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Old 01-26-2012, 03:54 PM
 
350 posts, read 618,793 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big G View Post
Thanks for jumping in. It's good to get some on-the-ground intel. Any thoughts on the Karen Dillard/SAT/ACT questions from your perspective?



Well, he could take AP Comp Sci and/or AP Stats, although the latter would be a snoozefest after AP Calc BC. He could also pick up an additional AP science class instead of taking math one or both years.



Yep, I assume the OP's kid is 100% honors if he's in PACE. Human Geography is only AP - the honors/regular course is called something else.



At the 9/10 level, I believe there is exactly ONE elective course that carries any additional GPA weight - AP European History. If the OP wants to 100% engage in GPA maximization, he should take that over Medical Science. Then again, I find it hard to believe that someone extremely interested in Medical Science would have the same level of passion for AP Euro History. At some point, you have to take what you're interested in, not what gaming the system leads you to.



You're right - I stand corrected. The exam grade goes on your transcript as the class grade, but is not used for class rank.



Exactly - you can take calc, but not at your own campus. You have to hassle with getting from Jasper/Shepton to PWSH (unless PISD provides a bus - do they?), then you have to ride home on the PWSH buses, and you miss out on after-school activities at the 9/10 campus. My kid has stuff going on 2-3x/week after school for this class and that club.., so that kind of noise wouldn't work for him at all.
The worth of KD is hard to determine; as we all do it, there isn't much to compare it to. If you're confident that you will be merit semifinalist though, then I think self studying would be fine. From my perspective, I went there primarily to make sure I would become a semifinalist (and unless the cut off drastically rises, as I'm a junior right now, it worked).

I loved AP Euro when I took it, so I would definitely recommend it . However, unless I am mistaken, it is only offered to sophomores, unless you can irritate your counselor enough to let you in as a freshman.

For calc, I think the district provides transportation, as there are already buses taking kids to the senior highs for 7th period athletics. Being in clubs could be a difficulty though, unless you persuade the group to have morning meetings.
Hope that helps!

Last edited by PISDstudent; 01-26-2012 at 04:02 PM.. Reason: typos :(
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Old 01-26-2012, 06:18 PM
 
11 posts, read 29,258 times
Reputation: 16
Thanks to all of you for taking the time in sharing valuable information. My son will be going to Jasper high school and then will be going to Plano West. He was very keen on taking Clinical Rotations. After he read all your replies, he feels he has more options and is figuring out different ways of achieving his goals. Please do let me know if you think going to TAMS Summer Math Program is a good idea? I would also appreciate your help regarding volunteering activities for him. How can he get involved in a community project? As a human being I want him to learn how to give back to the community. In fact we have fostered a few labs for the kids to know the value of giving back to the community. Is there other ways that he can get involved.

Thanks again for taking the time to answer my questions. Appreciate all your help!
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Old 01-26-2012, 07:05 PM
 
146 posts, read 242,032 times
Reputation: 83
Does he really want to do clinical rotations? That class is a big gpa killer.

Plano Therapeutic Recreation is a community service things that I like. There should be more parents like you who encourage their kids to get involved in the community!
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Old 01-26-2012, 08:16 PM
 
7,292 posts, read 8,128,081 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dodi1 View Post
Thanks to all of you for taking the time in sharing valuable information. My son will be going to Jasper high school and then will be going to Plano West. He was very keen on taking Clinical Rotations. After he read all your replies, he feels he has more options and is figuring out different ways of achieving his goals. Please do let me know if you think going to TAMS Summer Math Program is a good idea? I would also appreciate your help regarding volunteering activities for him. How can he get involved in a community project? As a human being I want him to learn how to give back to the community. In fact we have fostered a few labs for the kids to know the value of giving back to the community. Is there other ways that he can get involved.

Thanks again for taking the time to answer my questions. Appreciate all your help!


Preparing for a hospital volunteer opportunity the summer after he turns 16:
1. He'll need a resume
2. He'll need some community service
3. He'll need great grades, sounds like he has this well under control.
4. He'll need references

So far as community service:
1. Ask someone in the office at your son's school
2. Ask at your church if applicable
3. My daughter reads to and otherwise has fun with a group of children with Down Syndrome. This was arranged through her school.
4. Food banks, soup kitchens, women's and children's shelters all need volunteers.
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Old 01-26-2012, 08:33 PM
 
7,292 posts, read 8,128,081 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by facebookdigg123 View Post
Does he really want to do clinical rotations? That class is a big gpa killer.

