Mrs. Katheryn Cowans

Phone: 1 (714) 569 - 6300


Degrees and Certifications:

MA Education, Brandman University BA Biological Sciences, CSU Channel Islands Certificated in IB Biological Sciences International Baccalaureate Biology Trained

Mrs. Katheryn Cowans

This website is used as a basis for parent and student contact with me. Please email me if you have any questions. All students have access to Google Classroom so that the information provided for the class is password protected as required by the copywritten material. Below I have outlined basic class expectations.


A complete copy of the syllabus for both Honors and IB Biology are located in the students Google Classroom. Below, you will find the highlights of the syllabus sans any copywritten material. Please see the hard copy of the syllabus each student recieved on the first day or the digital copy in Google Classroom for the entire syllabus. 


Parent Conference Availability: 

If you would like to have a parent/teacher conference please email me to set it up. I am available first and 6th period or after school.


Grading Policy: 

All assessments and assignments will be given a letter grade based on the following scale: (A) 90% (B) 80-89.9% (C) 70-79.9% (D) 60-69.9% (F) 59.9% and below.

For Honors Biology all assessments and assignments are weighted in the gradebook using the following weight percentages: (10%) Classwork and Homework (30%) Labs and Projects (35%) Tests and Quizzes and (25%) Semester final 

For IB Biology all assessments and assignments are weighted in the gradebook using the following weight percentages: (40%) Summative assignments (20%) Formative assignments  (30%) Guided practice and (10%) Independent practice

IF I offer extra credit, it is only eligible to students with zero missing assignments. I will not round grades up. 


Required Daily Materials: 

- Writing utensil: pencil or blue/black ink pen (no other color)

- Fully charged Chromebook (or bring charger to school so it can be plugged in)

- Lined paper

- 100 page composition notebook. (This may be left in the classroom)

The school and I have provided the student with every required material. Students who misuse these materials will have to provide their own. 


Behavior Expectations:

At Saddleback High School, all students are expected to stay on T.R.A.C.K. This acronym is the basis of my classroom expectations. Behaviors that do not exemplify Tolerance, Responsibility, Achievement, Community, and Knowledge will not be tolerated. This includes, but is not limited to:

Being on time: You are on time when you are in your seat, backpack off, and materials out ready to learn by the time the bell rings.

Using electronics appropriately: You will bring your Chromebook and charger to class every day. Cell phones may not be used in lieu of a Chromebook and must be kept in your backpack on silent. The internet should never be used for purposes other than the tasks assigned by the teacher. Speakers and headphones are not allowed to be used at any time. These items should be taken off and placed into your backpack for the duration of the class.

Eating or drinking in class: No food or drink may be consumed by students in the science building due to health concerns. Potentially dangerous biological and chemical specimen are used regularly throughout the classroom and building. The risk of cross-contamination is too great to allow students to eat or drink. Bottled water in a sealable container is allowed.

Using class materials respectfully and responsibly: All classroom supplies provided must be used with the upmost respect and care. Materials should be used for their intended purpose only. All lids should be placed tightly onto materials when they are done being used. Materials should be returned to their box in an organized fashion. If any materials are missing, lose their labels, or are used up please tell me immediately so that I can replace them.

Respecting the classroom, other students, the teacher, and yourself: Students should clean up any messes they make and notify me if they see a mess left behind from a previous class. Failure to clean up after yourself or notifying me of a mess left behind may result in consequences that match the degree of the mess. Language used in the classroom should be respectful and academic in nature. I have no tolerance for hate speech towards others. Language used towards the teacher should also be respectful in nature. Any frustrations or concerns with the teachers should be discussed in private. When the teacher is talking, students should stop what they are doing and give their full attention.

Using class time appropriately: For the duration of the period, students should be working on assignments given by the teacher. In the event that you finish early, “free” time should be used to review materials, work on other biology assignments, or help a table partner if they need it. It is never acceptable to work on other class assignments or engage in non-academic things.

Failure to remain on T.R.A.C.K. will result in consequences that appropriately responds to the misbehavior. Often, students will be verbally warned first. If redirection does not occur a detention and/or a parent phone all will occur. Serious or repetitive misbehaviors will result in a referral.


Academic Honesty: I follow the IB model of Academic Honesty. In a nutshell, students should turn in work that is of their original thinking. If the use of another's work is turned in, they must cite it properly. It is never ok to turn in the work of another student (past or present) as their own. All academic dishonesty cases will recieve a zero for the grade.

I reserve the right to amend my syllabus and class expectations at any time without warning with the best interest in student education and understanding as the reason for change. All students and parent/guardians have signed and agreed to these terms when they signed the syllabus.