courses are offered. Student enrollment and ability to succeed in a class may depend on the completion of prior courses.

    Prerequisites, if necessary, are listed with a course description to assist parents and students in making good choices about entering a particular course. Prerequisite courses must be passed; no prerequisites are satisfied without a passing grade. If a reasonable level of competence has not been achieved, the student may choose to go to summer school to repeat the course, if it is available. Finally, certain courses require performance prerequisites. This may take the shape of an audition (in some musical courses), an honors placement exam, a writing sample, or the completion of a project to demonstrate necessary skills.

    Class Rank -- Rank in class depends upon points earned from the quality of the grades earned and the quantity of course credits undertaken. A weighted system applies to grades, with the number value for a letter grade dependent on the category of difficulty of the course.

    The four-category system follows a long-standing labeling of courses in the Program of Studies. Category I courses have an AP designation. Category II courses are designated with an asterisk (*) meaning honors work. Category III (CP2) and Category IV (CP1) courses are comprised of work that is oriented toward college and career readiness.

     

    Grades and Corresponding Point Factors

    Category I

    Letter Grade

    Corresponding Point Factors

    A

    20

    A-

    19

    B+

    18

    B

    17

    B-

    16

    C+

    15

    C

    14

    C-

    13

    D+

    12

    D

    11

    D-

    10

    F

    0

    Category II

    Letter Grade

    Corresponding Point Factors

    A

    17

    A-

    16

    B+

    15

    B

    14

    B-

    13

    C+

    12

    C

    11

    C-

    10

    D+

    9

    D

    8

    D-

    7

    F

    0

    Category III

    Letter Grade

    Corresponding Point Factors

    A

    14

    A-

    13

    B+

    12

    B

    11

    B-

    10

    C+

    9

    C

    8

    C-

    7

    D+

    6

    D

    5

    D-

    4

    P

    0

    F

    0

    Category IV

    Letter Grade

    Corresponding Point Factors

    A

    11

    A-

    10

    B+

    9

    B

    8

    B-

    7

    C+

    6

    C

    5

    C-

    4

    D+

    3

    D

    2

    D-

    1

    P

    0

    F

    0

    The basic rationale is to provide a weighted system that rewards the work of students who choose more difficult courses, without creating such a heavy weighting that students feel forced to take advanced courses, above their abilities, in order to compete for rank in class. Students should be encouraged to work successfully and productively at their appropriate level of challenge.

    Rank in class is reported by groups of one-twentieth (1/20) or 5% of the graduating class, based on work through the end of junior year only.

    Grade Point Average (GPA) is unweighted and computed using the final grade for a course. Courses currently “in progress” will have quarter grades averaged for the GPA. Quarterly averaging also applies to current year courses with blank or incomplete final grades.

    All course work taken during grades 9-12 applies to GPA. A=4.0 A-=3.7 B+=3.3 B=3.0 B-=2.7 C+=2.3 C=2.0 C-=1.7 D+=1.3 D=1.0 D-0.7 F=0

    At the end of each marking period an honor roll is published. To be eligible a student must meet minimum course load requirements. (See point 1 in this section.) Students having all A’s and A-’s are awarded High Honors; students with no grade lower than a B- are awarded Honors. Work in all courses applies.

Honor Societies

  • National Honor Society (NHS)

    Juniors and seniors are eligible for membership in the National Honor Society determined by excellence in academics, leadership, character, and community service. Academic requirements are applied to all grades up to the time of induction:

    1. Candidates must have a 3.50 overall average or better in courses taken in grades 9-11.
    2. A move from a more demanding level of a subject to a less demanding level will require consideration by the review committee of the reasons and of the status of the student at the time.
    3. Transcripts that are not characterized by academic challenge and evidence of consistently satisfactory performance are subject to consideration by the review committee.
    4. Student activity information forms will be provided which must be completed and submitted by a deadline in order to be considered for membership. Additionally, the prospective candidates must demonstrate evidence of the following:
      1. Community service such as volunteering in a hospital, church, as a tutor or in a community activity.
      2. Extracurricular activities, sports, clubs, community activity, and family responsibility.

    Finally, these candidates will submit evidence of good character in the form of letters of support from members of the community. Also, a student’s record in school must be clear of evidence of a serious violation of school rules and the student should not have any documented evidence of academic dishonesty. The NHS advisor works with the faculty committee to review each student’s activity information form for membership. Students will then receive notification of their acceptance. The committee continues to ensure that the honor society standards are maintained. In order to graduate as a member of the NHS, the student must continue to meet academic requirements and also perform community service: ten hours as a junior and 20 hours as a senior.

    There will be a five-member review committee made up of faculty members from the high school. The committee will have an organizational meeting in September of each year and thereafter will meet as necessary with the advisor. Decisions of that committee may be appealed to the Principal. Membership in the NHS will be rescinded for failure to maintain established standards.

