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Essex High School - Science

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Philosophy: Scientific literacy is vital for all students to become informed citizens in order to make responsible and ethical decisions about both personal and global issues. The science content area provides many laboratory-based opportunities to achieve scientific literacy through a diverse offering of core and elective courses.

So what courses should students take? Three credits of science are required for graduation at Essex High School. College bound students should take a minimum of four years of science.

Some course titles include level designations related to the rigor of the course:
• 300 level (also referred to as AP, Honors, or Advanced) courses are for students who have demonstrated exceptional ability in and a love for the subject matter.
• 200 level courses are for students who have demonstrated a high performance record in the subject matter and who will benefit from courses that have a rigorous curriculum and challenging pace.
• 100 level courses are for students who may choose not to continue the study of the subject matter after having met their graduation requirements.
• Courses with no level assigned are open to students who have taken any indicated prerequisites.

Grades 9 & 10
Core course placement in Science in 9th and 10th grade is based on student readiness and interests, but does not limit student access to courses in grades 11 and 12. All courses are designed to generate strong science literacy for all students.

Students interested in multiple AP science courses as 11th and 12th graders may want to take two science core courses in either Grade 9 or 10. This is known as “doubling” and is available with a science teacher recommendation. Students will also want to consider how their math courses align with their choices for science when deciding whether to double.

Grades 11 & 12
Course placement in 11th and 12th grade should be based on a student’s career interest and the competitive nature of their college choices. Doubling in 11th and 12th grade is quite common because of the wide variety of science electives.