Course Information Sheet - Mountain View Los Altos District

Course Title: Biology Honors
Instructors: Budd, Cardellini, Stoehr
UC/CSU: Lab science, 10 units
Textbook and other learning resource: Biology by Cecie
Starr (Brooks/Cole Pub.)
What Students Can Expect From This Course
Course Description:
Biology is the study of living organisms. This course is designed to
help the student better understand the relationships between organisms and
their environment. It will be conducted at an advanced rate compared to
general biology and students are expected to work accordingly. Topics
covered in this college preparatory biology course include: the nature of
science, the characteristics of living things, biochemistry and energetics, cell
structure and function, evolution, Mendelian and molecular genetics, animal
systems, and ecology. An inquiry-based method of learning is used as well
as reading, note taking (lectures and book), lab experiments, and group/class
Assessment and Grading:
Per BP/AR 5121, teachers of the same course are expected to align their grading and assessment practices
in the following areas: (a) the weight of assignments for the various categories of assessment, (b)
homework policies, late/make up policies, opportunities for revision, extra credit and grading scales, (c)
degrees of proficiency. In addition, the policy specifies that “group work is to be considered an essential
part of the learning experience, and that grades earned through group participation are to reflect an
individual student’s achievement on a designated academic standard and to be awarded to individuals rather
than to groups of students. Extra credit is to be given only when it supports student achievement of
academic standards for the course and when it is equitable for all students.
Grading practices are determined by course teams. All
teachers of this course will determine grades as defined below:
1. Weight of assignments and/or components of the grade is approximately:
35%: Tests, (unit/chapter), Quizzes
25%: Lab Reports
25%: Homework and Classwork/Presentations
15%: Final Semester Assessment
2. Grading Scale
A = 100%-90%
C = 79%-70%
B = 89%-80
D = 69%-60
F = 59% and below
3. Homework policy: nightly homework could include reading, taking notes,
worksheets, lab reports, researching topics online, and/or reviewing for
4. Late work, missing work and opportunities for revision: Late homework
will not be accepted. A 50% penalty will be given to labs and reading
notes turned in one day late.
5. Group work: while students often work collaboratively on laboratory and
other assignments, each student is required to submit his/her own written
report for credit.
6. Extra credit: students should not expect any extra credit opportunities.
7. Proficiency is determined by how well a student achieves the expectations
for an assignment. Both summative and formative assessments will be
8. Grade Book Update Policy: grades will be posted every 2-3 weeks on the
Student Information System (SIS)
What Is Expected Of The Student
Daily Assignments:
Laboratory work, discussion, group activities, and lectures will be utilized to
support the Expected School Wide Learning Results (ESLRs) and California
Biology State Standards.
ABSENCES: An “unexcused absence” is an absence in excess of a 30-minute period occurring in a given
class. Students may not exceed 14 unexcused absences across their entire schedule. A full day, unexcused
absence counts as 5, 6 or 7 absences depending on how many classes a student carries toward the total of
14. On the 15th unexcused absence, students may be referred to an alternative educational program/site
pursuant to the District’s involuntary transfer policy (AR/OP 5113).
TARDIES: Students may not exceed 19 unexcused tardies across their entire schedule. An unexcused tardy
is an absence from class from when the bell rings until up to 30 minutes of a class period. At the 15th
unexcused tardy, there will be a mandatory parent conference with the student’s Assistant Principal. This
conference will be scheduled to occur the morning after the family is contacted by the school. At the
A New ERA at LAHS – Empower, Respect, Achieve
We, at Los Altos High School value a learning environment in which students and staff support one another in a spirit of unity and mutual respect. We are committed to
continuous learning and the appreciation of knowledge in the classroom and beyond. We value our diverse pathways and empower students with the skills they need to achieve
their goals after graduation.
student/parent conference, consequences for continued tardiness are discussed and the student is assigned to
Saturday School. An attendance contract will also be signed at this meeting. Failure to attend Saturday
School may result in a transfer to an alternative educational program/site.
1. When absent, it is YOUR responsibility to find out what you missed from
the teacher or fellow student.
2. Make-up exams (for excused absences only) will be given in class on the
day that you return or after school, at the discretion of the teacher. If you
are absent the day before a test and miss the classroom review, you will
still be required to take the test when you return.
3. Assignments (i.e. homework, lab reports, etc.) will be due on the teacher’s
specified day and must be ready to pass in when the tardy bell rings.
Work turned in after that will receive late credit. There are no excuses
(finishing last question, putting name on it, etc.).
4. Students should NOT miss lab days. Lab experiments take time to set up
and to do, therefore if you are absent, even if it is excused, you may not be
able to make it up. You are still responsible for the material covered in
the lab. If you have a doctor or dentist appointment on block days,
change it. These appointments are made months in advance and you
know your schedule.
5. Students who fail to show up for a make-up test or lab will not have the
opportunity to make it up again and will earn a score of zero.
Classroom Rules:
1. Each student must maintain and bring to class daily all required materials.
2. Completion of work is due in the number of days missed, unless the
assignment was given prior to the absence (for instance, a tests will be
given on the day you return to class).
3. If you miss class due to a previously excused school related meeting,
(band, singing, athletics), but you are on campus at any time during the
day, the work due is due. I expect you to turn the work in by the end of
7th period.
4. There will be NO EATING, NO DRINKING, and NO GUM
CHEWING allowed in class for safety purposes. Dispose of any food in
the compost bin.
5. Take care of all restroom/bathroom needs before class; otherwise you will
be charged a tardy.
6. Always demonstrate respect for your classmates, teacher, and yourself.
Our classroom is a place where people work together towards a common
goal in an atmosphere of mutual trust and respect. As young adults, you
know what behaviors are appropriate in such a setting. Listen to each
other carefully and speak when it is your turn. Also, learn each other’s
7. Be responsible for keeping you work area clean. If you find or create a
mess at your desk (or write on it) or in lab areas, clean and straighten it
completely before you leave. Lab equipment given to you at the start of
an activity is clean; it is expected to be returned in the same way. Please
be careful with all laboratory equipment and class materials (including
your textbook). If you are careless with the equipment you may be
charged for it.
8. All rules from the student handbook apply in class (dress code, no
electronic devices, cheating, etc). Know these rules!
9. Sunglasses and hats/hoods (headgear) are accessory items and are NOT to
be worn during class. Remove jewelry for labs and pull back long hair.
Cheating Policy:
The Board expects that students will not cheat, lie, plagiarize or commit other acts of academic dishonesty.
Examples of cheating include: anyone who copies another’s work or turns in someone else’s ideas as his or
her own, collaboration with another student or students could be considered cheating if students are
expected to complete an assignment independently, copying homework, allowing someone else to copy
your work, plagiarism, copying or allowing others to copy from another’s exam, improperly obtaining
and/or using tests, questions, or answer keys, using unauthorized notes/materials or electronic equipment
(calculators, cell phones, etc.), with greater access to the Internet and electronic sources, students need to be
very clear about their responsibilities in using these tools with integrity. Check with your teachers if you are
unsure or unclear about his/her expectations regarding the use of the Internet.
Help and Contact Information
Tom Budd
Lisa Cardellini 960-8803
Greg Stoehr
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
room 707
room 709
room 708
A New ERA at LAHS – Empower, Respect, Achieve
We, at Los Altos High School value a learning environment in which students and staff support one another in a spirit of unity and mutual respect. We are committed to
continuous learning and the appreciation of knowledge in the classroom and beyond. We value our diverse pathways and empower students with the skills they need to achieve
their goals after graduation.