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Student Learning (Parent Student Handbook)

2018-19 Parent Student Handbook

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Question

Department / Office

Phone

  • What programs are available to support English Learners?
  • My school does not provide interpreters for me, whom can I contact?

Contact your child’s teacher or English Learner Services.

(559) 457-3928

  • If my child fails a class or is not making progress, can he/she be retained (held back)?
  • What clubs or sports programs are available for my child?
  • What are the required state tests that my (elementary, middle, and high school) children will need to take?

Contact your child’s school.

See school directory

  • In high school, what classes will my child need to take to be ready for college?
  • What are “a-g” classes?
  • How do I enroll my child in Career Technical Education programs?

Contact your child’s school to speak to a counselor.

See school directory

  • I have questions about my child’s IEP, whom can I contact?

Contact your child’s school.

See school directory

  • How can I keep track of my child’s progress in school?
  • What is the ATLAS Parent Portal?

Contact your child’s teacher.

See school directory

Services to English Learners

Consultation With Parents/Guardians

C.C.R., Title 5, Chap. 11, Sub Chap. 4, Sec. 11309; E.C. 52173; A.R. 6174

Parents/Guardians may choose to have their students participate in an alternative program such as bilingual and dual language immersion programs by requesting the program of their choice at their home school. For bilingual programs, parents/guardians will be referred to the closest school where this is offered if the program is not available at the home school. Dual language immersion programs are available at selected schools and are accessed through a lottery process.

Assessment Requirements for English Learner (EL) Students

E.C. 52164.1; A.R. 6174

The California Education Code requires that schools identify the language(s) spoken at home by each student. This information is collected through the Home Language Survey, which is completed by a parent/guardian for each new enrolling student. The Home Language Survey is only filled out one time.

In accordance with California State Regulations, the District must assess the English language proficiency for all students whose home language is other than English. This test is called the English Language Proficiency Assessments for California (ELPAC) (C.C.R., Title 5, Chap. 11, Sub Chap. 7.5, Sec. 11511.5; E.C. 48985) Parents/Guardians receive a Notification Letter informing them when their child is classified as an EL. This letter also notifies parents/guardians that students who are learning English as a second language will be placed in a Standards-based Content and Language program, where instruction is offered overwhelmingly in English. Parents/Guardians may choose an alternative program by asking at their home school.

Notice of Reassessment of Language Skills

E.C. 52164.3 (a)

Each school district shall reassess pupils whose primary language is other than English, whether they are designated as Limited English Proficient (LEP), or Fluent English Proficient (FEP), when a parent/guardian, teacher, or school site administrator claims that there is a reasonable doubt about the accuracy of the pupil’s designation.

E.C. 52164.3 (b)

In all cases of reassessment, the parent/guardian of the pupil shall be notified of the results. This notice shall be given orally when school personnel have reason to think that a written notice will not be understood.

State Testing Required for English Learner Students

U.S.C., Title 20, Chap. 70, Sub Chap. I, Sec. 6312, 6316; A.R. 0520.2

English Learners participate in the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP). In addition, all Spanish-speaking English Learners who: (1) have been enrolled in United States schools less than twelve (12) months; or (2) receive instruction in Spanish in a bilingual classroom; or (3) are enrolled in a dual-immersion program are required to be assessed in Spanish as well as English.

The progress of English Learners is assessed by Fresno Unified as required by state and federal law, consistent with the district’s Master Plan for English Learners. The progress of English Learners in acquiring English is measured annually through the English Language Proficiency Assessments for California (ELPAC).

Reclassification of English Language Learners

C.P.M., Title 5, Sec. 11303

The reclassification procedures used to determine when an EL student is Fluent English Proficient-Redesignated (FEP-R) shall follow the guidelines established by the California State Department of Education (E.C. 313(d)). The requirement for reclassification shall consist of the following criteria:

  1. Assessment of English language proficiency using the States English Language Assessment, as provided for by E.C. 60810 pursuant to the procedures for conducting that test provided in Subchapter 7.5 (commencing with section 11510);
  2. Comparison of performance in basic skills as indicated by the Fresno Unified School District’s Basic Literacy Assessments;
  3. Participation of the pupil’s classroom teacher and any other certificated staff with direct responsibility for teaching or placement decisions of the pupil; and
  4. Parental involvement through:
    1. Notice to parent(s)/guardian(s) of language reclassification and placement, including a description of the reclassification process and the parent’s/guardian’s opportunity to participate; and
    2. Encouragement of the participation of parent(s)/guardian(s) in the school district’s reclassification procedure, including seeking their opinion and consultation during the reclassification process.

