TAL held a meeting on August 4 to help parents understand the math acceleration appeals process better. Jon Manier, Executive Director of Instructional Equity for FPS, answered families’ questions. A few of the key points covered are shown below.
The current acceleration protocol is here: http://www.farmington.k12.mi.us/curriculum/pdf/math_acceleration_protocol.pdf
The math acceleration appeals process is described here: http://www.farmington.k12.mi.us/curriculum/pdf/math_acceleration_appeal.pdf
Families wishing to appeal the decision (the student does not meet all the criteria specified on the district’s website, but may still benefit from acceleration) should write a letter indicating interest and why. This letter is due by August 8 to Jon Manier or the Assistant Superintendent of Instruction. Jon’s email address is: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Items that are helpful to include in the appeal are:
- Evidence of math instruction outside of school: Kumon, online classes, private tutoring
- Activities kids do at home that indicate they have a strong interest in math
- Input from teacher(s) about math acceleration (if you can’t get ahold of the teacher you need, first contact the principal, and then indicate that in your letter)
- If the student had poor scores on a particular test and there is a reason (i.e., illness), explain that
- Test scores on MEAP and NWEA if you have them
- NWEA screening from district is based on Winter score (Jan/Feb). If the score went way up in Spring, mention that in your letter
- Evidence that the student has deep understanding of mathematical concepts, such as being able to explain multiple ways to come to a solution
FPS will make decisions within a week or two of the appeals committee meeting in August.
If you are coming from another district or a private school, and your student hasn’t had the MEAP and NWEA tests, you should request an assessment after 2-3 weeks based on teacher’s input.
In 7th grade families can choose regular math or accelerated math, which is 7th and 8th grade together, so that in 8th grade the student can take Algebra 1. This can happen even if the student was not accelerated previously. However, you can’t choose Algebra 1 in 7th grade unless you were accelerated in 6th grade.