Rising Freshmen Presentation

Welcome Freshmen Class!


This presentation is designed to give you some basic information about Langley and help you get acquainted and what to expect as you enter your first year of high school.  In this overview, you will learn about the courses that are offered, what courses you will be required to take and various other important information to get you started.  High school is an exciting time and we look forward to welcoming you to Langley High School!

Our Student Services Department is here to help, so if you have any questions or need assistance in deciding what is best for you, contact your counselor.


Director of Student Services

Braden Peterson bjpeterson@fcps.edu




Standard Diploma Requirements


Standard Credits: 4 Verified Credits: 2


Standard Credits: 3 Verified Credits:1

Laboratory Science

Standard Credits: 3 Verified Credits: 1

History and Social Sciences

Standard Credits: 4 Verified Credits: 1

Health and Physical Education ( Emergency First Aid pass)

Standard Credits: 2

World Languages, Fine Arts or Career & Technical Education

Standard Credits: 1

Economics and Personal Finance (Virtual Course)

Standard Credits: 1

Fine Art or CTE

Standard Credits: 1

Electives (must include sequential elective)

Standard Credits: 3

*Career and Technical Education Credential

Student Selected Test (SOL)

Verified Credits: 1

Total Credits

Total Standard Credits: 22 Total Verified Credits: 6

Advanced Studies Diploma Requirements


Standards Credits: 4 Verified Credits: 2


Standards Credits: 4 Verified Credits: 2

Laboratory Science

Standards Credits: 4 Verified Credits: 2

History and Social Sciences

Standard Credits: 4 Verified Credits: 2

World Language (3 credits sequential or 2+2)

Standard Credits: 3

Health and Physical Education (Emergency First AidPass)

Standard Credits: 2

Fine Arts or Career & Technical Education

Standard Credits: 1

Economics and Personal Finance (Virtual Course)

Standards Credits: 1


Standards Credits: 3

Student Selected Test

Verified Credits: 1

Virtual Course *(Econ. & Pers. Fin. meets this requirement)

Total Credits

Standards Credits: 26 Verified Credits: 9

Verified Credit Requirements

Students earn a Verified Credit when they pass a class and pass the associated SOL test. Students may also earn Verified Credits through VDOE approved assessments.

Courses with associated SOL tests:

  • English 11 (2 tests -reading and writing)
  • World History 1, World History 2, US VA History
  • Algebra 1, Geometry, Algebra 2
  • Biology, Chemistry, Geosystems

Verified Credit requirements depend on diploma type.

Green & Gold Block Schedule

Langley operates on a daily rotating block schedule. This schedule is referred to as the Green-Gold schedule. Green and Gold identify the class periods that meet on a particular day.

  • On Green Days odd numbered class periods (1,3, 5 and 7) meet
  • On Gold Days even numbered class periods (2, 3*, 4, and 6) meet 

*Third period meets on both Green and Gold days and is known as a common period.

The Green-Gold schedule is set at the beginning of the school year and does not change. For example, if schools are closed due to weather on a Green day, and re-opened the next day, which is a Gold day, then the students report to the Gold day classes. Adjustments may be made if one particular day is missed more often than the other.

Saxon Time

Saxon Time is a 30 minute block held each day after first block and is reserved for students to:

  • Visit with teachers for extra help
  • Study
  • Catch up on assignments
  • If your grade is a C or below you may be assigned to see a specific teacher during Saxon Time
  • Service Learning twice a month

English 9 vs English Honors 

English 9:

  • “The Scarlet Ibis”
  • “The Most Dangerous Game”
  • “The Gift of the Magi”
  • “The Necklace”
  • The Odyssey (Excerpts)
  • The Hound of the Baskervilles
  • A Long Way Gone
  • Romeo and Juliet
  • “The Man in the Water”

English 9 Honors:

  • The Epic of Gilgamesh Medea (supplementary)
  • The Odyssey
  • The Inferno
  • A Long Way Gone
  • Romeo and Juliet
  • "The Man in the Water“
  • Poetry
  • Choice from these titles:
  • The Secret Life of Bees
  • The Book of Lost Things T
  • The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
  • Required summer reading:
  • A chapter from Michener’s The Source: “The Bee Eater.”

Biology Honors students should be…

  • Highly organized
  • Strong, independent workers
  • Good analytical thinkers
  • Able to handle an Independent Research Project (IRP)
  • The IRP is worth 10% of the course grade.

Students develop their IRP from January through May, and present to their class at the end of the school year.

Geometry Honors / Algebra II Honors Students need to…

  • Have a well developed mathematical vocabulary to be able to study from the text book
  • Be able to work independently
  • Be able to make connections and conjectures based on prior knowledge

Teachers guide students through new concepts but do not present 100% of the material in class

World Languages at Langley

  • Spanish
  • French
  • German
  • Russian
  • Japanese
  • Latin
  • Chinese at the Marshall Academy

Should I Take Honors Classes?

  • Am I making an A or B+ in the corresponding middle school course?
  • Am I intellectually curious?
  • Do I have an interest/passion for the subject?
  • Do I do my homework on a daily basis without much supervision?
  • Do I have an out of school schedule that will allow more time to focus on school work?
  • Love to read in Humanities Honors

Should I Take an AP Class?

