Graduation Requirements

High School Graduation Requirements Set by State Board of Education

The State Board of Education establishes minimum graduation requirements designed to ensure graduates have taken courses in several different subject areas and that should result in students having mastered essential knowledge, skill and competencies. Local boards of education must adopt graduation policies that include at least the state minimum graduation requirements. Local board policy may include additional requirements in accordance with needs and aspirations of students and the communities they serve.

The state minimum high school graduation requirements comprise 24 units of credit that must be earned between grades 9 and 12. The requirements are stated in terms of the number of units of credit that must be earned in each of several subject areas. To earn one unit of credit, a student must meet all the course requirements and earn a passing grade in a course that meets for at least 7,830 minutes a year. Half and quarter-units of credit may be earned for courses meeting proportionately fewer minutes. Following are the requirements by subject area and, in some cases, specific courses, together with interpretative notations.

Graduation Requirements

Required Units:

  4 units of Language Arts
    (9th grade English, 10th grade English, 11th grade English)
  3 units of Social Studies
    (American Government, World Cultures U.S. History, Western Civilization)
  3 units of Science
    (Physical Science, Biology)
  3 units of Mathematics
  1 unit of Fine Arts
    (Art, Music, Drama)
  1 unit of Practical Arts
    (Business, Family and Consumer Sciences Industrial Arts, Vocational/Technical School)
  1 1/2 units of Physical Education and Health
    (1/2 unit Personal Lifetime Fitness, 1/2 unit Health, 1/2 unit elective P.E.
  1/2 Personal Finance*
  16.5 units required
  Elective Units:
    7.5 Elective units required
  Total Units Necessary for Graduation:
    24 units


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