    Math Honor Society

    Mu Alpha Theta is a National High School and Two Year College Mathematics Honor Society dedicated to inspiring keen interest in mathematics. Membership is open to juniors and seniors who have demonstrated excellence in Honors Math classes with a 3.50 or better math GPA, commit to volunteer as a math tutor, and attend monthly meetings.

    Science Honor Society

    Membership in the Science National Honor Society is open to juniors and seniors who have maintained a 3.0 grade point average overall and a 3.50 GPA in all science courses and who have been or are enrolled in at least one honors or upper level science course. Members must also participate in a science-related service project which furthers the knowledge of science in the school and community.

    French Honor Society

    Membership in the Société Honoraire de Français is open for students who have completed at least the first semester of sophomore year studies in French. Students need an overall average of A- in French and B- in all classes to be invited for membership. Students need to perform 20 hours of community service, 10 hours in Foreign Language service and 10 hours in any area.

    National Art Honor Society (NAHS)

    NAHS membership is for inspiring and recognizing students who have shown an outstanding ability in art. The NAHS strives to aid members in working toward the attainment of the highest standards in art areas, and to bring art education to the attention of the school and community.

    TRI-M National Music Honor Society

    Students are selected for membership in the TRI-M National Music Honor Society on the basis of scholarship, character, cooperation, leadership, and service to school and community. Students must be in their junior or senior years and must have earned an “A” average in all music performance courses and a GPA of 3.0 in all other academic subjects.

Course and Level Changes

  • All course changes must be requested on a drop/add form, which is available in the Guidance Office.

    • To change an academic class during the 1st cycle, a student’s parent/guardian and their guidance counselor must give approval on the drop/add form.
    • To change a class during the 2nd cycle, a student’s parent/guardian, guidance counselor, and the appropriate department head must give approval on the drop/add form.
    • To drop a class after the completion of the 2nd cycle, administrative approval must be sought, and the student will receive the appropriate WP or WF grade.
    • To change a level designation in a particular class, a student will need approval from their parent/guardian, guidance counselor, and appropriate department head. If the level change request is initiated after the first marking period, administrative approval will be required.

Credit Recovery

  • Students may take courses online, or in summer school under specific conditions, and apply the earned credit toward their school diploma credit. Students attending summer school are subject to all Falmouth High School discipline rules.

    1. The student must receive a grade of C or better in the summer session course in order to have it accepted for graduation credit.
    2. The courses in summer school must be paid for by the student, following normal procedures.
    3. The number of day school credits applied to the minimum graduation requirements must not be less than three-fourths (3/4) of the total.
    4. Further restrictions on Summer School credits include the fact that make-up credits may be earned by students who have failed a course during the regular school day/year, if the following conditions are met:
      1. Enrollment must be planned in advance with the student’s counselor;
      2. Students must have earned at least a 45 average in the failed day school course; and
      3. Students must maintain a minimum grade of C in the summer school course as well as meet all attendance requirements for summer school.
      4. “Original” credits for courses not previously attempted in day school are generally not permitted through summer school courses. With the approval of the student’s counselor, students may seek exception through direct consultation with the high school principal.
      5. Certain academic courses may be repeated in summer school in order to fulfill grade requirements for advancement in the day school program. Please note that in these cases the day school course grade remains on the student transcript, and the summer school grade is recorded without graduation credit.
    5. Students are able to make up credits after school through enrollment in online learning courses. Students seeking such enrollment must consult with their guidance counselor for more information. These online learning courses are also available during the summer session. Note that all credit recovery online learning classes require tuition/fees in order to be enrolled. Please see your guidance counselor for more information.

Credit Requirements

  • In order to advance with the proper graduating class in sophomore, junior, and senior year, students must earn minimum numbers of credits toward graduation:

    • Senior 68 credits
    • Junior 48 credits
    • Sophomore 22 credits

    Students will return to the appropriate Year of Graduation (YOG) designation once they have completed the required credits.

Field Trip Expectations

    • Students will observe school rules of behavior and respect the laws and property of the region.
    • Students must observe curfews set by chaperones and be respectful of hotel guests. Some basic reminders are: no running, no shouting, no slamming of doors, and socially appropriate clothing should be worn at all times. Music and television should be played softly.
    • A buddy system will be enforced by chaperones in order to ensure safety.
    • Students who are absent from school during the school activity must make up the work they missed. Unless previously assigned, this work must be done within the time period as specified in this handbook (one day missed= one day make up).

Field Trip Procedures

    • The Travel and Medical Permission Form must be signed by both parent/guardian and student and returned on the due date to the chaperone.
    • During transits between activities, each student will be assigned to an appropriate chaperone. The student must report to their chaperone for head counts at specified times.
    • When appropriate, a telephone tree will be established by chaperones to alert parents or guardians in case of late or early return of students on a school activity or trip. Please check on who will be calling you and whom you will be calling.
    • When necessary, a student should ask their doctor for a copy of their prescription in case the student needs to confirm medication needs with the nurse and/or chaperone.
    • Students participating in a school-sponsored activity are covered under the school insurance policy.
    • Field Trips in the months of May and June are not encouraged and must have permission of the principal.

