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Advanced Academic Programs

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Advanced Academic Programs developed by Virginia Beach City Public Schools represent an exciting expansion of curricular options for all students across the city. Recognizing that no educational program should adopt a “one size fits all” philosophy, the division developed the advanced academic programs to provide additional academic choices for our students.

The Virginia Beach Schools advanced academic programs are designed to appeal to students with a deep commitment to academic rigor. Currently, the division has two high school and one middle school advanced academic programs in operation. They are the International Baccalaureate Program at Princess Anne High School, Mathematics & Science Academy at Ocean Lakes High School, and Middle Years International Baccalaureate Program at Plaza Middle School.

Program Description

In response to meeting the diverse interests and needs of high school students, Virginia Beach City Public Schools developed a rigorous and unique program of study emphasizing the core areas of mathematics and science with an infusion of technology. The Mathematics & Science Academy offers courses that are unavailable to other high school students and designed to nurture their inquisitive minds and challenge their academic horizons.

In response to meeting the diverse interests and needs of high school students, Virginia Beach City Public Schools developed a rigorous and unique program of study emphasizing the core areas of mathematics and science with an infusion of technology. The Mathematics & Science Academy offers courses that are unavailable to other high school students and designed to nurture their inquisitive minds and challenge their academic horizons.

Mission of the Mathematics & Science Academy

The Mission of the Mathematics & Science Academy is to provide a rigorous and innovative academic program focused upon mathematics and science which inspires and empowers students to pursue related careers and to make significant contributions to the global community.           

Vision of the Mathematics & Science Academy

Through the integration of 21st century skills, current technologies and authentic applications that inspire and engage students, the Mathematics & Science Academy exemplifies the best in mathematics and science education, realized in the innovative achievements, leadership and service of its graduates in associated professions throughout the global community.
 

Program Components

The Mathematics & Science Academy is an advanced academic program designed for academically motivated and dedicated students. With this in mind, scientists, professors, community members, and educators created a challenging experience mirroring comparable competitive mathematics and science academies in the nation. This is a four-year program that provides a strong but broad study of mathematics and science. The senior project, which takes the form of a mentorship or formal research, is the capstone of the program.
 

Accelerated Instruction List

  • Extensive laboratory experience using CBLs and other computer-based software and hardware
  • English curricula integrating a multitude of nonfiction materials and technical writing units
  • Emphasis on critical thinking skills in all academy courses
  • Intensive writing assignments designed to improve a student's skills and hone his/her ability to communicate effectively
  • Participation in various academic competitions
  • Exposure to a variety of technology applications including computers, software, scanners, digital cameras, and other peripheral devices
  • Career counseling by guidance counselors and the academy coordinator to facilitate a student's preparation and acceptance into colleges and universities and opportunities to earn scholarships.              

Senior Project

As a capstone experience of each academy student's program of study, the mentorship/research project truly sets our students apart. The focus of the project is in a field of math, science, or technology and integrates the foundational topics studied in the preceding years. Students elect to complete a field-based research project or mentorship with a practicing scientist, mathematician, or a like professional. Successful completion of this portion of the program includes 140 hours of independent work, a multimedia presentation of the experience, a written summation, and an oral presentation.
 

Program Requirements

  • Take at least one math and one science course each year,
  • Complete a minimum of 5 units of high school math; entering freshmen are required to have completed Algebra I prior to 9th grade,
  • Enroll in Honors or AP English courses in the Junior and Senior years of high school,
  • Complete a minimum of 4 units of high school science, including magnet chemistry, magnet molecular biology, magnet physics and a full credit of senior science electives,
  • Complete at least 3 years of one foreign language (students are encouraged to complete 4 years to be competitive applicants to selective colleges and universities); Completion of 1 year of a foreign language prior to 9th grade is recommended,
  • Complete 1 year of magnet technology courses,
  • Complete a senior research or mentorship project,
  • Meet Virginia Advanced Studies diploma requirements,
  • Take a minimum of 6 classes each semester. (The mentorship/research project is a graded, credit-bearing course, but it does not count as one of the required six classes.)
  • Maintain a Grade Point Average (GPA) of at least 3.0.                        

Unique Courses

    Mathematics:
  • Magnet Geometry
  • Magnet Advanced Algebra
  • Magnet Precalculus
  • *Magnet Data Analysis
  • *Magnet Mathematical Modeling
  • *Multivariable Calculus
  • *Differential Equations
  • *Magnet Computer Architecture
    Science:
  • Magnet Chemistry
  • *Magnet Analytical Chemistry
  • *Magnet Molecular Biology
  • *Magnet Physics
  • *Magnet Human Anatomy
  • *Magnet Human Physiology
  • *Magnet Meteorology
  • *Magnet Microbiology
  • *Magnet Organic Chemistry
  • *Magnet Astronomy
  • *Magnet Biochemistry
  • *AP Physics C
    Technology:
  • Magnet Integrative STEM
    *Weighted Courses