Graduation Cap with Diploma

Graduation Requirements

  • High school graduation is a highlight in every student's life; a celebration marking the successful completion of 13 years of education. To ensure that our students fulfill all the necessary requirements to graduate, parents/guardians are encouraged to track and monitor their students high school credits. Parents should review the number of standard credits and verified credits their children have earned beginning with entry into the ninth grade. This can be accomplished by communicating regularly with your child's assigned school counselor during their academic careers. Counselors can also help families understand school requirements and access the resources that are available to support students.

    The following questions and answers are intended to assist you with keeping your child on track for their graduation requirements. If you have additional questions, please schedule a meeting or a consultation with your child's school counselor.

  • What are the graduation requirements in the Commonwealth of Virginia?

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    Students pursuing a Standard Diploma or Advanced Studies Diploma must earn both standard and verified credits if they are to graduate from high school and participate in graduation ceremonies. Other options available to special education students in addition to these diploma is the Applied Studies Diploma. To determine the graduation requirements for your child, you and your scholar must consider both the type of diploma sought and the year your child first started ninth grade. Students will meet with their school couselor for an Academic Career Plan to help guide which diploma would be the best for both career interest and academic goals.

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  • What is the difference between a standard and a verified credit?

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    A standard credit is awarded for a course in which the student successfully completes the requirements of the course. A verified credit is awarded for a course in which the student earns a standard unit of credit and achieves a passing score on a corresponding end-of-course SOL test or a substitute assessment approved by the Board of Education.

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  • What credits are required to receive Advanced Studies Diploma (9th Grader 2013-2014)?

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    The credits required for an Advanced Studies Diploma for students entering the ninth grade in 2013-2014 and beyond are listed below. The Advanced Studies Diploma requires twenty-six (26) credits for students entering ninth grade in 2013- 2014 and beyond and completion of one virtual course. Of the 26 credits, nine (9) must be verified credits as follows: two (2) English, two (2) math, two (2) science, two (2) social studies, and one student-selected test students must have to graduate.

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Advanced Studies Diploma Charat
  • What do the asterisks (*) mean under the Advanced Diploma Option?

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    * Students usually earn one standard credit and the two verified credits through the English 11 class.

    ** Students who complete a career and technical educational program sequence and pass an examination or occupational competency assessment in a career and technical education field that confers certification or an occupational competency credential from a recognized industry, or trade or professional association or acquires a professional license in a career and technical education field from the Commonwealth of Virginia may substitute the certification, competency credential, or license, for (i) the student selected verified credit and (ii) either a science or history and social science verified credit when the certification, license, or credential confers more than one verified credit. The examination or occupational competency assessment must be approved by the Virginia Board of Education as an additional test to verify student achievement.

    *** Students may choose a verified credit earned in an academic class or may choose a verified credit earned in a Virginia Board of Education approved test in computer science, technology and career and technical education.

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  • What are the specific units of credit to receive an Advanced Studies (9th Grade 2013-2014)?

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    Specific units of credit for an Advanced Studies Diploma (26 Credits required) include:

    Mathematics- Courses completed to satisfy this requirement shall include at least three different course selections from among Algebra I, Geometry, Algebra II, or other mathematics courses above the level of Algebra II. The Virginia Board of Education shall approve courses to satisfy this requirement.

    Laboratory Science- Courses completed to satisfy this requirement shall include course selections from at least three different science disciplines from among: earth sciences, biology, chemistry, or physics or completion of the sequence of science courses required for the International Baccalaureate Diploma (Note: Oceanography and Astronomy are in the Earth Sciences discipline). The Virginia Board of Education may approve additional courses to satisfy this requirement.

    History and Social Sciences- Courses completed to satisfy this requirement shall include Virginia and U.S. History, Virginia and U.S. Government, and two courses in either world history or geography or both. The Virginia Board of Education shall approve courses to satisfy this requirement.

    Foreign World Languages- Three years of one language or two years each of two languages.

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  • What credits are required for a student to receive a Standard Diploma (9th Grade 2013-2014)?

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    The credits required for a Standard Diploma for students entering the ninth grade in 2013-2014 and beyond are listed below. The Standard Diploma requires 22 (22) credits for students entering ninth grade in 2013-2014 and beyond. Completion of one virtual course as well as successful completion of a Career and Technical Industry Certification. Of the 22 credits, six (6) must be verified credits as follows: two (2) English, one (1) math, one (1) science, one (1) social studies, and one (1) student-selected test students must have to graduate.

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Standard Diploma Chart
  • What do the asterisks (*) mean under the Standard Diploma?

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    * Students usually earn one standard credit and the two verified credits through the English 11 class.

    ** Students who complete a career and technical educational program sequence and pass an examination or occupational competency assessment in a career and technical education field that confers certification or an occupational competency credential from a recognized industry, or trade or professional association or acquires a professional license in a career and technical education field from the Commonwealth of Virginia may substitute the certification, competency credential, or license, for (i) the student selected verified credit and (ii) either a science or history and social science verified credit when the certification, license, or credential confers more than one verified credit. The examination or occupational competency assessment must be approved by the Virginia Board of Education as an additional test to verify student achievement.

    *** Students may choose a verified credit earned in an academic class or may choose a verified credit earned in a Virginia Board of Education approved test in computer science, technology and career and technical education.

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  • What are the specific credit requirements to fulfill the 22 credits to receive a Standard Diploma?

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    Specific units of credit required for a Standard Diploma (22 Credits required) are outlined below:

    Mathematics- Courses completed to satisfy this requirement shall include at least two different course selections from among: Algebra I; Geometry; Algebra, Functions and Data Analysis; Algebra II or other mathematics courses above the level of Algebra II. The Virginia Board of Education shall approve courses to satisfy this requirement.

    Laboratory Sciences- Courses completed to meet this requirement shall include course selections from at least two different science disciplines: earth sciences, biology, chemistry or physics (Note: Oceanography and Astronomy are in the Earth Sciences discipline). The Virginia Board of Education may approve additional courses to satisfy this requirement.

    History and Social Sciences- Courses completed to satisfy this requirement shall include Virginia and U.S. History, Virginia and U.S. Government, and one course in either world history or geography or both. The Virginia Board of Education may approve additional courses to satisfy this requirement.

    Sequential electives- These electives can be chosen from a concentration of courses selected from a variety of options (fine arts, world languages, or career and technical education) that may be planned to ensure the completion of a focused sequence of elective courses. Students may take such focused sequence of elective courses in consecutive years or any two years of high school. Such focused sequence of elective courses shall provide a foundation for further education or training or preparation for employment. Sequential electives need not be taken in consecutive years. They MAY NOT be taken in the same year.

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