I - Instruction




Graduation Requirements

NEPN/NSBA Code:  IKF


Before entering high school, students need to know the standards for attaining a high school diploma in order to plan an appropriate, sequential, educational program to meet that goal.  The awarding of a diploma will be contingent on the demonstration of proficiency in the Yarmouth High School school-wide and learning area graduation expectations in addition to the accumulation of credits.

To be awarded a high school diploma from Yarmouth High School, students graduating in the Class of 2019 and beyond must demonstrate proficiency in the content areas identified in the Yarmouth High School school-wide and learning area graduation expectations, and fulfill all additional graduation requirements set by the School Committee.

The Superintendent, through the high school principal or other designee, shall be responsible for making accurate information concerning diploma requirements available to incoming students and their parents prior to the start of their ninth grade school year.  A copy of this policy will be disseminated to all incoming ninth grade students at the time of course selection.  This policy will also be included in every edition of the high school student handbook.

The School Committee has approved the following schedule of minimum requirements for graduation, which includes minimum requirements specified by the State of Maine.  The School Committee is aware that current law and regulations are subject to change. 

The School Committee expects the Superintendent/designee to inform students and parents as soon as practicable of any additional State-imposed standards that must be met before students may be awarded a high school diploma.

I.   DIPLOMA REQUIREMENTS

The awarding of a diploma by Yarmouth High School will be contingent on the demonstration of proficiency in the Yarmouth High School school-wide and learning area graduation expectations, in addition to the accumulation of credits.  The student must also fulfill any other requirements specified in this policy. 

Students must meet the following requirements in order to be awarded a high school diploma.

            A.    Demonstrate proficiency in meeting standards in the following content areas of the Learning Results.  Meeting the standards entails demonstrating proficiency for each standard within each content area, thereby earning the minimum number of credits specified below:

                                    English Language Arts - 4

                                    Mathematics - 3

                                    Science and Technology - 3

                                    Social Studies - 3

                                    Health Education and Physical Education – 1.5

                                    Visual and Performing Arts - 1

                                    World Languages – no credit requirement, prior to class of  2021, 1 credit

                                           for class of 2021 and beyond

                                    Career and Education Development (embedded in the other content areas)

                                    Elective course offerings – 4.5 

            B.    Meet the Yarmouth High School school-wide and learning area graduation expectations by demonstrating the ability to:

1. Communicate effectively;

2. Exhibit personal responsibility, civic engagement, and global awareness;

3. Work independently and collaboratively;

4. Demonstrate critical, creative, and innovative thinking; and,

5. Develop understanding through inquiry, research, and synthesis. 

            C.    Successfully complete two career exploration projects through which he/she will demonstrate research, presentation, and technology application skills.

            D.    Successfully complete 60 hours of community service.

MULTIPLE PATHWAYS TO THE AWARDING OF A PROFICIENCY-BASED DIPLOMA

Yarmouth High School’s educational program is designed to enable students to satisfy graduation requirements in four years through a sequence of educational (learning) experiences/courses providing opportunities to gain and demonstrate proficiency in all of the Yarmouth High School school-wide and learning area graduation expectations.

Students following a traditional pathway will:

            A.    Engage in educational experiences in the content areas of English Language Arts, Mathematics, and Science and Technology in each year of their high school program and earn a minimum of four (4) credits in English Language Arts, three (3) credits in Mathematics, and three (3) credits in Science and Technology.

            B.    Engage in at least three educational experiences in the content area of Social Studies during their high school program and earn a minimum of three (3) credits in Social Studies.

            C.    Engage in at least one educational experience in the content area of Visual and Performing Arts during their high school program and earn a minimum of one (1) credit in Visual and Performing Arts.

            D.    Engage in at least one educational experience and earn a minimum of one (1) credit in World Languages during their high school program (students in the Class of 2021 and beyond);

            E.    Engage in at least two Health and Physical Education experiences during their high school program and earn a minimum of 1.5 credits in Health and Physical Education.

            F.     Engage in educational experiences that integrate career and education development.

Students following a traditional pathway must be enrolled in the equivalent of a minimum of five full year learning experiences/courses or integrated equivalents in each of their high school years.

Students following an alternate pathway may demonstrate proficiency in the Yarmouth High School school-wide and learning area graduation expectations and earn credit toward graduation by participating successfully in a variety of academic programming, including:

            Early college/dual enrollment courses

            Career and technical education programming

            Online/virtual learning

            Apprenticeships, internships and/or field work

            Exchange programs

            Independent study

            Alternative education/At Risk programming

            Adult education

Each pathway must provide a quality learning experience comparable in rigor to Yarmouth High School’s educational experience (course) offerings.

STUDENTS RECEIVING SPECIAL EDUCATION SERVICES

Students who achieve proficiency in the content standards of the Learning Results and Guiding Principles, as specified in the goals, objectives, and accommodations of their Individualized Education Plans (IEP) will be awarded diplomas.

II. ADDITIONAL CONSIDERATIONS APPLICABLE TO THE AWARDING OF A DIPLOMA FROM YARMOUTH HIGH SCHOOL

A.  Transfer Students

For students who transfer to Yarmouth High School from another state or from an educational program that is not required to be aligned with the Yarmouth High School school-wide and learning area graduation expectations, the Yarmouth High School Principal shall determine the value of the student’s prior educational experience towards meeting graduation requirements. 

B.   Home-schooled Students

For home-schooled students wishing to receive a diploma from Yarmouth High School, the Yarmouth High School Principal shall determine the value of the student’s prior educational experience toward meeting graduation credit requirements.  A home schooled student must have attended Yarmouth High School for a minimum of four (4) semesters or taken a minimum of ten (10) courses at Yarmouth High School in order to receive a Yarmouth High School diploma. 

C.   Delayed Awarding of Diplomas

A student who leaves Yarmouth High School to attend an accredited, degree-granting institution of higher education may upon satisfactory completion of the freshman year be awarded a high school diploma, provided that the student has notified the principal at the time of the early admission. 

D.   Early Awarding of Diplomas

A student who has met the State’s and the School Committee’s diploma requirements in fewer than four years of high school may be awarded a diploma.  

E.   Extended Study

Students are eligible for extended years of study to complete the requirements of a diploma if they have not reached the age of 20 at the start of the school year.  Students eligible for extended years of study may be referred to adult education or other resources suitable to young learners.  Extended study for students with disabilities shall be specified in the student’s Individualized Education Plan.

F.    Participation in Graduation Ceremony

A student must complete all Yarmouth School Committee requirements for a high school diploma in order to participate in graduation exercises.

Legal Reference:  20-A M.R.S.A. § 4722

Ch. 127 § 7 (Me. Dept. of Ed. Rule)

Cross Reference: IHCDA – Post-Secondary Enrollment Options

Adopted:  January 8, 2015

Revised:   November 9, 2017, February 7, 2019