Main content

Alert message

STUDENT GRADUATION

A student may graduate and receive a diploma only if the student successfully completes:

  1. The curriculum requirements identified by the State Board of Education and has performed satisfactorily on state-required assessments [see EKB];  or
  2. An individualized education program (IEP) developed under Education Code 29.005.  [see EHBAB]

Education Code 28.025(a); 19 TAC 101.3022

POSTHUMOUS DIPLOMA

Beginning with students enrolled in grade 12 during the 2005-06 school year, and on request of the student’s parent, TSBVI shall issue a high school diploma posthumously to a student who died while enrolled at grade level 12, provided that the student was academically on track at the time of death to receive a diploma at the end of the school year in which the student died.  “School year” includes any summer session following the spring semester.

Exception

The School is not required to issue a posthumous diploma if the student was convicted of a felony offense under Title 5 or 6, Penal Code, or adjudicated as having engaged in conduct constituting a felony offense under Title 5 or 6, Penal Code.
Education Code 8.0254

DIPLOMA/TRANSCRIPT/CERTIFICATE OF COURSEWORK COMPLETION

Graduates of each high school are awarded the same type of diploma. The academic achievement record or transcript, rather than the diploma, records individual accomplishments, achievements, and courses completed and displays appropriate graduation seals.  19 TAC 74.51(a), .61(a)  [See EI for provisions regarding certificate of coursework completion]

Special Education

A TSBVI student who successfully completes the requirements of his or her IEP, including performance on a state assessment required for graduation, shall receive a high school diploma.  A student’s admission, review, and dismissal (ARD) committee shall determine if the student will be required to meet satisfactory performance on an assessment for purposes of graduation.  19 TAC 101.3023.(a)

PERSONAL GRADUATION PLAN (PGP)

A principal shall designate a guidance counselor, teacher, or other appropriate individual to develop and administer a personal graduation plan (PGP) for each student enrolled in a junior high, middle, or high school who:

  1. Does not perform satisfactorily on a state assessment instrument; or
  2. Is not likely to receive a high school diploma before the fifth school year following the student’s enrollment in grade level 9, as determined by a district.

A PGP must:

  1. Identify educational goals for the student
  2. Include diagnostic information, appropriate monitoring and intervention, and other evaluation strategies;
  3. Include an intensive instruction program described in Education Code 28.0213 [see EHBC];
  4. Address participation of the student’s parent or guardian, including consideration of the parent’s or guardian’s educational expectations for the student; and
  5. Provide innovative methods to promote the student’s advancement, including flexible scheduling, alternative learning environments, online instruction, and other interventions that are proven to accelerate the learning process and have been scientifically validated to improve learning and cognitive ability.

In addition, a district is encouraged to establish for each student entering grade 9 a PGP that identifies a course of study that:

  1. Promotes college and workforce readiness;
  2. Promotes career placement and advancement; and
  3. Facilitates the student’s transition from secondary to postsecondary education.

Education Code 28.0212

Students Receiving Special Education Services

For TSBVI students, the student’s ARD committee and the district are responsible for developing the student’s PGP.

A student’s IEP developed under Education Code 29.005 will be used as the student’s PGP.

Education Code 28.0212(c); 19 TAC 89.1050(a)  [See EHBAB]

EARLY GRADUATION

A parent of a TSBVI student is entitled to request, with the expectation that the request will not be unreasonably denied, that the parent's child be permitted to graduate from high school earlier than the child would normally graduate, if the child completes each course required for graduation.    The decision of a board concerning the request is final and may not be appealed.  Education Code 26.003(a)(3)(C), 26.003(b)  [See FMH, FNG]

STATE GRADUATION REQUIREMENTS

All credit for graduation must be earned no later than grade 12.  19 TAC 74.51(b), .61(b), .71(b)

Note:        For current state graduation requirements, including those for students who entered grade 9 before the 2004–05 school year but that are not otherwise referenced in this policy, see Education Code 28.025 and http://info.sos.state.tx.us/pls/pub/readtac$ext.ViewTAC?tac_view=4&ti=19&pt=2&ch=74.

Minimum High School Program

TSBVI shall ensure that each student enrolls in the courses necessary to complete the Recommended or Advanced/Distinguished Achievement High School Program unless the student, the student’s parent or other person standing in parental relation to the student, and a school counselor or school administrator agree in writing signed by each party that the student should be permitted to take courses under the Minimum High School Program and the student:

  1. Is at least 16 years of age;
  2. Has completed two credits required for graduation in each subject of the foundation curriculum under Education Code 28.002(a)(1); or
  3. Has failed to be promoted to the tenth grade one or more times as determined by the school district.

