Outlining teacher expectations and student responsibilities in a high school contract facilitates a smoothly operating classroom and lays the groundwork for academic success. Having a contract in place that clearly and accurately outlines teacher expectations has the potential to help students self-monitor academic and behavioral requirements. Also, setting specific academic responsibilities within the contract is a great way to help students set and reach the success level they desire.
High school contracts between teachers and students may focus solely on behavioral expectations. At the high school level, a behavior contract is typically used in specific situations when students are having difficulty controlling their own behavior. For instance, turning in a weekly agenda could be a target behavior for a particular student. A behavior contract would spell out exactly what the positive and negative consequences would be for failure to turn in the agenda.
Contracts between high school teachers and students may also set forth clear and concise information about academic expectations. A contract may outline what grade will be received if all or a specific number of the academic requirements of the course are met, including in-class work and homework. Some contracts align percentage of completed assignments with a grade. For instance, a student who completes 88 percent of assignments, contributes in class and turns in all homework assignments might get a grade of 92.
A contract often informs the student of consequences, enabling the students to self-monitor and take responsibility for his or her actions. If the contract includes key words or actions to warn the student that he is in danger of violating the contract, it is the student's responsibility to adjust his behavior according. For instance, if the student's contract focuses on class disruption, the teacher may simply say the student's name, tap his desk or make a gesture to remind him that he is about to get off track.
Level of Success Contracts
Students have the responsibility to abide by all provisions of school or class contracts that focus on academic behaviors. Student who sign a classroom academic contract have a responsibility to identify what level of success or grade they wish to achieve, and then to work toward that goal. Students determine, before the course starts, which track, such as A, B or C track, on which they wish to work. They are then responsible for satisfactorily completing only those assignments on their chosen track.
Katherine Bradley began writing in 2006. Her education and leadership articles have been published on Education.com, Montessori Leadership Online and the Georgia Educational Researcher. Bradley completed a Ph.D. in educational leadership from Mercer University in 2009.