Monitoring Fluent English Proficient (FEP) Students

C.C.R., Title 5, Chap. 11, Sub Chap. 4, Sec. 11304-11305

Districts are required to monitor for four (4) years the progress of English Learners who have been redesignated to ensure adequate progress is maintained. Districts are required to provide evidence that monitoring has taken place.

Translations

E.C. 48985, 51101.1

When fifteen (15) percent or more of the pupils enrolled in a public school that provides instruction in kindergarten or any of grades 1 through 12 speak a single primary language other than English, as determined from the census data submitted to the Department of Education pursuant to Section 52164 in the preceding year, all notices, reports, statements, or records sent to the parent/guardian of any such pupil by the school or school district shall, in addition to being written in English, be written in such primary language, and may be responded to either in English or the primary language.

Migrant Education

E.C. 54444.2; B.P. 6175; A.R. 6175

The Superintendent or designee shall plan for the late enrollment of migrant students and shall ensure that all migrant students are correctly identified and placed; that services are coordinated with other district resources such as health screenings and programs for English language learners; and that records are acquired, updated, and provided to other districts in a timely manner. The Superintendent or designee shall convene a district parent/guardian advisory council to actively involve parents/guardians in planning, operating, and evaluating the migrant children program. Advisory council members shall receive training to help them carry out their responsibilities.

For more information call 457-3984, Migrant Education Office

English Learner Advisory Committee (ELAC) Participation

One important way for parents to participate in schools is to join the English Learner Advisory Committee (ELAC). These committees are designed to increase the participation of parents of English Learner students. The purpose of ELAC is to advise the principal and staff on the school’s program for English Learners. ELAC is also responsible for assisting in the development of the school needs assessment, language census, and ways to make parents aware of the importance of regular school attendance. It is not necessary to be a parent of an English Leaner to join ELAC.

Members of ELAC can also serve as the school representative to the District English Leaner Advisory Committee (DELAC). The purpose of DELAC is to advise the school district’s governing board on district programs, goals, and objectives for programs and services for English Learners.

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Special Education

Fresno Unified School District serves students with disabilities from birth through the age of 21 in compliance with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) is a federal law that requires school districts to provide a free appropriate public education to eligible children with disabilities. A “free appropriate public education” (FAPE) means special education (specially designed instruction) and related services are to be provided as described in an Individualized Education Program (IEP) at no cost to the parent/guardian/surrogate parent of children with disabilities or an adult student with disabilities ages 18 through 21.

Child Find

What is Child Find?

The purpose of Child Find is to identify, locate, and evaluate children between the ages of birth through 21 years of age who are suspected of having or a disability, in order to provide appropriate special education services designed to meet the student’s educational needs at no cost to the family.

What is Special Education?

Special education is instruction designed to meet the unique learning strengths and needs of the individual student with disabilities from ages birth through 21 years of age. It is defined as:

  • Specially designed instruction
  • At no cost to the parents
  • To meet the unique needs of a child with a disability.

Special education services may be provided in a variety of educational settings. Special Education services are required by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) to be delivered in the least restrictive environment.

Who is Eligible for Services?

A student must be evaluated and identified as having a disability to be eligible for special education programs and related services. The eligibility disability categories are as follows:

  • Autistic-Like Behaviors/Autism
  • Deaf-Blindness
  • Deafness
  • Emotional Disturbance
  • Hearing Impairment
  • Intellectual Disability
  • Multiple Disabilities
  • Orthopedic Impairment
  • Other Health Impairment
  • Specific Learning Disability
  • Speech or Language Impairment
  • Traumatic Brain Injury
  • Visual Impairment

How Can Children Be Referred?

A written referral may be made by a parent/guardian or by any person concerned about a child. Parent/Guardian involvement and agreement is obtained prior to any further action. Information is confidential and the privacy of children and parents is protected.

Can a Child Attending a Private School Be Referred?

School districts are required to conduct Child Find for all parentally placed children with disabilities attending private schools within the district’s boundaries. Once the child is located and identified, the district where the private school is located upon parental consent, to conduct an initial evaluation.

Contact Information:

  • For children ages birth-2, contact the Lori Ann Infant Program at (559) 248-7236.
  • For children ages 3 through 21, contact the Department of Special Education at (559) 457-3220.

Citations: E.C. 56300 and 56301

Identification & Evaluation of Individuals for Special Education

The Governing Board recognizes the need to actively seek out and evaluate district residents from birth through age twenty-one (21) who are suspected of having a disability in order to provide them with appropriate educational opportunities in accordance with state and federal law. The Superintendent or designee shall identify processes to determine when an individual’s academic, behavioral or other difficulties may be related to suspected disabilities and shall establish systematic procedures for special education, referral, assessment, identification, instructional planning, implementation, review, and triennial assessment. A student shall be referred for special and related services only after the resources of the regular education program have been considered and used where appropriate.

