What is a “Reach Ahead” Credit?
The Ontario Schools (2016) states in section 188.8.131.52 that:
“Under exceptional circumstances, an individual student in Grade 8, with parental consent, may be given permission by the principal of a secondary school to “reach ahead” to take secondary school courses, either during the school year or in the summer prior to entering Grade 9.”
Who Might Benefit from Reaching Ahead?
Every Spring and Summer, BrightMinds Online School accepts grade 8 students who wish to reach ahead.
- Students who have continuously demonstrated exceptional academic performance during their middle school years or those who have been identified as a gifted or enriched learner in their Individual Education Plan (IEP) might benefit from reaching ahead. Such students might want to accelerate their secondary studies and graduate from high school at an earlier age.
- Students who are professionally pursuing a career in sports, music or arts parallel to their high school studies. Reaching ahead over summer can give these students more time during the main academic year to focus on their professional extracurricular activities.
- Students with different learning abilities might benefit from completing an easier Grade 9 credit course such as Geography as a reach ahead credit. This allows them to have more time to focus on the remaining Grade 9 courses such as mathematics, English, and science during the main academic year. With more time, students and parents can squeeze in more review, practice or tutoring time to support the student’s learning and success.
The transition from Grade 8 to 9 can be challenging for students and parents. Reaching ahead could help alleviate some of the stress and anxiety associated with the process but as mentioned earlier, reaching ahead is not for everyone. Some students benefit from taking the summer between their Grade 8 and 9 off to recharge and reset and prepare for their first year as a high school student.
BrightMinds Online School welcomes your queries about Reach Ahead for your education needs. By being an online secondary school, it is possible to still spend your summer at a cottage or on holidays and still set aside time to earn one high school credit.