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Middle School Math Placement

Middle School Math

Common Core Middle School Math Courses 

Overview of Changes

Because Evergreen Public Schools has implemented the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics, it is critical that our middle school math courses are well aligned to these standards to prepare our students to be college and career ready. As a result, district and building administrators, math coaches, and math teachers collaboratively worked to develop a sequence of Common Core-aligned middle school math courses.

As shown below in green, Evergreen Public Schools has Common Core Grade Level Pacing and Compacted Pacing.

Our middle school math courses are based on recommendations in Appendix A of the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics.  The authors of the Common Core recommend that acceleration in math should be accomplished by compacting content rather than by skipping content.

Evergreen Public Schools offers the following middle school math courses:


What's different?

  • Most students will begin middle school in Math 6.
  • Some students who demonstrate a depth of understanding, with evidence of mastery of both current grade level standards and the ability to reason about standards beyond the current grade level, may be placed in Compacted Math 7/8. See below for more information about this option.

What's the same?

  • All students will have the opportunity to study linear functions in middle school. Much of the content central to typical Algebra 1 courses-namely linear equations, inequalities, and functions - is found in Math 8.
  • Students have the option to take additional challenge exams at the end of each school year through the district process.

Course Descriptions

Math 6, Math 7, and Math 8 are grade-level courses aligned with the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics.

  • The CCSS-M is more focused, coherent, and rigorous than our current state standards.
  • Math 6, Math 7, and Math 8 will build a strong math foundation for students in middle school.

Compacted 7/8 and Math 8/Algebra 1 are for students who need faster pacing.

  • Three years of math standards (Math 7, Math 8, and Algebra 1) are compacted into two years of instruction.
  • This is accomplished by dividing the 8th grade standards between the two courses.
  • Compacted 7/8 consists of all of Math 7 plus a portion of the 8th grade standards.
  • Math 8/Algebra 1 contains the remaining 8th grade standards plus the full content of Algebra 1.

Middle School Math – Parent Update

Is your student ready to challenge Common Core 6?

In the spring, all students in Math 6 will take an exam to determine placement into Common Core Grade Level Pacing vs. Compacted Pacing.

Is my child ready for Compacted 7/8?

Consider whether your child can demonstrate sufficient mastery of new 6th grade Common Core math skills and concepts to indicate readiness to begin middle school in Compacted 7/8.

This means that your child will both SKIP 6th grade math content and choose COMPACTED PACING through middle school.

Mastery of 6th Grade Common Core Content Standards:

  • Some students may be able to demonstrate sufficient mastery of Math 6 skills, concepts and reasoning to begin middle school in Compacted 7/8.  Students identified by the readiness criteria below will be given the Math 6 Challenge Exam.
  • CLICK HERE to see the CCSS 6th grade standards.

Readiness Criteria

Placement into Compacted 7/8 should ensure the student meets the following Readiness Criteria:

  • A score of 85% or higher on the Math 6 Challenge Exam.
  • A score of 95% or higher on the 5th grade Common Math Assessment (CMA).
  • A level 4 or higher on the 4th grade SBA.
  • Consistently demonstrates Standards for Mathematical Practice.

Standards for Mathematical Practice:

Common Core expects much more than just procedural skill and fluency. Students are expected to achieve deep conceptual understanding, to demonstrate critical thinking skills, to make connections, to persevere in problem-solving, to apply their learning to solving problems in real world contexts, to justify their reasoning, and to clearly communicate their math thinking. Read more about the Standards for Mathematical Practice at Standards for Mathematical Practice.

Compacting Is Preferred To Skipping

The authors of the Common Core recommend against skipping content as a way to accelerate in math. Only students who have truly mastered the content of Math 6 should consider skipping a year of math.

What is Exceptional Placement?

Exceptional placement provides an additional acceleration option for the very small number of students who are ready. 

CLICK HERE for the district Challenge Exam process.


Secondary Mathematics Specialist (6-12) 
Corrine Williams 
(360) 604-1001 ext. 4676


green tree and Mt. St. Helens silhouette

13501 NE 28th Street  |  P.O. Box 8910  |  Vancouver, WA 98668

Phone (360) 604-4000  |  Fax (360) 892-5307  |  Office Hours: 8:00 am - 5:00 pm

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