The Superintendent or designee shall consult with appropriate representatives of private school children with disabilities on how to identify, locate and evaluate these children.

The Superintendent or designee shall notify parents/guardians/adult students with disabilities in writing of their rights related to identification, referral, assessment, instructional planning, implementation, and review, including the District’s procedures for initiating a referral for assessment to identify individuals with a suspected disability. For assessment purposes, staff shall use appropriate tests to identify specific information about the student’s abilities in skill areas. In addition, staff shall use multiple measures, including direct observation, to study the effect of interventions or accommodations/modifications to the regular instructional program. In addition, staff shall consider the student’s personal history, development and adaptive behavior.

Citations: (E.C. 56301; B.P. and A.R. 6164.4)

Procedural Safeguards

What are Procedural Safeguards?

Procedural Safeguards provide you as the parent/guardian/surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/adult student with disabilities ages 18 through 21 with an overview of the educational rights of children with disabilities.

The Notice of Procedural Safeguards must be provided to you:

  • When you request a copy
  • The first time your child is referred for a special education assessment
  • Each time you are given an assessment plan to evaluate your child
  • Upon receipt of the first state or due process complaint in a school year
  • When a decision is made to make a removal that constitutes a change of placement

Who would I contact for a copy of the Procedural Safeguards?

Contact the Fresno Unified School District’s Department of Special Education at 559-457-3220 to request a complete copy of the “Special Education Rights of Parents and Children: Notice of Procedural Safeguards” or download a copy from our website at
https://www.fresnounified.org/dept/specialeducation/Pages/parent-documents.aspx

Citations: 20 USC 1415[d]; 34 CFR 300.504; EC 56301[d] [2], EC 56321, and 56341.1[g][1]

Prior Written Notice for Special Education

The District must inform the parent/guardian/surrogate parent of children with disabilities/ adult student with disabilities about proposed evaluations of the child in a written notice that is understandable and in their native language or other mode of communication, unless it is clearly not feasible to do so. This notice must also be given when the District proposes or refuses to initiate a change in the identification, assessment, or educational placement of the child with special needs or a provision of a free appropriate public education.

The Prior Written Notice must include the following:

  1. A description of the actions proposed or refused by the school district;
  2. An explanation of why the action was proposed or refused;
  3. A description of each assessment procedure, record, or report the agency used as a basis for the action proposed or refused;
  4. A statement that a child with a disability has protection under the procedural safeguards;
  5. Sources for parents to contact to obtain assistance in understanding the provisions related to the actions.
  6. A description of other options that the IEP team considered and the reasons those options were rejected.
  7. A description of any other factors relevant to the action proposed or refused.

If the notice is not in regard to an initial referral for assessment, the notice must provide a statement that parent/guardian/surrogate parent/adult student with disabilities have protection under procedural safeguards; information on how to obtain a copy of described procedural safeguards; and sources of additional assistance in understanding the procedural safeguards.

Citations: 20 USC 1415[b][3], [c] and (4), 1415[c][1], 1414[b][1]; 34 CFR 300.503; EC 56321; EC 56329 and 56506[a]; A.R. 6159.1

Parental Notification & Consent for Special Education

The parent/guardian/surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/adult student with disabilities must give informed, written consent before the child’s first special education assessment can proceed. S/he must also give informed, written consent before the school district can provide special education and related services if the child is eligible.

In the case of reevaluations, the school district must document reasonable attempts to obtain the consent of the parent/guardian/ surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/adult student with disabilities. If the parent/guardian/surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/adult student with disabilities does not respond to these attempts, the District may proceed with the reevaluation without the consent of the parent/guardian/surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/adult student with disabilities.

The parent/guardian/surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/adult student with disabilities must be given opportunities to participate in any decision-making meeting regarding the child’s special education program. The parent/guardian/surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/adult student with disabilities has the right to participate in Individualized Education Program (IEP) team meetings about the identification (eligibility), assessment, or educational placement of the child, and other matters relating to the child’s free appropriate public education (FAPE), including all program options.

The parent/guardian/surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/adult student with disabilities shall be notified of the IEP meeting early enough to ensure they can attend. The IEP meeting shall be scheduled at a mutually agreed-upon time and place. The notice of the meeting shall indicate the purpose, time, and location of the meeting, who shall be in attendance, participation of others with special knowledge, and consideration of postsecondary goals and transition services for students aged 16 and older.

