Hampden Charter School Of Science

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Hampden Charter School of Science Honors Program is an educational choice that prepares students for the rigor of college work.  Students will be presented with the discipline of honors classes along with enhanced learning experiences focusing on critical thinking skills, research work, experiential learning, and service learning.

The Honors Program incorporates high standards for teaching and learning that were developed specifically for this program.  The program is designed for students who have demonstrated above average academic ability, motivation, and interest for further advanced post-secondary study and will prepare students for the challenge and rigor of college courses.­­­

HCSS takes into account the difficulty of the Honors Courses and sets the weight of each Honors Course with 1.125 coefficient. Therefore, an Honors Course has more impact on the student’s GPA than a regular course. As an example, if a student gets “4.0” from the honors course, the student will have this course calculated as “4.5” towards his/her GPA.

Middle school students who are enrolled in Algebra 1 Honors will earn 2 (two) high school Algebra 1 credits if they achieve a B- (80%) or better grade for the year.

To Enroll in the Honors Program

  • Students are required to earn a certain grade in the prerequisite course(s). Check the table below for specific course requirements.

Note: Summer School classes do not qualify as a prerequisite course for honors courses.

  • Students must have an overall GPA of at least 3.0
  • Students must score at high proficient level or better on the current or previous year’s state test.
  • Students must take the HCSS proficiency test and earn at least 80% or higher. The test is given in the last week of the school.
  • Students must have recommendations from two different teachers including previous prerequisite course teacher(s)
  • Students must have reasonable attendance and discipline records
  • Students must sign the honors student commitment form
  • Students must submit the Honors Course application form

After evaluating each applicant, the administration will make the final decision. 

After Enrolling in the Course

  • Assigned summer work has a substantial impact on the students’ first quarter Honors course grade.
  • The student must complete all work assigned for the summer preceding fall semester.
  • The student will be withdrawn from the Honors course in the event of low effort and low test score(s) at the end of first quarter.

Expectations

Upon acceptance into the Honors program, students are expected to:

  • Maintain A/B grades in all Honors courses.
  • Remain in the course(s) for the duration of the year.  Student success is the goal of HCSS and students not succeeding in an Honors class will be handled on an individual basis.  
    • Students earning a final grade of “C” from the Honors course will take a proficiency test in the same subject at the end of the year.
    • Students earning a final grade lower than a "C" may not move to the next Honors class. This will be evaluated at the end of each school year. 
  • Get a scaled score of 250 or better from the state ELA/MATH tests.
  • Maintain at least an overall 3.0 GPA.
  • Maintain high standards of academic integrity.
  • Maintain good attendance by being in class every day. Excessive absences are grounds for removal from the course.
  • Make proper arrangements to attend the extra study sessions on Saturday or after school if needed.
  • Work responsibly in class and adhere to rules.
  • Be on time for class daily with appropriate work materials.
  • Turn assignments in on time.
  • Produce quality work.
  • Ask questions for clarification and understanding.

To Stay in the Honors Program

  • Students who have a final average grade of B- (80) or higher in the Honors course will be enrolled in the next Honors course if the students meet all criteria.
  • Students who have a final average grade of C (70-79) in the Honors course will take a proficiency test in that same subject at the end of the year.
  • Students who have a final average grade of D+ (69) or lower in the Honors course will be withdrawn from the Honors Program. 
  • Students who have a final average grade of an "F" in any course will be withdrawn from the Honors Program.
  • Students must have a scaled score of 250 or better on the previous year’s MCAS test
  • Students must have reasonable attendance and discipline records
  • Students must sign the honors student commitment form
  • Students must submit the Honors Course application form

The Administration will review each student’s status at the end of the year and will notify students if they will be enrolled or withdrawn from the Honors Program.

Note: HCSS reserves the right to close an Honors class based on the enrollment and/or staff availability.