2011- 2012 AP United States Government Registration

This course and its syllabus have met the requirements of the Collegeboard AP Class Audit and have been approved as a preparatory class for the AP United States Government Exam.


Early registration is encouraged. Class size is limited.



Rachel Califf

(724) 331-0673



Please also submit with your completed registration:

·        An introductory bio, written by the student about the student, approximately a page long. It should be a basic “intro,” and need not mention the student’s academic schedule or previous courses. Instead, the student should strive to share a little about who they are and what they enjoy doing, what their interests and passions are, where they live, etc. They may submit a “rough draft” to me, but their final draft will be submitted on the website when the course begins, to their personalized “bio” page.


Students accepted to the course must:

·        Submit a recent digital photograph to the website when the course begins. If a student has technical difficulties with this task, I will be available to assist them.

·        Pay tuition (as directed on www.pahomeschoolers.com) by August 15 or student may forfeit their “seat” to someone on the waiting list. Students who complete registration and pay tuition prior to July 1st are eligible for the discounted tuition rate.

·        Purchase textbooks and in have them in the student's possession prior to the start of the course.

·        Notify Mrs. Califf of any changes that occur to this form throughout the year. Please keep a copy of this registration on file for that purpose.


Basic Registration Form:

Student's name:

(Because names don’t always tell me…) Male or Female: 

Student's age & grade level for the 2011-2012 academic year:

Student's Birthday (mm/dd/yy): 

Does student have full Internet access?

Are there any limitations to the student's access?

Student's email address:

Parent(s)' email address (also required, see below):

Home address & phone number of both parent(s) and student:



Is your student homeschooled?


Has student participated in online AP courses in the past? If so, please list courses, teachers, dates, and grades:


Is student currently taking -- or planning to take -- additional AP courses? If so, please list courses:


Has your student withdrawn from any AP courses with PA Homeschoolers in the past? If yes, please explain why.


Is student involved in any extra-curricular activities, an "after-school job," music competitions, community college courses or any other VERY time-consuming outside activities?

If so, how does the student plan to balance the workload? Will a parent be involved in overseeing coursework? Is the student capable of planning ahead, as opposed to consistently seeking extensions on assignment deadlines?


Has the student ever taken any government-related courses before, or participated in any government-related clubs/activities? Read any current affairs or political books recently? Make a regular habit of reading / watching national news? Please discuss any background in civics or government here.


Rate your student’s knowledge/experience with United States Government on a scale of 1 (no knowledge) to 10 (very well informed): 


Does the student have knowledge of basic essay writing style, including grammar, spelling and style? Is the student comfortable with writing essays? Is student comfortable with taking timed tests and writing timed essays?


How does your student learn best?


Does your student have any learning disabilities or special needs about which I should be aware that may affect his/her performance in the class, ability to handle assignments, or the way the exam may need to be administered in terms of College Board guidelines?


To be written by student:

Why are you taking this course?


What is one thing you are particularly curious about regarding government and politics?


Please Read:

I understand parents to be responsible for their children's education, regardless of the medium they choose. I assume that parents will actively supervise their children as necessary in all aspects of the course, including deadline management and academic performance. I also assume that parents will remain aware of and responsible for their children's behavior in any correspondence with their instructor and with their classmates. I will notify parents where I detect a problem or declining performance trend, but I assume that parents will already be aware of these issues because of their own active supervision of their children.


However, this is a college level course and, as such, I hope and assume that my students do not necessarily need parental oversight but instead are responsible enough to complete assignments thoughtfully and on time. I don't make it a habit to nag my students. Students should note that repeated lack of participation, failure to hand in assignments and failure to respond to emails may result in dismissal from the course or failing grades in the class and on the AP exam. Student should also note that I respond much better to students who plan ahead or who, in failing to do so, admit their error and take responsibility. I also respond better to students who take initiative in contacting me with their concerns or problems rather than having their parents do so on their behalf.


Questions and concerns about assignments are encouraged at all times. I prefer for my students to be in frequent communication with me, via the website and via email. So they should never consider it “bothering the teacher” to jot me an email. If they do not, it can be difficult for me to “get to know them” and evaluate their retention of the material, or to assist them with difficult concepts, particularly if they do not let me know that they are struggling. Parents are also welcome to participate in the course at any time and oversee their student's work as needed or desired.


If your family is planning a vacation during the school year, I need the student to notify me as early as possible to make arrangements for class assignments. Certain assignments can not be “made up,” regardless of the circumstances.  


Due to the nature of the medium, parents and students should expect a few minor technical difficulties throughout the year. Usually, they will be remedied quickly and have little to do with the individual connection. I will not penalize students for this, but expect students and parents to responsible for taking care of any technical difficulties that do occur on their end, whether it is computer or Internet related. Students should call me if they are unable to access email or the website for an extended period of time, or when an assignment is due. Until the problem is fixed, the student should keep up with reading assignments and will make up written assignments afterwards. There will be no late penalty. Failure to remedy the technical difficulties may result in dismissal from the course.


Tuition details on Website: http://www.aphomeschoolers.com


Parental Email Address:

If parent doesn't have a separate email account, one must be obtained. This is easily done via www.hotmail.com or www.yahoo.com or www.google.com where you can sign up for a free account. I request that this account be checked regularly for progress and class reports. Please do not let students have your password, as it has been my experience that students not doing well in the class have sometimes intercepted my letters of concern to parents or forged letters back to me posing as their parents. As email is my primary means of contacting students and parents enrolled in my online classes, this is a particularly important request. Thank you for honoring it.


Notification of Acceptance and Audit Option:

Please return completed application to:



Your application will be reviewed and returned in a timely manner. (Please allow 1-2 weeks for a response as I do have several long trips planned for the summer, during which I may not be able to access email. Feel free to call me at the number listed above if you are concerned about your application.) Please do not pay tuition for the course until you have received notification of “acceptance” into the course. If there are concerns about your application, we will address those prior to your acceptance.


If you are accepted to the class once all the seats have already been filled, you will be given the option to “audit” the course. Auditing the class costs $150. It will allow you access to the course and all course communications to registered students. I will not, however, grade or keep records for students who are auditing the course. Auditing enables a student to suitably keep up with coursework so that they may jump into any seats that become available should another student withdraw during the period allowed, through December 31st. At that point, a student would pay the balance of the tuition, adjusted for the date of their entrance into the course.


Course Website Address and Passwords

Students accepted with full registration or under the audit option will receive the course website address and passwords once they have (a) paid tuition and (b) the course website is ready for the 2011-2012 academic year. This usually occurs in mid-August.


When your student pays tuition, they will be asked for their name and “password.” Please have student input their name as they would like it to appear on the course throughout the year. Also, please make sure your student memorizes their password, as it will be needed frequently throughout the year.