A written request for an IEP meeting by the parent/guardian/surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/adult student with disabilities will be held within 30 days from the date of receipt of the written request. If a parent/guardian/ surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/adult student with disabilities makes an oral request, the local educational agency (LEA) shall notify the parent/guardian/surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/adult student with disabilities of the need for a written request and the procedures for filing such a request.

The parent/guardian/surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/adult student with disabilities must give written consent before a functional behavioral assessment to address the child’s serious behavioral issues can be conducted. Whenever a behavioral intervention plan is developed, the parent/guardian/surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/adult student with disabilities and the behavioral intervention case manager or qualified designee may make minor modifications without an IEP team meeting. The parent/guardian/surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/adult student with disabilities shall be notified of the need for modification and shall be able to review the existing program evaluation data prior to implementing the modification. The parent/guardian/surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/adult student with disabilities shall be informed of the right to question any modification to the plan through the IEP procedures.

The parent/guardian/surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/adult student with disabilities, or the local educational agency (LEA), has the right to participate in the development of the IEP and to initiate their intent to electronically record the proceedings of the IEP team meetings. At least 24 hours prior to the meeting, the parent/guardian/surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/adult student with disabilities shall notify the members of the IEP team of their intent to record a meeting. If the parent/guardian/surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/adult student with disabilities does not consent to the LEA recording an IEP meeting, the meeting shall not be recorded.

Citations: 20 USC 1401[3], 1412[a][3], 1414[a][1][D] and 1414[c], 1414[d] [1]B–[d][1][D]; 34 CFR 300.300, 300.111, 321; EC 56301; 56321[c] and [d], 56341[b][g][1], 56341.5, 56343[c], 56346, 56506; 5 CCR 3052; A.R. 6159 and 6159.4

Written permission to seek Medi-Cal reimbursement for health related Special Education services provide to Medi-Cal enrollees

(34 CFR Section 200 (IDEA) and 300.154[d][2][iv][A & B]).

Annual Notification

Fresno Unified School District (FUSD) participates in a federal program that reimburses FUSD for a small portion of costs in providing health-related special education services to Medi-Cal eligible students while in the school environment. Any funds received are reinvested into special education supports and services to benefit FUSD students and their families. By this notification, please be advised of the following: 1) In order to receive reimbursement, the district must first receive written consent from a parent or guardian to disclose student information or records to Medi-Cal regarding the health-related special education and related services. 2) This disclosure is for the limited purpose of accessing benefits and billing for eligible health-related services provided to a student. 3) You are not required to sign-up or enroll in Medi-Cal in order for your child to receive health-related special education and related services. 4) Your student’s and your family’s Medi-Cal benefits will never be affected in any way. There is no cost to you or your child. 5) You have the right to withdraw your consent at any time and it will not affect the special education services provided to your child. Please contact the district at 457-3220 if you have any questions.

Access to Educational Records

The parent/guardian/surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/adult student with disabilities has a right to inspect and review all of the child’s education records without unnecessary delay including prior to an IEP meeting or before a due process hearing. The school district must provide access to the parent/guardian/surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/adult student with disabilities to records and copies, if requested, within five (5) business days after the request has been made orally or in writing.

Citations: 20 USC 1415 (b); EC 49060, 56043[n], 56501[b][3], and 56504

Due Process

The parent/guardian/surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/ adult student with disabilities has the right to request an impartial due process hearing regarding the identification, assessment, and educational placement of the child or the provision of a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE). The request for a due process hearing must be filed within two years from the date that the parent/guardian/ surrogate parent of a child with disabilities/adult student with disabilities knew or should have known about the alleged action that forms the basis of the due process complaint.

Prior to filing for a due process hearing, the school district shall be provided the opportunity to resolve the matter by convening a resolution session, which is a meeting between the parents and the relevant members of the IEP team who have specific knowledge of the facts identified in the due process hearing request.

A written request for a due process hearing is filed with Office of Administrative Hearings and must include the following information:

  1. Name of the child
  2. Address of the residence of the child
  3. Name of the school the child is attending
  4. In the case of a homeless child, available contact information for the child and the name of the school the child is attending, and
  5. A description of the nature of the problem, including facts relating to the problem(s) and a proposed resolution of the problem(s)

Federal and state laws require that either party filing for a due process hearing must provide a copy of the written request to the other party.

Citations: 20 USC 1415[b][6][h] [f][1][B]; 34 CFR 300.507, 300.510; EC 56501, 56502 (a), and 56505[f][l]

Additional Information

Community Advisory Committee for Special Education (CAC)

Community Advisory Committee for Special Education (CAC) is a volunteer group composed predominately of parents of children with special needs who attend school within the Fresno Unified School District. CAC is a group of parents, school personnel, agency, representatives and other community members who work together to ensure that children with special needs are receiving the best education available. Fresno Unified is required by law to have a CAC.

