Pre-AP courses are on-grade level academically advanced courses designed to challenge motivated students to understand rigorous content. The coursework requires students to engage in independent and analytical assignments and to complete a substantial amount of work outside of class. McKinney ISD offers Pre-AP courses in English, math, science, and social studies. Pre-AP middle school courses are designed to prepare students for high school Pre-AP and Advanced Placement (AP) courses. AP courses are college-level courses taught in a high school setting. At the end of each AP course an AP Exam is given. Qualifying scores on the AP exams can enable students to receive college credit and/or advanced standing at a university or college.
Sixth grade students are at an age level where their thinking is still primarily concrete rather than at the abstract, analytical level needed for advanced courses. Inappropriate placement of many sixth grade students in Pre-AP classes has led to their remaining in the Pre-AP program throughout middle school where they were less successful in mastering critical foundational skills because of the depth or pace of the classes. These students often were unsuccessful in high school Pre-AP classes.
The decision to continue to offer a 6th grade Pre-AP math course came about because of necessity, not because it is easier to identify students. The content of each Pre-AP math course is actually different than the content in the on-grade-level math course. In other words, in order to accelerate through the curriculum to take an AP math course in high school, Pre-AP math students must learn more content in middle school. English, science, and social studies courses do not require accelerated (or different) curriculum. Acceleration of content in middle school Pre-AP courses also allows for better correlation of high school science courses with their required math courses.
Surrounding districts have similar plans as MISD as listed below.
6th grade: Math only, 7th and 8th grades: English, Math, Science and Social Studies
Heterogeneously grouped 6th grade classrooms will allow teachers to develop and implement a rigorous differentiated curriculum for all students. Classroom instruction will concentrate on developing essential foundational skills and concepts.
McKinney ISD offers open enrollment for Pre-AP courses. Students who experience success in Pre-AP courses typically exhibit the following personal and academic characteristics.
Additional information on the middle school Pre-AP program is available from the middle school counselors and administrators.