Support for Students Who Need Extra Help to Be Promoted

  • By the end of September, each school must give parents the name and phone number of the school staff (in addition to their child’s teacher) whom they can call if they are concerned about their child’s progress. 

    In the middle of each marking period, the school must send “warning notices” to parents of students who are in danger of failing. The report card schedule is here

    By the middle of October, teachers must identify students at risk of not meeting grade-level standards and requirements. Teachers must notify parents of the problem in writing. The school may consider a variety of options to help the student succeed, such as:

    • tutoring during or after school
    • a change in schedule or teacher
    • a referral to community-based support services.

    By the end of term 2, schools must send written notices to parents of students who remain at risk of being retained in their current grade. From February through June, schools must maintain written contact with those parents to inform them of their child’s progress. Copies of these letters are kept on file.

    Educational Proficiency Plan

    High school students who do not meet or exceed the Proficient performance level (a minimum scaled score of 240) on the grade 10 MCAS tests/retests in English Language Arts (ELA) or Mathematics must have an Educational Proficiency Plan (EPP) to help them reach proficiency. The Head of School is responsible for assigning staff to design, implement, and coordinate EPPs. The EPP includes:

    • A review of the student’s strengths and weaknesses based on MCAS and other assessment results, coursework, grades, and teacher input;
    • The courses the student must take and complete in grades 11 and 12 in the relevant content area(s); and
    • A description of the assessments the student will take each year to determine whether he or she is making progress toward proficiency.

    Students who have EPPs must complete the EPP requirements and meet or exceed the Needs Improvement threshold (a scaled score of at least 220) on the ELA and Mathematics grade 10 MCAS tests (or be awarded an MCAS Performance Appeal for that subject matter) to graduate.

    • More information on the EPP:
    • Please ask your child’s Head of School for further information about an EPP.

    Acceleration Academies

    Acceleration Academies take place during February and April vacation weeks. They offer intensive instruction to students in grades 3–12 who need extra support in ELA and math at the district’s lowest-performing schools.

    Summer Learning Academies

    Students in grades K-12 are invited to attend the Summer Learning Academies based on these priorities:

    1. Students who have not met BPS grade-level benchmarks, or are in danger of not being promoted to the next grade
    2. Students who could benefit from a rigorous summer experience to make gains and be prepared for the next year
    3. Students who can reasonably make enough academic gains in five weeks to be promoted to the next grade
    4. Students who do not qualify for ESY and are not enrolled in district-run EL programming. 

    High School Credit Recovery

    Students in grades 9-12 who have failed one or more major subject courses and who have not been absent more than 30 days during the regular school year may enroll in a High School Credit Recovery Summer Learning Academy. These programs give students the chance to recover course credit and earn points toward promotion and graduation. All major courses are offered. Students also have access to online courses, which allows students to retake courses they have failed. Students may take up to two in-person or online courses.

    Repeating a Grade

    The Promotion Policy states that students should not remain in elementary school (grades 1–5) for more than six years or in middle school (grades 6–8) for more than four years. However, a student may have to repeat a grade more than once, following review by the principal, teacher, parent, and support staff, if the student:

    1. does not attend the Summer Learning Academies as required; OR 
    2. has not met all course requirements.

    The principal/Head of School has the final authority to make decisions on promotion and retention.

    Alternative Routes to a High School Diploma

    Boston Public Schools offers several programs to give adults and high school-age students who have left school a second chance to earn a high school diploma or HiSET (high school equivalency credential).