US and Virginia Government Mr. Bishop Course Syllabus 2012-2013

US and Virginia Government
Course Syllabus 2012-2013
Room: 403 Home Base: 207
Mr. Bishop
Course Description: This course examines the structures of government and the economy
in the United States. The balance and separation of powers within the US Government
and the powers inherent to each branch and level, are emphasized. Democratic values and
responsible participation in the community are stressed throughout the course. The
United States’ political and economic roles in the global community are also analyzed. Basic
principles inherent in the Constitution of the United States, the Declaration of
Independence, the Constitution of Virginia, the Virginia Declaration of Rights and the
Virginia Statute of Religious Freedom are examined and related to everyday life. Because
of the conceptual nature of government and the constant interaction of current affairs,
the manner in which the course is taught may vary from year to year
Main Topics:
1, What is Government?
2. Foundations of the American
Political System and Constitution
3. The US Constitution
4. Federalism
5. Organization of powers of
The national government
6. State and local government
7. Comparative government and
8. Practical Citizenship
9. Influencing Government
10. Citizenship and civil rights
This course provides one of the credits required for a standard or advanced studies
diploma. Additionally, this course is a requirement for graduation.
Grading: A variety of graded assignments will figure into your nine-week, semester and
final grades. All grades will be weighted according to their complexity, length and amount
of content covered. Assessments(Quizzes, Tests, Projects) will account for 80% of your
quarter grade while homework/classroom assignments(vocabulary, warm-ups, etc.) will
account for 20% of your quarter grade. Semester and Final Grades will be determined by
quarter and exam grades. Exams account for 20% of the semester and final grade.
Class Participation; Students will be given 100 points at the beginning of every quarter
and can only lose those points. Possible ways to lose points include not being prepared for
class with the appropriate materials, not having homework completed, not participating in
class discussion and arriving to class with an unexcused tardy. Class participation is
essential to this course and ALL students are expected to partake in discussion,
questioning, and group activities. The participation grade will be part of the students’
homework/class work grade.
Loudoun County’s Grading scale will be used to determine test, quiz and the nine-week
letter grades:
100-98 A+
97-93 A
92-90 A-
89-87 B+
86-83 B
82-80 B-
79-77 C+
76-73 C
72-70 C-
69-67 D+
66-63 D
62-60 D-
59-0 F
Makeup work: The responsibility to collect any make up work, including class notes, that
has accumulated due to an absence, falls on the shoulders of the student. Majority of the
makeup work can be found by visiting Mr. Bishop’s web site and/or on Mr. Bishop’s Loudoun
Vision page.
Tests: If you miss school the day of a test or quiz, you will be expected to make up that
quiz or test as soon as possible. Open Lunch and Flex are available times to make up a quiz
or test. It is essential that you be in class on test days!
Late work: All work that is to be handed in must meet the identified deadline or points will
be deducted. Every day an assignment is late a letter grade will be deducted (10 points).
Daily homework grades will not be accepted late. *If an assignment is spot checked for a
Class Participation grade, it will not be accepted late.
Materials: US Government
1. Notebook: Must be a 3-ring binder with 8 ½ X11 paper. All paperwork and notes given in
class must be included in this folder. All units in the notebook are to be covered with a
table of contents page
2. Textbook: Magruder’s American Government. Textbook is an essential part of the class.
Please bring your textbook everyday to class.
3. Pen/Pencil w/highlighters optional.
Rules & Procedures: All County and School Rules will apply within the classroom.
Expectations of the student are to follow all county and school rules. Failure to meet
these expectations will lead to phone calls to parents and disciplinary action.
I encourage all parents to attend Back to School night on Monday, September 10th!!
I have read and understand the U.S. & VA Government Syllabus:
Parent Signature
Parent Email
Student Signature