I have a feeling I already know my opinion and can't think of much people could say to change my mind (just a little disclaimer) but I would like to know what you would do in this situation.
We are a title 1 school with 70% on free or reduced lunch.
The state set up very restricted path to accelerated math courses in 2005. Basically, if you are not on the path by 8th grade, it is virtually impossible to take calculus in high school. The only way is to take a class over the summer - that with the economy, means $200-$500.
Remember the 70% free and reduced?
So - kids not realizing this, don't get on the path in time. (or I should say their parents don't realize it).
If you had a kid who was really bright and dedicated and not on the right path but willing to do ANYTHING on his own but but able to afford a summer class, would you encourage him to try for calculus? Or would you point out that without a traditional (as in seat in a classroom) class in trig it is not possible?