The CAC general and executive committee meetings are open to the public. The CAC also has several subcommittees that include Procedural Safeguards for Students, Mental Health, and other subcommittees that meet regularly and are open to interested members of the community. Dates, times, locations and agendas of CAC meetings are publicly posted at Fresno Unified School District sites, the Education Center at Tulare and “M” streets, and the Kisling Education Center where the Special Education office is located. CAC dates, times, locations, agendas and the CAC parent handbook can also be found on and on the special education website at www.fresnounified.org/dept/specialeducation/Pages/Community-Advisory-Committee.aspx

Where can I get more help?

When you have a concern about your child’s education, it is important that you call or contact your child’s teacher(s) or administrator(s) to talk about your child and any problems you see. When you have a concern, this informal conversation often solves the problem and helps to maintain open communication. Special Education staff at your child’s school can also answer questions about your child’s special education services/program and the Procedural Safeguards. Or, you may contact the Department of Special Education at (559) 457-3220.

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General Education Services for Students With Disabilities

Section 504 of the 1973 Rehabilitation Act

BP 6164.6

The Fresno Unified School District provides a free and appropriate public education designed to meet the educational needs of students with disabilities as adequately as the needs of non-disabled students are met.

The District provides accommodations for identified students in the general education population who have a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits a major life activity (like learning or working). A few examples of physical or mental impairments may include:

  • Diabetes;
  • Seizure Disorders;
  • Attention Deficit Disorders;
  • Auditory Processing Deficit;
  • Asthma;
  • Cerebral Palsy;
  • Depression;
  • Eating Disorders; and/or
  • Auto-Immune Illnesses.

Once a Section 504 referral is made, a school site team of individuals (who are knowledgeable about the student) is convened to determine Section 504 eligibility. For all eligible students, a 504 Accommodation Plan is written. Students who are receiving Special Education services on an Individualized Education Program (IEP) generally do not need a 504 Accommodation Plan. This would be a duplication of service.

Procedural safeguards and protections for students receiving accommodations through Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 can be found in Fresno Unified School District Board Policy and Administrative Regulations Section 6164.6. For questions and information on Section 504 please contact 559-457-3258. The 504 Office is located at the Special Education office.

Filing for Due Process Complaint for Students With Disabilities

How do I request a due process hearing?

You need to file a written request for a due process hearing. Parents should use the OAH (Office of Administrative Hearings) Form. You or your representative need to submit the following information in your request:

  1. Name of the child;
  2. Address of the residence of the child;
  3. Name of the school the child is attending; and
  4. A description of the nature of the problem, including facts relating to the problem(s) and a proposed resolution to the problem(s) to the extent the parent knows what would solve the problem.

If the request does not contain enough information, the due process request can be dismissed. The district must hold a resolution session within 15 days of receipt of the due process complaint unless there is a written waiver by both parties. C.C.R., Title 5, Sec. 3052

School Discipline and Placement Procedures for Students With Disabilities

Can my child be suspended or expelled?

Children with disabilities may be suspended or placed in other alternative interim settings or other settings to the same extent these options would be used for children without disabilities.

If a child exceeds ten (10) days of suspension a Manifestation Determination Meeting must be held to determine whether the child’s misconduct is caused by the disability. When a student is recommended for expulsion, the Manifestation Determination Meeting must take place within 10 days of the date of disciplinary action. U.S.C., Title 20, Sec. 1415 (k)

As a parent/guardian, you will be invited to participate as a member of this Manifestation Determination Meeting. The school district may be required to develop an assessment plan to address the misconduct or, if your child has a behavior intervention plan, review and modify the plan, as necessary.

If the Manifestation Determination Meeting concludes that the misconduct was not a manifestation of your child’s disability, the school district may take disciplinary action, such as expulsion, in the same manner as it would for a child without disabilities.

If you disagree with the Manifestation Determination Meeting’s decision, you may request an expedited due process hearing from the US Office for Civil Rights of Education’s Special Education Office of Administrative Hearings Office.

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Graduation Requirements

Refer to the current High School Course Guide for complete, updated information at www.fresnounified.org

Grades

E.C. 49067 (a)

The Governing Board of each school district shall prescribe regulations requiring the evaluation of each student’s achievement for each marking period and requiring a conference with, or a written report to, the parent/guardian of each student whenever it becomes evident to the teacher that the student is in danger of failing a course. The refusal of the parent/guardian to attend the conference, or to respond to the written report, shall not preclude failing the student at the end of the grading period.

