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Austin Public Schools

Policy 613 - Graduation Requirements

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[Note: The requirements set forth in this policy govern the graduation standards that Minnesota public schools must require for a high school diploma for all students.]

I. PURPOSE

The purpose of this policy is to set forth requirements for graduation from the school district.

II. GENERAL STATEMENT OF POLICY

The policy of the school district is that all students entering grade 8 in the 2012-2013 school year and later must demonstrate, as determined by the school district, their satisfactory completion of the credit requirements and their understanding of academic standards. The school district must adopt graduation requirements that meet or exceed state graduation requirements established in law or rule.

III. DEFINITIONS

  • “Academic standard” means: (1) a statewide adopted expectation for student learning in the content areas of language arts, mathematics, science, social studies, physical education, or the arts, or (2) a locally adopted expectation for student learning in health, the arts, career and technical education, or world languages.
  • “Credit” means a student’s successful completion of an academic year of study or a student’s mastery of the applicable subject matter, as determined by the school district.
  • “Section 504 Accommodation” means the defined appropriate accommodations or modifications that must be made in the school environment to address the needs of an individual student with disabilities.
  • “Individualized Education Program” or “IEP” means a written statement developed for a student eligible by law for special education and services.
  • “English Learner” or “EL” student means an individual whose first language is not English and whose test performance may be negatively impacted by lack of English language proficiency.

IV. DISTRICT ASSESSMENT COORDINATOR

The Executive Director of Educational Services shall be named the District Assessment Coordinator. Said person shall be in charge of all test procedures and shall bring recommendations to the school board  annually for approval.

V. GRADUATION CREDIT REQUIREMENTS

  • All students must fulfill graduation assessment requirements as established by MN Statute 120B.30.
  • Students must complete the required Minnesota Academic Standards in language arts, math, science, social studies, the arts, physical education and locally developed standards in health.
  • Four credits of language arts sufficient to satisfy all academic standards in English language arts;
  • Three credits of mathematics, including an algebra II credit or its equivalent, geometry, statistics and probability, or its equivalent, sufficient to satisfy all of the academic standards in mathematics.
  • Students in the graduation class of 2015 and beyond must complete an algebra I credit by the end of 8th grade sufficient to satisfy all of the 8th grade standards in mathematics;
  • Three credits of science, including at least: (a) one credit of biology; (b) one credit of chemistry or physics; and (c) one elective credit of science.
  • Four credits of social studies, encompassing at least United States history, geography, government and citizenship, world history, and economics sufficient to satisfy all of the academic standards in social studies;
  • One credit in the arts sufficient to satisfy all of the state or local academic standards in the arts; and
  • A minimum of seven and one half elective credits.
  • Credit equivalencies
    • A one-half credit of economics taught in a school’s agriculture education or business department may fulfill a one-half credit in social studies under Paragraph E., above, if the credit is sufficient to satisfy all of the academic standards in economics.
    • An agriculture science or career and technical education credit may fulfill the elective science credit required under Paragraph D., above, if the credit meets the state physical science, life science, earth and space science, chemistry, or physics academic standards or a combination of these academic standards as approved by the school district. An agriculture or career and technical education credit may fulfill the credit in chemistry or physics required under Paragraph D., above, if the credit meets the state chemistry or physics academic standards as approved by the school district. A student must satisfy either all of the chemistry or physics academic standards prior to graduation. An agriculture science or career and technical education credit may not fulfill the required biology credit under Paragraph D., above.
    • A career and technical education credit may fulfill a mathematics or arts credit requirement under Paragraph B. or Paragraph F., above.
    • A computer science credit may fulfill a mathematics credit requirement under Paragraph B., above, if the credit meets state academic standards in mathematics.
    • A Project Lead the Way credit may fulfill a mathematics or science credit requirement under Paragraph B. or Paragraph D., above, if the credit meets the state academic standards in mathematics or science.

VI. EARLY GRADUATION

Students may be considered for early graduation, as provided for within Minn. Stat. § 120B.07, upon meeting the following conditions:

  • All course or standards and credit requirements must be met;
  • The principal or designee shall conduct an interview with the student and parent or guardian, familiarize the parties with opportunities available in post-secondary education, and arrive at a timely decision; and
  • The principal’s decision shall be in writing and may be subject to review by the superintendent and school board.

Legal References:

  • Minn. Stat. § 120B.02 (Educational Expectations for Minnesota’s Students)
  • Minn. Stat. § 120B.018 (Definitions)
  • Minn. Stat. § 120B.021 (Required Academic Standards)
  • Minn. Stat. § 120B.023 (Benchmarks)
  • Minn. Stat. § 120B.024 (Graduation Requirements; Course Credits)
  • Minn. Stat. § 120B.07 (Early Graduation)
  • Minn. Stat. § 120B.11 (School District Process)
  • Minn. Stat. § 120B.125 (Planning for Students’ Successful Transition to Postsecondary Education and Employment; Involuntary Career Tracking Prohibited)
  • Minn. Stat. § 120B.30 (Statewide Testing and Reporting System)
  • Minn. Rules Parts 3501.0640-3501.0655 (Academic Standards for Language Arts)
  • Minn. Rules Parts 3501.0700-3501.0745 (Academic Standards for Mathematics)
  • Minn. Rules Parts 3501.0800-3501.0815 (Academic Standards for the Arts)
  • Minn. Rules Parts 3501.0900-3501.0955 (Academic Standards in Science)
  • Minn. Rules Parts 3501.1000-3501.1190 (Graduation-Required Assessment for Diploma) (repealed Minn. L. 2013, Ch. 116, Art. 2, § 22)
  • Minn. Rules Parts 3501.1300-3501.1345 (Academic Standards for Social Studies)
  • Minn. Rules Parts 3501.1400-3501.1410 (Academic Standards for Physical Education)
  • 20 U.S.C. § 6301, et seq. (Every Student Succeeds Act)

Cross References:

  • MSBA/MASA Model Policy 104 (School District Mission Statement)
  • MSBA/MASA Model Policy 601 (School District Curriculum and Instruction Goals)
  • MSBA/MASA Model Policy 614 (School District Testing Plan and Procedure)
  • MSBA/MASA Model Policy 615 (Testing Accommodations, Modifications, and Exemptions for IEPs, Section 504 Plans, and LEP Students)
  • MSBA/MASA Model Policy 616 (School District System Accountability)

Policy Adopted: 07/28/14
Policy Revised: 12/12/16
Policy Updated: 4/10/19

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