University City High School Mr.

Irwin - School Year 2009 – 2010 858-457-3040 Ext 102 GOVERNMENT TEXT: United States Government (Glencoe, 2003). COURSE DESCRIPTION: This one semester course gives a broad overview of modern forms of government, present in today’s global community. It provides the student an opportunity to acquire detailed knowledge of the philosophy behind the democratic form of government practiced in the United States. In this course, the United States Constitution is studied in detail. The overall objective of this course is to prepare Seniors for their place in society, by helping them learn how our government works, how it can be changed and what rights and freedoms our Constitution guarantees us. COURSE METHODS: • Reading from textbook, newspapers and other material • Lectures and note taking • Class discussions relating to assigned readings • Films and slide shows • Homework including assigned readings and written responses • Term projects • Current events • Small group activities GRADING POLICY AND SCHOLARSHIP: A weighted points system will be used to determine student grades as detailed below: 1. Tests will comprise 50% of a student’s grade. 2. Quizzes will comprise 20% of a student’s grade. 3. Written class work, homework and notes in student’s notebook will comprise 15% of the grade. 4. Term projects will comprise 15% of the student’s grade. CLASSROOM RULES AND POLICIES: 1. The student is to be on time, in assigned seat and beginning work by the time the bell rings. 2. The student will come to class prepared to work by bringing all needed materials such as notebook, paper, pencil, pen, textbook and any other material that may be required. 3. Respect the authority of the teacher and the rights of all students to learn. 4. Obtain teacher recognition before speaking; do not talk when the teacher or an acknowledged student is speaking.


5. Electronic devices such as cell phones, pagers, iPods, other MP3 Players, CD Players or similar items are to be kept turned off and stored out of sight, in purse or backpack. 6. Obey and follow all school rules, respect others and their material and property. TARDIES AND TRUANCIES: 1. ONE (1) tardy results in a student/teacher talk and loss of citizenship points. 2. TWO (2) tardies will result in a communication to parent or guardian and loss of citizenship points. 3. THREE (3) tardies will result in detention and loss of citizenship points. 4. FOUR (4) tardies will result in a referral and loss of citizenship points. 5. TRUANCY – truancy policy SB813 will be enforced. A first offense truant will be assigned campus clean-up duties, and citizenship points will be deducted. A repeat truant will receive a referral, parent will be notified and citizenship points will be deducted. HOMEWORK: Weekly class work and/or homework assignments will be given. Students are expected to complete all assignments, and to manage their time in such a way as to meet all due dates. No late work will be accepted!!! IRWIN WEBSITE & CLASS ASSIGNMENTS : I maintain a website for my Government classes. The Internet address is: This is where I post all class assignments, objectives and due dates. Students will visit this site regularly. Parents are encouraged to visit the class website at any time, in order to stay informed about tests, quizzes, homework assignments, projects and their respective due dates. This class website will be used as a portal to online quizzes that will comprise 20% of the student’s grade. Also from the class website, students and parents can email me, simply by clicking on the icon that says “Send Email to Mr. Irwin.” MAKE-UP WORK: Since it is expected that the student will be in class every day, except for legitimate reasons such as a serious illness, there should be very few instances in which a student needs to make up work. So that students can always stay informed about their assignments and due dates, all assignments will be posted on the class website. As the result, students will be expected to turn in legitimately missed work on the day of their return or at the latest, within 24 hours. Legitimately missed tests must be made up by appointment after school, within the next five class days. The teacher reserves the right to use alternative tests for make-up purposes. Failure to make up missed assignments, including tests, in the manner described, will result in a grade of “zero” for the missed assignment or test.


LEARNING EXPECTATION: The state of California has adopted educational standards that describe the knowledge and skill sets that the student is expected to acquire as the result of this course of study. I will plan lessons that address these standards and will deliver a curriculum that meets the California Standards. In order to acquire the proper knowledge and skill sets mentioned, the student must make the effort to learn, by accepting responsibility for all work assigned. CHEATING: UCHS has an academic honesty policy that will be followed. Student behavior involving any form of cheating and/or plagiarism will not be tolerated. This includes cheating on tests or quizzes, using “canned” essays, copying another student’s homework, and/or any other form of dishonesty. Evidence of violation of the UCHS honesty policy will result in a grade of zero for the assignment, no make up opportunity, a call home to parents and the lowering of the student’s citizenship grade to “U”. Repeat offenders will be subject to more severe consequences that can include reporting the offense on the student’s high school transcript and/or receiving an “F” in Economics for the semester. PARENT COOPERATION & INVOLVEMENT: In order to maximize the learning process, I encourage parents to talk to their children regularly about school, homework, tests and projects, and to provide a home environment that supports learning. I plan to call parents from time to time, to let them know how their child is doing in class. Parents should feel free to contact me by email or by phone, with any question about how their student is doing.



PLEASE COMPLETE THIS PAGE AND RETURN IT TO MR. IRWIN I have read the course syllabus, and I understand the course description, the teaching methods that will be employed and how the grades will be calculated. I understand that the student is responsible for all class work and homework, and that the student is expected to follow all school and class rules. I understand the consequences for violating school or class rules, including tardiness, truancy, as well as poor citizenship in class.

____________________________ Student Printed Name

___________________________________ Student Signature Date:

____________________________ Parent Printed Name Date:

___________________________________ Parent Signature

_______________________________ Parent Daytime Telephone Number

___________________________________ Parent Evening Telephone Number

__________________________________________ Parent Email Address


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