230 credits are required for high school graduation as established by the California Board of Education.

The following table illustrates the minimum graduation requirements of the Fresno Unified School District.

Five (5) credits are granted for successfully completing each semester of each course in which the students receive a D grade or better.

Subjects Required & Total Number of Credits Per Subject to Minimally Meet High School Graduation Requirements

English Language Arts 40

American Government 5

U.S. History 10

Modern World History 10

Biological Science 10

Physical Science 10

3rd Year Science 10

Algebra 10

Geometry 10

3rd Year Math 10

Physical Education 20

Fine Arts or Foreign Language 10

Economics 5

Electives * 70

TOTAL 230

*All courses taken in excess of the minimum required in any subject area will count toward the fulfillment of ‘elective’ credits toward the 230 total.

Courses Earning High School Credit

Currently Algebra and Foreign Language are offered at all middle schools. Middle school students can enter high school with up to 30 credits of high school graduation credit; i.e., Algebra 10 credits and two years of foreign language, 20 credits. The courses students take to fulfill the Subject Requirement must be certified by the University as meeting the requirement and must be included on your school’s University of California (UC) A-G certified course list.

*ALL STUDENTS MUST EARN A “C” GRADE OR HIGHER IN UC CERTIFIED COURSES. “D” AND “F” GRADES DO NOT QUALIFY AS GRADES FOR “A-G ELIGIBILITY”. (See A-G Courses below).

Required “A-G” Courses

Students must complete all “a-g” courses (with grade of C or better) to meet the minimum requirements for UC/CSU eligibility:

  1. History/Social Science – 2 YEARS REQUIRED
    Two (2) years of history/social science, including one (1) year of world history, cultures and geography; and one (1) year of U.S. history or one-half (1/2) year of U.S. history and one-half (1/2) year of Civics or American Government.
  2. English – 4 YEARS REQUIRED
    Four (4) years of college-preparatory English that include frequent and regular writing, and reading of classic and modern literature.
  3. Mathematics – 3 YEARS REQUIRED, 4 YEARS RECOMMENDED
    Three (3) years of college-preparatory mathematics that include the topics covered in elementary and advanced algebra, and two- and three-dimensional geometry. Approved integrated math courses may be used to fulfill part or all of this requirement, as may math courses taken in 8th grade that a high school accepts as equivalent to its own math courses.
  4. Laboratory Science – 2 YEARS REQUIRED, 3 YEARS RECOMMENDED
    Two (2) years of laboratory science providing fundamental knowledge in two of these three foundational subjects: biology, chemistry, and physics. Advanced laboratory science classes that have biology, chemistry, or physics as prerequisites and offer substantial additional material may be used to fulfill this requirement.
  5. Language Other Than English – 2 YEARS REQUIRED, 3 YEARS RECOMMENDED
    Two (2) years of the same language other than English. Courses should emphasize speaking and understanding, and include instruction in grammar, vocabulary, reading, composition, and culture. Courses in languages other than English taken in the 7th and 8th grades may be used to fulfill part of this requirement if a high school accepts them as equivalent to its own courses.
  6. Visual and Performing Arts (VPA) – 1 YEAR REQUIRED
    A single year-long approved arts course from a single VPA discipline: dance, drama/theater, music, or visual art.
  7. College Preparatory Electives – 1 YEAR REQUIRED
    One (1) year (two semesters), in addition to those required in “A-F” above, or courses that have been approved solely in the elective area.

Contact your child’s high school counselor to verify or confirm your child’s individual progress toward high school graduation and a-g.

Meeting minimum a-g requirements does not ensure University admission. Students who take more a-g courses earn additional a-g credits, which makes them more competitive in the admission process.

Career Counseling/Prohibited Sex Discrimination

E.C. 221.5; A.R. 6164.2

Parents/Guardians of pupils in the Fresno Unified School District are hereby notified that career counseling and course selection will take place in the District’s schools, and will include affirmative exploration career or career courses that are nontraditional for the pupil’s gender. This counseling will take place beginning at the 7th grade; parents/guardians are encouraged to take part in the counseling sessions and decisions.

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Physical Education (PE) Requirements

Education Code 51222 requires that all students in grades 7-12 must receive no less than 400 minutes each 10 school days of physical education activities. Education Code 51210 mandates students in grades 1-6 to participate in at least 200 minutes of physical education activity every 10 school days. In Fresno Unified School District. Students must complete 20 physical education graduation credits. Furthermore, 5th, 7th, and 9th grade students shall participate in State Physical Fitness Testing during the spring semester.

