Maybe you will remember I posted about Fern and her struggles with Algebra last year. She got D's all year. Just after the fourth quarter started she asked for tutoring, so we invested many dollars in many hours of tutoring. Much of the last quarter was devoted to HSA prep. With the tutoring she managed an 83 on her final, but still a D for the quarter because of missed assignments and, according to her, no grades in the gradebook after they started focusing on the HSA.
The guidance counselor, her algebra teachers, yeah, she had two, but that's another story, and the principal all thought she should repeat algebra, that she couldn't do the work in geometry, didn't understand algebra, yada yada, and since she was only a 7th grader, she had plenty of time to retake it and get the rest of her math in before graduation.
So here we are, on the cusp of a new school year. Fern has been getting ready mentally to be in algebra again, determined to do well. I spoke to the principal about my concerns: Fern absolutely must have a dynamic teacher this year who is going to hold her attention all year so she doesn't get bored, and when she's bored she won't do her work and then receive another low grade. I also tried delicately to imply I didn't trust the teacher, whom she had for most of last year, had graded her fairly, not giving her all possible credit due. How does someone get and 83 and still a D? But, either she ignored my jabs about her employee, or was oblivious to them. (I'd leave a message for the teacher to call me, but instead returning my call, she'd harass Fern in class the next day.)
I was not going to tolerate another year with a teacher like that. So Fern was placed with Mrs Lamb. Fern likes her, she was the teacher who ran the morning HSA prep sessions before school last spring. All will be fine.
(pause for dramatic music)
This week I got a call from her principal: The HSA scores came in and Fern blew it out of the water (my words, not hers). Fern got a very high score, and she is allowed to go on to geometry if she wants to, with the stipulation she will commit to it and work hard. Fern's decision.
The drawback of staying in algebra: boredom, especially in spring quarter when the class is doing HSA prep and she's exempt.
The drawback to going on to geometry: the algebra grade stands. It could, and probably will hold her back from getting into Bowie Summit or Roosevelt (the area's advanced high schools). But the upside is, she can thumb her nose (figuratively, please) at those teachers and counselors who said she couldn't do it.
You go girl! I mean really, go, go do your homework!
5 hours ago