Transitioning to
Middle School and High
Division of Student Services
Miami-Dade County Public Schools
Deborah A. Montilla, Administrative Director
Kelly S. Apolinar, Curriculum Support Specialist
From Elementary to Middle School:
Changes to expect
 More
 New challenges
 New peer group and friends
 New program of Study (includes teams,
block schedules, mid-term/final exams)
From Middle School to High School
Changes to expect
 More freedoms
 New challenges
 New peer group and friends
 New program of Study (includes academies,
advanced coursework, post-secondary plan)
Things to do to Prepare for
 Develop
decision-making skills
 Learn as much as possible about the new
 Visit before the first day, and/or participate
in orientation
 Organize notebooks, planners, etc. –get help
as needed
Preparing . . . Continued
 Identify
support within the school
 Blend, look around, fit in
 Trial and error works, but know you may
ask for help
Making choices …
 Elective
 Extra-curricular activities (clubs, sports,
community service, work)
 Peer groups
 High school courses taken in middle school
Required Middle School Program of
years Language Arts or ESOL
 3 years Mathematics
 3 years Social Sciences
 3 years Science
 ½ year of Physical education at each grade
Electives: computer education, vocational
education, art, music, reading, etc.
Total: 18 annual courses required
Required Units of Study
for Middle Grades*
Human Growth and Development
Substance Abuse Education
Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Economic Education
Florida History, Government , and Geography
African American History
Character Education
Hispanic contributions to the United States
Women’s contributions to the United States
History of the Holocaust
Multicultural Education
Computer Literacy, critical thinking, and other related skills
And others
*required by Florida Statutes, Florida Board of Education, or the School Board
Senior High School Credits
for Students in Grades 6, 7,and 8
Algebra I, II Honors
Geometry Honors
Earth/Space Science H.
Biology Honors
Foreign Languages
Note: The national Collegiate Athletic Association does not
recognize senior high courses taken in a grade below 9th to
meet eligibility requirements to participate in college
Required High School Program of
4 years Language Arts or ESOL*
4 years Mathematics*
3 years Social Sciences*
3 years Science*
1 credit of Performing Fine Arts
½ credit Physical Education
½ credit Personal Fitness
Electives *
Total: 24 credits required or 18 credit option
*There are specific course requirements to meet for all graduation options and scholarship eligibility
Things to consider throughout
middle grades and high school
 Educational
and/or career goals
 Senior high school options (career academies,
magnet schools/programs, vocational
centers, charter schools, and more)
 Developing interests and/or talents
 High school graduation options
3 High School Graduation
 Traditional
four year 24-credit program
 Three
year 18-credit college prep
 Three
year 18-credit career prep
Things to consider in choosing a
graduation option
What are my educational and/or career goals?
Will I be ready for a job or to enter college after high
Will I meet admissions requirements for a college
or career outside of Florida?
Will I meet eligibility for a scholarship? (test scores,
GPA, community service)
Will I meet NCAA eligibility requirements? How
about athletic/talent eligibility?
Selecting an 18- credit Graduation
Eligibility Requirements
8th grade FCAT scores must be level 3 in Reading, Math and
Selection MUST be made by the end of ninth grade
Parent and Student must sign contract
Must be completed in three years, must also remain in high
school three years even if they have met the required 18 credits
by tenth grade.
Must earn 5 credits by the end of ninth grade
or 11 credits by the end of tenth grade to remain in the
Maintaining the required GPA and passing the Grade 10
FCAT is critical!
Who Can Help with Questions and
Concerns in Middle/High School?
School Counselor
School Social Workers
TRUST Specialist
Community Involvement Specialists
College Assistance Program Advisor
Tools to Monitor Progress
 Student/Parent
 Report
 Progress Report
 Career Portfolio/ePEP/Bright Futures
 Student History By Subject Area
 Standardized Test Score Reports
 Schools now also have student dashboards
with individualized test score analysis.
Information can
be found along
the top
Report is broken
down by subject
area with
indicators for
credits earned
/required and
still in need
“T” indicates that
a course was
entered in
TRACE- earned
other than
school program
An “X” next to an “F”
indicates that the
course has been
forgiven and is not
longer counted in the
Notice the special
diploma core classes
that fall under the
electives category.
These courses do not
transfer to standard
diploma courses.
Tools for Success
 Student
 Subject Area Notebooks
 Daily Schedule
 Graduation Checklist
 Research (Media Center, Internet, local
 Review Classwork/notes Daily
Other Things to Consider…
The transition to middle or high school tends to
destabilize many students
Transition students typically look for answers on
how to develop a new identity
The new school environment is more mature and
Transition students need guidance in finding
opportunities, etc
There is an Increase in self-destructive behavior and
loss of self-esteem
Where Can I Find
Additional Information ?

Transitioning to Senior High School