Education Code 51241 and Fresno Unified School District Board Policy 6142.7 allows the Superintendent or designee to grant exemptions from the minimum number of required physical education minutes to students who meet specific conditions. Students enrolled in Marching Band, JROTC I or II or Aerospace Science I or II with a non-PE credentialed teacher, will be allowed to count less than half of the PE class minutes toward the requirement of no less than 400 minutes of each 10 school days of physical education activities. The students assigned to these courses will be expected to complete an activity log (which demonstrates physical activities completed outside of the class period) as a requirement of the course to fulfill the required minutes of physical education (no less than 400 minutes each 10 school days).

For more information, please contact the Physical Education Department at 559-457-3496 or contact your child’s guidance counselor.

Comprehensive Sexual Health Education

B.P. 6142.1, E.C. 51930

In order to satisfy the requirement set forth by the California Healthy Youth Act (EC 51930), our Fresno Unified School District Board of Education adopted the curriculum, Positive Prevention PLUS, for middle and high school levels, which will be taught once in the 7th grade and in 9th/10th grade biological sciences in high school. The California Healthy Youth Act requires the District:

  • To provide pupils with the knowledge and skills necessary to protect their sexual and reproductive health from HIV and other sexually transmitted infections and from unintended pregnancy.
  • To provide pupils with the knowledge and skills they need to develop healthy attitudes concerning adolescent growth and development, body image, gender, sexual orientation, relationships, marriage, and family.
  • To promote understanding of sexuality as a normal part of human development.
  • To ensure pupils receive integrated, comprehensive, accurate, and unbiased sexual health and HIV prevention instruction and provide educators with clear tools and guidance to accomplish that end.

All materials are available for parent inspection at each site. Parents or guardians have the right to excuse their child from comprehensive sexual health education and HIV prevention education. The request must be made in writing to the school (EC 51934). For a copy of the California Healthy Youth Act, please contact your child’s school.

Fees And Charges

BP 3260

The Governing Board recognizes its responsibility to ensure that books, materials, instructional equipment, supplies, and other resources necessary for students’ participation in the educational program are made available to them. No student shall be required to pay any fees, deposits, or other charges for his/her participation in an educational activity which constitutes an integral fundamental part of the district’s educational program, including curricular and extracurricular activities.

As necessary, the Board may approve fees, deposits, and other charges, which are specifically authorized by law.

For such authorized fees, deposits and charges, the district shall consider students’ and parents/guardians’ ability to pay when establishing fee schedules and granting waivers or exceptions.

Whenever a student or parent/guardian believes that an impermissible fee, deposit, or other charge is being required of the student for his/her participation in an educational activity, the student or his/her parent/guardian may file a complaint with the principal or designee using the district’s procedures in BP/AR 1312.3 – Uniform Complaint Procedures. (Education Code 49013)

Advanced Placement Fee Payment (Fee Reduction) Program

The purpose of this program is to remove the financial barrier to taking Advanced Placement (AP) exams. With the availability of both State and Federal funds, eligible Fresno Unified students can receive fee reductions for each AP exam taken. A student who meets either of the following criteria is eligible to receive financial assistance to take AP exams:

  1. Comes from a household with taxable income for the preceding year not exceeding 185% of the poverty level issued annually by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services or
  2. They qualify as an “identified student” because they are in foster care or Head Start, or homeless or migrant, or living in households that receive SNAP/Food Stamps, TANF cash assistance, or the Food Distribution on Indian Reservation benefits

For more information, see the AP liaison/counselor at your high school.

International Baccalaureate Fee Payment (Fee Reduction) Program

The purpose of this program is to remove the financial barrier to taking International Baccalaureate (IB) exams. With the availability of both State and Federal funds, eligible Fresno Unified students can receive fee reductions for each IB exam taken. A student who meets either of the following criteria is eligible to receive financial assistance to take IB exams:

  1. Comes from a household with taxable income for the preceding year not to exceed 185% of the poverty level issued annually by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services or
  2. They qualify as an “identified student” because they are in foster care or Head Start, or homeless or migrant, or living in households that receive SNAP/Food Stamps, TANF cash assistance, or the Food Distribution on Indian Reservation benefits

The IB Coordinator at Fresno High School can be reached at 457-2793 for more information on the program and for copies of the Student Eligibility Forms.

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State Testing

California High School Proficiency Exam (CHSPE)

C.C.R., Title 5, Sec. 11523; E.C. 48412

The California High School Proficiency Examination (CHSPE) is a program established by California law. E.C. 48412. If eligible to take the test, you can earn the legal equivalent of a high school diploma by passing the CHSPE. The CHSPE consists of two (2) sections: an English-language Arts section and a Mathematics section. If you pass both sections, the California State Board of Education will award you a Certificate of Proficiency, which by state law is equivalent to a high school diploma.

