The Combo Class at Foothill HS in the Shasta Union HSD has a unique class structure. It was created by Mr. L with support from the Math Dept chair, Ms. Sheena McCloud. It has been operating with great success since the school year 2005-06.
Many 8th grade students take algebra, understand quite a bit of the material, but are not as proficient as they could be with more exposure to the curriculum. At FHS we identify a core group of incoming 9th graders and place these students in the two-year Combo Class program. Some key facts about the Combo Class:
- All 25 CA Algebra 1 standards are covered in the freshman year
- A smooth transition to Algebra 2 curriculum is made in the second half of 9th grade
- Geometrical concepts critical to future success are covered in the first half of the 10th grade
- The remaining parts of the Algebra 2 curriculum (all 25 CA standards) are completed in the second half of the 10th grade
- The large majority of students leaving the Combo Class are ready for Trigonometry/Pre-Calculus their junior year
- 98% of the 06-07 and 07-08 freshmen scored Proficient on the CA STAR Algebra 1 test.
- 53% of the 06-07 freshmen and 70% of the 07-08 freshmen scored Advanced on the CA STAR Algebra 1 test; the state average is 2%
- Students learn how to program a graphing calculator
- Students learn how to use a computer to create mathematics projects
- Students learn how to use GeoGebra, a powerful problem-solving Algebra/Geometry/Calculus software
The Combo Class is a rewarding course to teach, since it requires the teacher to stimulate and challenge high caliber students. It’s exciting to watch the mathematical growth of these students over the course of two years.