Grade 9 Transition

Class of 2023!!

Information is beginning to come in regarding the registration process for the 2019-2020 school year. Coming up first, information about all 3 academies at Albemarle County's high schools.

Dates to be aware of:

November 14th, 2018: All Academies visit SMS during CHOMP

November 26th, 2018: Academy applications available online

January 25th, 2019: All applications due

March 1st, 2019 @ 4:00 PM: Academy acceptance letters e-mailed.

Academy Open Houses: More information at the end of this page

  • ESA (Environmental Studies Academy @ Western Albemarle High School)
      • December 5th, 2018 5:30 - 7:00 PM
  • HMSA (Health and Medical Sciences Academy @ Monticello High School)
      • November 15th, 2018 5:00 - 6:30 PM
  • MESA (Math, Engineering, and Sciences Academy @ Albemarle High School)
      • November 7th, 2018 5:00 - 7:00 PM
      • December 6th, 2018 5:00 - 7:00 PM
  • Murray High School (same timeline as the 3 academies)
      • November 15th, 2018 6:00 - 7:00 PM
      • December 13th, 2018 6:00 - 7:00 PM
      • January 17th, 2019 6:00 - 7:00 PM

Applications for all 3 academies will be available @ 4:00 on November 26, 2018. Applications can be found on the website for any of the academies. Applications are due on January 25, 2019.

Information will be updated and posted here regarding the registration process for 2019/2020. Please check back regularly as new information will be added as it becomes available.

Important Dates:

High School Registration

The Recommendation Process:

Throughout the month of December, the 8th grade teachers will make recommendations for the 2019/2020 school year. Recommendations will be made in all major subjects, including Math, Science, History, English, and World Languages. SMS staff members will discuss these recommendations with students prior to students selecting courses. The School Counselors, Mr. Cabell Guy and Mrs. Lisa Wright, will offer a parent workshop on Thursday, December 13th to help parents of rising 9th grade students understand the registration process both at Sutherland and at Albemarle. They will also meet with all 8th grade students prior to Winter Break to explain selection of classes.

Parent Portal will open for students and parents to see their class recommendations and select classes over Winter Break. All students will select courses, as well as alternative electives, at this time.

Starting in late January, Mr. Guy and Mrs. Wright will meet with all 8th grade students and families to review the courses selected for AHS, create a four-year plan for graduation, and answer questions about high school.

Courses will be finalized in April. Students will not be able to make changes to their course requests for 9th grade after April 20, 2019. As of the end of the year, any questions regarding 9th grade courses should be directed to the AHS Counseling Office.

Selecting Classes:

Much like 7th to 8th grade registration, parents and students will use ParentPortal to select classes for the 2019/2020 school year. The difference now is the number of classes students can select. Ideally, students will take 8 classes their freshman year; however, some classes are double-blocked taking a spot for an elective.

A typical schedule at AHS looks like this:

Because students may have at most two electives, we ask that students select a few alternates on ParentPortal during the registration window. Many freshmen do not receive their first choice electives, so it is important to review the Program of Studies to select a few back-up choices.

Teacher Overrides:

Teachers work diligently to make sure students are placed in the correct class. However, parents may override a teacher recommendation and place a child in a higher level course or lower level course than the teacher recommended. To do this, parents and students must have a conversation with your School Counselor and sign a Teacher Override form. It is important to note that if a parent opts to override a teacher recommendation, students will be placed in the requested class. If the class becomes too difficult or too easy for the child, the probability of moving back to the recommended level could also mean a drop in other classes due to schedule re-alignment.

Parent/Student/Guidance Meetings:

Throughout the months of January, February, and March, parents and students will meet with your 8th grade counselor to discuss course recommendations, course selections, alternative electives, and make any course selection changes after the ParentPortal window closes. We will also review a four-year plan that will follow your child to the high school as a tentative road map to graduation at the end of 12th grade year. Parents are not required to attend these meetings, but are encouraged to come. During these meetings, all elementary records are returned to parents.

It is important to note we will register all rising 9th grade students as if they were a typical AHS 9th grade student. Meaning, if a student is applying to any of the specialty programs (listed below) we will not know about their acceptance until March. Thus, we register all students as if they did NOT make it into the program. If a student is selected for MESA or any other program, the high school will change the student's schedule appropriately upon acceptance.

9th Grade Electives: Subject to change (the electives listed below have been updated for the 2019-20 school year)

Application-Based Schools, Academies and classes:

Murray High School:

Murray High School is a Charter School for the state of Virginia, the first Glasser Quality Public High School, and a school of choice, serving 9th through 12th grade Albemarle County students. Any interested students may apply and will be considered for enrollment.

The Albemarle County Public Schools Math, Engineering & Science Academy (MESA) aims to educate a cross-section of students with a variety of interests and strengths, to infuse traditional school curricula with real world problem-solving, collaboration and inquiry-based learning, and to prepare the engineers, researchers, inventors and entrepreneurs of the 21st century.

Environmental Studies Academy (WAHS):

The Environmental Studies Academy is a four-year program designed to offer a cross curricular integrated environmental education for all learners. Curricular focus will include the following career concentrations.

  • Agricultural: Career pathway in agricultural sciences, horticulture, green materials, and sustainability. May include industry certifications.
  • Conservation: Career or educational pathway in resource management including fisheries, wildlife, forestry, land use, natural resources, ecology, and alternative energy.
  • Research: Educational pathway preparing students to pursue careers in environmental science, research, health, policy, law, physical, and earth sciences.

The Health and Medical Sciences Academy (MHS):

The Health and Medical Sciences Academy provides opportunities for students interested in Health Care Careers. Course curriculum is designed to prepare students for post-secondary education and the workforce. Students will engage in various learning experiences during their tenure in their academic course work.

AVID: Advancement Via Individual Determination, is a course taught at AHS dedicated to closing the achievement gap by preparing all students for college and other post-secondary opportunities. In the AVID class, students receive daily instruction and support to prepare them for college from a trained AVID elective teacher. AVID impacts students school wide as academic strategies like writing to learn, inquiry, collaboration, organizational skills, and critical reading are taught in all classes by teachers who have been trained to use AVID strategies in their specific content areas. The deadline for applications is January 26, 2018. We will provide a link as soon as the new application is available.

STEAM (Arts and Letters) Pathway: Albemarle High School has designed an academic pathway for our students: the Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math Pathway. These "Pathways" will permit students to choose among fifteen areas of concentration, and in addition to course study, students will participate in internships, community service, and a capstone project related to their chosen discipline. Students wanting to complete a Pathway must complete a Declaration of Intent form and may enter the Pathway in either 9th or 10th grade.

Denial of Credit Letters:

At the end of the current school year, any student who took a high school credit class will receive a Denial of Credit letter. These letters will list all high school credits received in middle school (Mechatronics, Spanish I, German I, French I, Algebra I, and/or Geometry) and the grades received for each class. Before entering high school, rising 9th graders can opt to deny the credit if the family was not satisfied with the grade. If a credit is denied, the grade will not show up on a high school transcript. Generally students who choose to deny a credit either repeat the course the following year or opt to take a different course in its place.