1-2 hours of homework every night and the workload of a college class

Essential Skills:

  • Critical Thinking
  • Excellent Reading & Writing Skills
  • Self-motivated work ethic

Pace of the course – Material presented at an accelerated pace, often with expectation of student learning additional material outside class

Is it better to get an “A” in a standard class or a “B” in an AP or Honors Class class?

  • Generally, students who can earn a “B” or above in an AP class should consider taking the AP class. A “B” in an AP class amounts to a 4.0 weighted GPA and a stronger schedule.
  • A “B” in an honors course amounts to a 3.5 weighted GPA with a stronger schedule whereas an “A” in a regular class is a 4.0 GPA.

Honors/AP Classes – Grade Weighting

  • Honors Classes add an additional GPA weight of .5 to a student’s grade on their transcript
  • Example – an A in English 9 is a 4.0 whereas an A in English 9 HN is a 4.5
  • AP classes add an additional GPA weight of 1.0 to a student’s grade on their transcript
  • Example – an A in Film Study is a 4.0 whereas an A in AP Human Geography is a 5.0

** Your grade in the class does not change, this only effects your overall GPA

High School Counts

Some rising freshmen students already have a high school transcript (Algebra 1 or World language level 1)

  • Expunge it or not?
  • Retake or not?
  • Summer School

Questions about appropriate placement for 9th grade?

Talk with your middle school teachers and counselors.

Humanities Electives Open to 9th Graders

  • Film Study
  • Forensics/Debate
  • Journalism 1
  • World Religions/ Philosophy
  • AP Human Geography (an elective – not a social studies graduation requirements)
  • Current Affairs/ Political Science CTE: Career & Technology Education Electives

Intro to Marketing

  • Intro to Marketing - Fashion Emphasis
  • Programming
  • Info Systems
  • Design and Tech
  • Basic Tech Drawing

**The Standard Diploma graduation requirement of an Industry Certification Exam will be offered with each of these courses.

Performing Arts Electives Open to 9th Graders

  • Band*
  • Percussion Ensemble 
  • Jazz Ensemble (8th pd)
  • Mixed Ensemble
  • Music Theory
  • Orchestra*
  • Choir
  • Theater Arts 1
  • Tech Theater 1
  • Broadcast Journalism 

*Audition required 2 major theater productions a year

Fine Arts Electives Open to 9th Graders

  • Studio Art & Design 1
  • Computer Graphics 1
  • Photography 1
  • Photojournalism 1
  • Ceramics 1/Sculpture 1

Health/PE Electives Open to 9th Graders

  • Sports Medicine

Economics & Personal Finance

A graduation REQUIREMENT

  • This course also satisfies the Virtual Course requirement
  • The W!SE test also satisfies the CTE credential requirement

AP Macro/Micro Economics (available to 11th and 12th grade only) may be used to satisfy this requirement.

We don’t recommend taking EPF until 11th or 12th grade

Summer options too!

Keys to High School Success


  • Challenging courses that won’t overwhelm you.
  • Get Involved in Sports/Clubs/Arts. Langley offers so many options!
  • Healthy Choices: Diet, Sleep, Organization.

Use resources to develop routines and good academic habits.

  • Fall Sports start August 1 (Tryouts)
  • You can start just about any club you want

Additional programs for Freshmen:

  • Freshman Transition
  • M&M Program

Typical 9th Grade Schedule 

  • English 9
  • World History I
  • Biology
  • Math
  • Health/PE 9
  • World Language
  • Elective
  • Average class size is 28 to 32 students per class

Honors English & World History Students should…

  • Love reading
  • Be able to comprehend multiple chapters of a novel in a night
  • Be able to handle 1.5 hours of homework per class period

A student taking both English & History Honors will have these courses ‘linked’ in the schedule.

Summer School

As of July 1….students are considered high school students therefore summer school courses will be permanently on student’s transcript.

Sports & Clubs

Activities Fair for Rising Freshmen (April)

  • Some sports are tryouts/some have a freshman team
  • Fall Sports: Football, Cheerleading, Cross Country, Golf, Field Hockey, Volleyball
  • Winter Sports: Basketball, Wrestling, Gymnastics, Swim & Dive, Indoor Track
  • Spring Sports: Baseball, Crew, Lacrosse, Soccer, Tennis, Softball, Track & Field

VHSL Requirements

  • All physicals for sports must be dated after May 1, 2017
  • All physicals are due on a VHSL physical form
  • Concussion & VHSL due before playing/trying out for sports

Next Steps

  • 8th grade students complete registration form with parents and return it to their middle school counselors
  • LHS will get all registration forms from middle schools by March 15, 2017
  • Confirmation of course selections will be mailed home mid-April.
  • Registration of students transferring from private schools begins February 23rd.
  • Freshman Orientation is August 23rd.
  • See you August 28th – First Day of School!

Already Thinking Ahead To… College?

Top Ten Factors Used In Admissions Decisions (NACAC 2014)

  1. Grades in College Prep Courses (Honors & AP)
  2. Grades in All Courses
  3. Strength of Curriculum
  4. Admission Test Scores (SAT and/or ACT)
  5. Essay or Writing Sample
  6. Counselor Recommendation
  7. Applicant’s Demonstrated Interest
  8. Teacher Recommendation(s)
  9. Class Rank (Not applicable for FCPS applicants)
  10. AP Test Scores

Note What Is NOT in Top 10:

  • Extracurricular Activities (12)
  • SAT II Scores (13
  • Interview (14)
  • Work (16)