Plano Therapeutic Recreation is a community service things that I like. There should be more parents like you who encourage their kids to get involved in the community!

Seeing my son go through the rigors of the road to becoming a doc. I can say the following with some confidence.

College level pre-med GPA killers are things like physics III and physics IV, evolutionary bio and O-Chem. I and II. All I'm saying is if a kid rally wants to become a doc. he can't shy away from difficult classes. He needs to "own" them. My son tells me all the time that "really going for it" in high school has made his college experience significantly easier than otherwise.
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Old 01-26-2012, 09:01 PM
 
146 posts, read 242,032 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EDS_ View Post
Seeing my son go through the rigors of the road to becoming a doc. I can say the following with some confidence.

College level pre-med GPA killers are things like physics III and physics IV, evolutionary bio and O-Chem. I and II. All I'm saying is if a kid rally wants to become a doc. he can't shy away from difficult classes. He needs to "own" them. My son tells me all the time that "really going for it" in high school has made his college experience significantly easier than otherwise.
I meant gpa killer as in its a regulars class and pulls your gpa down even if you get an A+, not that it's a hard class. I would rather have the kid take 2 additional AP classes than clinical rotation.

p.s. I'm going to med school next year, so I agree that you can't shy away from difficult classes. I took 7 AP classes my senior year of high school, and that's pretty comparable to college. College might even be a little bit easier.
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Old 01-26-2012, 09:32 PM
 
7,292 posts, read 8,128,081 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by facebookdigg123 View Post
I meant gpa killer as in its a regulars class and pulls your gpa down even if you get an A+, not that it's a hard class. I would rather have the kid take 2 additional AP classes than clinical rotation.

p.s. I'm going to med school next year, so I agree that you can't shy away from difficult classes. I took 7 AP classes my senior year of high school, and that's pretty comparable to college. College might even be a little bit easier.
Ahhh my bad...I assumed it was an honors class.

Much like you my son took most every difficult class his high school offered and the adjustment to college was smooth.

Congratulations on med school that's an awesome accomplishment. Will you be attending med school in Texas?
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Old 01-26-2012, 10:10 PM
 
146 posts, read 242,032 times
Reputation: 83
Quote:
Originally Posted by EDS_ View Post
Ahhh my bad...I assumed it was an honors class.

Much like you my son took most every difficult class his high school offered and the adjustment to college was smooth.

Congratulations on med school that's an awesome accomplishment. Will you be attending med school in Texas?
It was a regulars class back in the day. Not sure if it still is.

Thanks! I'm not sure yet. I got a scholarship to an out of state school. I havent really looked at the finances close enough, but it will probably be cheaper for me to attend that school. Still waiting to hear back about scholarships at other out of state schools as well, but I would be happy attending any of the schools I've gotten into.
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Old 01-26-2012, 10:18 PM
 
7,292 posts, read 8,128,081 times
Reputation: 5381
Quote:
Originally Posted by facebookdigg123 View Post
It was a regulars class back in the day. Not sure if it still is.

Thanks! I'm not sure yet. I got a scholarship to an out of state school. I havent really looked at the finances close enough, but it will probably be cheaper for me to attend that school. Still waiting to hear back about scholarships at other out of state schools as well, but I would be happy attending any of the schools I've gotten into.
Again congratulations.
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Old 01-26-2012, 11:00 PM
 
Location: Dallas, TX
2,346 posts, read 5,795,682 times
Reputation: 2284
AFAIK, clinical rotations is still a regulars class, and it is, indeed, a GPA killer, for exactly the reason you describe. You can kiss any chance at val/sal goodbye, and top 10% gets put into danger. Of course, taking any additional non-required regulars class (even orchestra) will do that to you.

As I said before, though, you have to be able to let that go, in order to study what you want. There's always going to be some GPA "lady of the evening" who is completely gaming the system, taking non-classes like classroom aide as his/her electives to optimize the GPA.

In the big picture, getting a slightly lower high school GPA (due entirely to PISD's arbitrary weighting system, not your performance) doesn't mean squat once the OP's kid goes off to college. It isn't going to affect his chances of getting into med school - that will depend entirely on his college performance.
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