You may take CHSPE if, on testing day, you:

  • Are at least 16 years old;
  • Have enrolled in the 10th grade for one (1) academic year or longer; or
  • Will complete one (1) academic year of enrollment in the 10th grade at the end of the semester during which the next regular administration will be conducted.

CHSPE Testing Dates

Please visit the website for testing dates.
2018-2019 test dates are posted on the CHSPE website at:
http://www.chspe.net
Results are mailed approx. 5 weeks after test completion.

There is no limit to the number of times you may take the test. Please contact your home high school for an announcement explaining the CHSPE and registration requirements.

In addition, for registration information and instructions for taking the test, contact:

CHSPE Office - Sacramento County Office of Education
P.O. Box 269003
Sacramento, CA 95826-9003
Telephone: (866) 342-4773 (toll free) or visit the web site:
http://www.chspe.net

California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP)

CAASPP Testing Dates

Grades 3-8, 11: April 1 to June 1, 2019

CAASPP Program

C.C.R., Title 5, Sec. 850-870; E.C. 60600-60652; B.P. 6162.51; A.R. 6162.51

This year students will participate in the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) system by taking a series of computer-based tests developed by the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium that will provide an academic checkup for students by measuring real-world skills like critical thinking and problem solving. These assessments offer significant improvements over tests of the past, including new types of questions and performance tasks that require students to apply a variety of skills to complete complex tasks that will prepare them for college and the workplace. Students in grades 3 – 8 and 11 will be assessed in English Language Arts/Literacy and mathematics.

Recently-Arrived English Learners

English Learners (EL) who have: (1) been enrolled in United States schools for less than 12 months are not required to take the English Language Arts/Literacy assessment but will take the mathematics assessment.

Students With Exceptional Needs

5 C.C.R. 853, 853.5

Individualized Education Plans (IEP)
Students in Special Education programs with Individualized Education Plans (IEP) are allowed accommodations such as, Braille, extended time, or the use of a reader, scribe, or calculator. The IEP must state the specific accommodation. Also, students with current plans under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 specifying such accommodations will be tested with the prescribed accommodations. No other students are allowed testing accommodations.

Students with significant cognitive disabilities take the California Alternate Assessment (CAA).

California Alternate Assessment

As part of the CAASPP Program, the California Alternate Assessment (CAA) provides students with significant cognitive disabilities the opportunity to demonstrate achievement in English Language Arts/Literacy and mathematics by taking a test commensurate with their abilities. This test is designed for students in grades 3-8 and 11, who have an individualized education program and who have a significant cognitive disability. CAA is administered online only and one-on-one by a test examiner. A certificated or licensed test examiner who is familiar with the student will administer the test. The CAA for Science Test will be administered to eligible students in grades 5 and 8, and one time in high school.

California Science Test

The California Science Test (CAST) is an online test based on the California Next Generation Science Standards. Students in grades 5 and 8, and one time high school will participate. The CAST uses the current CAASPP test delivery system and is administered online.

CAASPP - Parent Right to Exempt

C.C.R., Title 5, Sec. 852; E.C. 33051, 60605 (g) & (h), 60615, 60640, 60651

A parent/guardian may submit to the school a written and signed request to excuse his/her child from any or all parts of the CAASPP tests. The District and its employees may discuss the CAASPP program with parents/guardians and may inform them of the availability of exemptions under E.C. 60615. However, the District and its employees shall not solicit or encourage any written exemption request on behalf of any student or group of students.

English Language Proficiency Assessments for California (ELPAC)

Test dates: February 1 to May 31, 2019

C.C.R., Title 1, Sec. 313; E.C. 60810

The ELPAC summative assessment is administered to assess the progress of English Learners in acquiring the skills of listening, speaking, reading, and writing in English. Identifying students who need help learning in English is important so these students can get the extra help they need to do well in school and access the full curriculum. Every year students who are English learners will take the ELPAC summative to measure their progress in learning English. Students whose primary language is other than English will take the Initial Assessment. The Initial Assessment is used to identify students as either an English learner who needs support to learn English, or as proficient in English.

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Fresno Unified School District  •   2309 Tulare St., Fresno, CA 93721   •   (559) 457-3000

Fresno Unified School District

Non-Discrimination Policy: Fresno Unified School District does not harass, intimidate, or discriminate on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, national origin, immigration status, ancestry, age, creed, religion, political affiliation, gender, gender identity or expression or genetic information, mental or physical disability, sex, sexual orientation, marital, pregnancy or parental status, military veteran status, or any other basis protected by law or regulation, in its educational program(s) or employment. Compliance Officers | Full Policy

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