Our curriculum emphasizes the visual and performing arts and prepares students to think critically, communicate effectively, analyze issues, and develop leadership abilities. We approach this in four ways:
- Rigorous academic courses premised on high expectations and sequenced to prepare students for college success.
- Enrollment in arts classes for all students to support and encourage self-expression, creativity and awareness. CARE (Core Arts Requirement Emphasis) applies to all FALA students and requires a minimum of one course within each artistic discipline–theater, dance, art and music.
- Civic participation through our service learning program, which connects course curricula with local and global social issues through service experiences in the community. Our emphasis is on organizations that work for social change.
- The development of leadership skills through our weekly advisory program, which encourages students to mentor, reflect on their experiences, set short- and long-term goals, and create personal portfolios that track academic and artistic growth.
Our Service Learning program encourages students to become active members in local, national and global communities through service experiences related to classroom curriculum. Contact Service Learning Coordinator Janeece Henes for information. You can also download a service learning log sheet to help you record and keep track of your service learning hours. Options for service learning projects include:
- Volunteering at non-profit and community organizations.
- Assisting with the varied needs of community members.
- Participating in faculty-initiated projects.
- Helping FALA as a teaching aide or office aide.
- Working with community partner organizations to create and participate in projects aimed for community improvement.
Middle school students are strongly encouraged to participate in service learning projects through their courses at FALA. (Hours logged in middle school will not count toward the high school requirements.) High school students must participate in five service-learning hours per year connected with FALA courses and complete an additional 25 hours per year either through additional FALA service learning activities or community service, volunteer work or individual service learning opportunities.
All high school students must complete 120 hours of service learning to graduate, pro-rated per year of attendance. Any student who does not complete the service learning requirements by the date of graduation will be allowed to participate in the ceremony but will not receive a diploma until verification of completion of hours is submitted.
Middle School Academic Requirements
Middle school students must be enrolled in 4 courses each day (for a total of 8 courses each semester). Students must earn at least a C in each required academic class (math, English, science, social studies and liberal studies) to advance to the next level. Students must earn at least a D in at least 2 electives each year. Middle school students must earn at least a B for their electives and have the recommendation of their teacher to take advanced elective courses once they reach high school.
High School Academic Requirements
Students must be enrolled in a minimum of 3 courses each day (for a total of 6 courses each semester). Study Hall, Office Aide and Teacher Aide positions are not included in these totals. Earning a D grade is passing for all high school classes.
Advanced Placement (AP) & Honors Courses
All students enrolled in AP courses are required to take the AP exam in May and pay the required testing fees. Fee reductions are available based on family income. Arrangements must be made two months before the tests with the assigned school counselor. Students must remain in honors and AP classes for the entire year to receive the additional GPA calculation. Exceptions will be made on a case-by-case basis for transfer students.
Honor Roll, High Honor Roll & Valedictorian
Students with a GPA of 3.5-3.74 (by semester) will be placed on Honor Roll. Students with a GPA of 3.75 and above (by semester) will be placed on High Honor Roll. The senior valedictorian will be chosen based on a cumulative, unweighted GPA as of May 1. In the case of a tie, the faculty votes to choose the valedictorian.
Graduation with Honors
The honors program is for students who are truly invested in their educational endeavors at FALA. Honors students challenge themselves by pursuing Advanced Placement and other advanced academic courses while also taking the most advanced courses in at least one artistic discipline. Students graduating with honors will be recognized at the Honors Ceremony in spring semester and earn a special cord for graduation.
Specific requirements: 1) Students must earn a cumulative unweighted GPA of 3.5 or higher (measured on May 1 of the senior year). 2) Students must take (or be enrolled in) at least 4 Advanced Placement courses. 3) Students must take at least 3 years of the same foreign language. 4) Students must earn 4 credits in math, science, social studies and English. 5) Students must take at least two of the most advanced courses in at least one artistic discipline while still fulfilling the CARE requirement. Students must earn 28 credits to graduate with Honors.