Grading and Report Cards

  • Classroom and Grading Standards

    Departments have established their own individual standards for classroom conditions such as seating arrangements, required materials, chewing gum, and assignment deadlines. Departments have established the specifics of grading requirements and guidelines. These will be distributed in writing at the beginning of each course. Parents should check with students to review this information when a student transfers into a new class and they should request a copy of the policy from the teacher.

    Homework Guidelines

    As a District, the Falmouth Public Schools recognizes that meaningful and relevant homework reinforces instruction. We collectively define homework as work assigned by a teacher to be completed outside of class time; homework may include both short- and long-term assignments. We recognize that homework helps to expand academic achievement and responsibility while reinforcing or extending learning. Our teachers design homework with three intentions: preparation, practice, and extension.

    Intentions of Homework

    1. PREPARATION: exposure to a topic as an introduction to new concepts and ideas; such assignments may include reading, studying, and other assignments that do not result in a submittable product but are essential to continued learning.
    2. PRACTICE: an opportunity for students to strengthen skills and concepts taught in the classroom by repeating them through continued learning opportunities related to the in-class instruction.
    3. EXTENSION: an opportunity for students to apply, synthesize, problem solve, and/or transfer newly acquired skills to other situations and contexts.

    In addition to the forms of homework outlined above, students are also assigned longer-term projects from time to time. Such assignments extend skills and concepts taught in the classroom. Class time should be allotted for students to research and work on their project. Time spent outside of class on projects should be part of, not in addition to, routine homework. Timelines should be clearly stated and include interim checkpoints. Projects should reflect the work of students.

    Time Guidelines

    Grades 1 - 2 Occasional assignments each week, each on a separate night and each having a meaningful connection to learning and lasting no more than 15 to 20 minutes.

    Grades 3 - 4 Occasional assignments each week that require no more than 45 minutes of homework on a weeknight.

    Grades 5 - 6 Occasional assignments each week that require no more than 60 minutes of homework on a weeknight.

    Grades 7 - 8 Up to 90 minutes of homework each night on several evenings throughout the week.

    Grades 9 - 12 The courses in which students enroll at Falmouth High School provide an array of opportunities and challenges. Likewise, courses each fall into one of five credit designations: undesignated, college preparatory 1 (CP1), college preparatory 2 (CP2), honors (H), and advanced placement (AP). Each designation bears its own homework expectations:

    Undesignated, CP1 & CP2 Average of 30 minutes per evening per course several times throughout the week.

    Honors Average of 45 minutes per evening per course several times throughout the week.

    AP Average of 60 minutes per evening per course several times throughout the week.

    Upon returning to school after a period of absences, a student has a length of time equal to the number of school days absent to make up missed work. A student not making up the work in the allotted time will receive a failing mark for the work not made up. Previously announced assignments/tests must be completed upon return. The responsibility is on the student to meet with the teacher to determine when the assignment/test is to be made up.

    If any extenuating circumstances exist, the parent/guardian should contact the assistant principal or the guidance counselor. The assistant principal and/or guidance counselor will consult with teacher, department head, the assistant principal, and principal when necessary.

    Expectations

    This effort must be coordinated among the schools, educators, families, and students.

    An Educator expects a Student will...

    1. Record homework assignments in an agenda or similar system for recording assignments and self-monitoring progress;
    2. Make a legitimate effort to complete the homework assignment neatly and to the best of their ability or advocate for clarification and/or assistance when needed;
    3. Manage time and submit all assignments when due, including long-term assignments provided in advance of an absence;
    4. When making course selections, consider ability to realistically complete assignments in a healthy manner.

    An Educator expects a Parent/Guardian will...

    1. Establish homework as a priority;
    2. Assist their child in designating (and organizing) a space in which to complete assignments;
    3. Support their child in developing independent time management and work habits by monitoring and assisting as needed;
    4. Communicate with an educator if their child experiences difficulty completing homework in the suggested time;
    5. Provide limited assistance on assignments to ensure that the student’s work is their own.

    A Parent/Guardian and Student expect an Educator will...

    1. Assign homework assignments that are meaningful and provide independent practice of skills taught or enrichment of content taught in class;
    2. Announce, repeat, and remind their classes about short-term and long-term assignments that require time out of class for completion;
    3. Communicate to families and students how homework will be evaluated;
    4. Check homework consistently and provide timely feedback to students.

    Report Cards

    Report cards are issued four times a year.  Achievement marks are as follows:

     

    Letter Grade

    Grade Percentage

    A

    93% and above

    A-

    90%-92%

    B+

    87%-89%

    B

    83%-86%

    B-

    80%-82%

    C+

    77%-79%

    C

    73%-76%

    C-

    70%-72%

    D+

    67%-69%

    D

    63%-66%

    D-

    60%-62%

    P

    Passing

    NP

    Not Passing

    F

    59% and below

    I

    Incomplete

    M

    Medical Excuse

    WP

    Withdrawn Passing

    WF

    Withdrawn Failing



Last Modified on Tuesday at 11:12 AM