Graduation Requirements

A conceptual illustration of a mountain of paperwork before the goal is reached.
Vanessa Solis/Education Week and iStock
School & District Management Opinion Graduation Must Depend on Learning, Not Time
We’re long overdue to redesign our education system around competency, argue six superintendents. Here’s what that could look like.
Morcease Beasley, Alberto Carvalho, William Hite, Jesus Jara, Monica Goldson & Jerry Almendarez, October 12, 2021
5 min read
Image shows a multi-tailed arrow hitting the bullseye of a target.
DigitalVision Vectors/Getty
Equity & Diversity Opinion When Educational Equity Descends Into Educational Nihilism
Schools need to buckle down to engage and educate kids—not lower (or eliminate) expectations in the name of “equity.”
Rick Hess, September 8, 2021
3 min read
Christine Pappis, a senior at Newark Memorial High School in Newark, Calif., snapped this screenshot during a 5-hour video call during last Saturday night. Pappis said she uses FaceTime to keep in touch with her friends, since they are not only in school closures, but community lockdown; some of her friends tried to hang out and “ended up with a $400 fine.” The students, in order from top to bottom: Natalie Salcedo, Pifolau Denson, Samantha Gutiérrez, Sabrina Liaw, Christian Bowker (bottom left) and Pappis, bottom right.
Christine Pappis, a senior at Newark Memorial High School in Newark, Calif., snapped this screenshot during a 5-hour video call during last Saturday night. Pappis said she uses FaceTime to keep in touch with her friends, since they are not only in school closures, but community lockdown; some of her friends tried to hang out and “ended up with a $400 fine.” The students, in order from top to bottom: Natalie Salcedo, Pifolau Denson, Samantha Gutiérrez, Sabrina Liaw, Christian Bowker (bottom left) and Pappis, bottom right.
Student Well-Being The Lost Senior Year: Credits, Proms, Sports All in Jeopardy
The coronavirus closures are shaping a disruptive end to a tumultuous academic career for the Class of 2020.
Sarah D. Sparks, March 30, 2020
12 min read
Doig Middle School history teacher Ben Huntsinger talks with Valerie Rivera, 12, center, and Jailyn Portillo, 14, right, before the students present a proposal for a new homeless shelter during a city council meeting in Garden Grove, Calif., last week.
Doig Middle School history teacher Ben Huntsinger talks with Valerie Rivera, 12, center, and Jailyn Portillo, 14, right, before the students present a proposal for a new homeless shelter during a city council meeting in Garden Grove, Calif., last week.
Meg Oliphant for Education Week
States 'Action Civics' Enlists Students in Hands-On Democracy
An activist brand of civics instruction is gaining champions and a few critics in the nation's schools.
Catherine Gewertz, March 20, 2019
8 min read
Fremont High School teacher, Maya Brodkey, left, talks with senior Cristy Gonzalez-Hernandez about her senior capstone project during class at the Oakland, Calif., school. The district has had a policy since 2005 requiring students to complete a “serious research project or exhibition” in order to graduate.
Fremont High School teacher, Maya Brodkey, left, talks with senior Cristy Gonzalez-Hernandez about her senior capstone project during class at the Oakland, Calif., school. The district has had a policy since 2005 requiring students to complete a “serious research project or exhibition” in order to graduate.
Ashley Crichton for Education Week
Teaching Can 'Capstone Projects' Deepen Learning for High School Seniors?
Educators in Oakland, Calif., say the yearlong graduation projects are helping students master oral, writing, and research skills that will serve them well for whatever comes next.
Stephen Sawchuk, February 5, 2019
7 min read
College & Workforce Readiness New Jersey Court Strikes Down PARCC Test as Grad Requirement
The state is one of about a dozen that require students to pass a test in order to graduate from high school.
Catherine Gewertz, January 2, 2019
2 min read
College & Workforce Readiness Opinion The Tangled Web: The High School Diploma, College and Career Readiness Standards and Career and Technical Education
Marc Tucker looks at how low bars for college and career readiness standards, career and technical education and high school graduation requirements are leaving U.S. students two and three years behind their peers in top-performing systems.
Marc Tucker, September 6, 2018
10 min read
College & Workforce Readiness High School Diploma Criteria Fall Short, Study Finds
An analysis finds that, in most states, students must exceed high school diploma requirements in order to be admitted to a public, four-year college in their state.
Catherine Gewertz, April 10, 2018
5 min read
College & Workforce Readiness How High School Diploma Requirements Fall Short of College Admission Standards
A new study documents a tricky trap for students: the gap between what high schools require for graduation and what state universities require for admission.
Catherine Gewertz, April 2, 2018
5 min read
College & Workforce Readiness In Wake of Grad-Rate Scandal, D.C. Projects Sharp Decline in Diplomas
In the wake of a major graduation-rate scandal, the District of Columbia school system reports a big anticipated drop in this year's high school graduation rate.
Catherine Gewertz, March 1, 2018
2 min read
College & Workforce Readiness Absenteeism, Abuse of Credit Recovery Drive Bogus Graduations in D.C.
A scathing report on violations of graduation rules in the District of Columbia shines a spotlight on a nationwide problem: Chronic absenteeism.
Catherine Gewertz, February 1, 2018
5 min read
College & Workforce Readiness Opinion Every Students Succeeds: A Strategy, Not a Slogan
While many students in the U.S. are entering school already years behind, Marc Tucker describes how education systems in other countries are providing the support students need to meet high standards from the start.
Marc Tucker, January 18, 2018
11 min read
College & Workforce Readiness Florida Clears Way to Diplomas for Hurricane-Displaced Students
Florida will allow students displaced by Hurricane Maria to earn Puerto Rican diplomas in their newly adopted Florida schools. The decision addresses concerns that students might not be prepared to pass Florida graduation exams.
Catherine Gewertz, January 3, 2018
1 min read
College & Workforce Readiness New Graduation Requirement in New Mexico? College Application or Training
A bill in the New Mexico legislature would add a new high school graduation requirement for students: They'd have to have a plan to go to college or enroll in a training program.
Catherine Gewertz, December 28, 2017
1 min read