A student agreeing to take courses under the Minimum High School Program may, upon request, resume taking courses under the Recommended High School Program.

Students with Disabilities

If an ARD committee makes decisions that place a student with a disability on a modified curriculum in a subject area, the student will be automatically placed in the Minimum High School Program.

Notice

Before a student’s parent or other person standing in parental relation to the student may agree that the student be permitted to take courses under the Minimum High School Program, a district must provide the written notice developed by TEA to the parent or person standing in parental relation explaining the benefits of the Recommended High School Program.

Applicability

A student who was permitted to take courses under the Minimum High School Program prior to the 2009–10 school year may remain in the Minimum High School Program.

Education Code 28.025(b), (b-6), (b-8); 19 TAC 74.51(d), .52–.54, .61(c)–(e), .62–.64, .71(c), (d)

Requirements

A student must earn at least 22 credits to complete the Minimum High School Program.  A student who entered grade 9 in the 2004–05, 2005–06, or 2006–07 school year must demonstrate proficiency in the program requirements listed at 19 Administrative Code 74.52.  A student who entered grade 9 in the 2007–08, 2008–09, 2009–10, 2010–11, or 2011–12 school year must demonstrate proficiency in the program requirements listed at 19 Administrative Code 74.62.  A student who entered grade 9 in the 2012–13 school year or thereafter must demonstrate proficiency in the program requirements listed at 19 Administrative Code 74.72.  19 TAC 74.52, .62, .72

Recommended High School Program

A student who entered grade 9 in the 2004–05, 2005–06, or 2006–07 school year must earn at least 24 credits to complete the Recommended High School Program.  A student must demonstrate proficiency in the program requirements listed at 19 Administrative Code 74.53.

A student who entered grade 9 in the 2007–08, 2008–09, 2009–10, 2010–11, or 2011–12 school year must earn at least 26 credits to complete the Recommended High School Program.  A student must demonstrate proficiency in the program requirements listed at 19 Administrative Code 74.63.

A student who entered grade 9 in the 2012–13 school year or thereafter must earn at least 26 credits to complete the Recommended High School Program.  A student must demonstrate proficiency in the program requirements listed at 19 Administrative Code 74.73.

Education Code 28.025; 19 TAC 74.53, .63, .73

Advanced/Distinguished Achievement High School Program

A student who entered grade 9 in the 2004–05, 2005–06, or 2006–07 school year must earn at least 24 credits to complete the Advanced/Distinguished Achievement High School Program.  A student must demonstrate proficiency in the program requirements listed at 19 Administrative Code 74.54.

A student who entered grade 9 in the 2007–08, 2008–09, 2009–10, 2010–11, or 2011–12 school year must earn at least 26 credits to complete the Advanced/Distinguished Achievement High School Program.  A student must demonstrate proficiency in the program requirements listed at 19 Administrative Code 74.64.

A student who entered grade 9 in the 2012–13 school year or thereafter must earn at least 26 credits to complete the Advanced/Distinguished Achievement High School Program.  A student must demonstrate proficiency in the program requirements listed at 19 Administrative Code 74.74.

Education Code 28.025, 19 TAC 74.54, .64, .74

Curriculum May Not Vary

TSBVI may not vary the curriculum for a course in the required curriculum based on whether a student is enrolled in the Minimum, Recognized, or Advanced/Distinguished Achievement High School Program.  Education Code 28.004(q)

SUBSTITUTIONS

No substitutions are allowed for high school graduation requirements in the Recommended and Advanced/Distinguished Achievement High School Programs, except as provided by State Board rule. 19 TAC 74.53(d), 74.54(e), .63(d), .64(e), .73(d), .74(e)

AP Or IB Courses

College Board Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate courses may be substituted for required courses in appropriate areas. These courses may be used as electives in all three high school graduation programs. 19 74.51(h), .61(k), .71(i)

Reading

The School may offer a maximum of 3 credits of reading for state graduation elective credit for identified students if the School:

  1. Adopts policies to identify students in need of additional reading instruction;
  2. Has procedures that include assessment of individual student needs and ongoing evaluation of each student's progress; and
  3. Monitors instructional activities to ensure that student needs are addressed.

Reading credits may be selected from Reading I, II, or III.
19 TAC 74.51(e), .61(e), .71(f)

College Courses

A student may comply with the curriculum requirements under the Minimum, Recommended, or Advanced/Distinguished Achievement High School Program for each subject of the foundation curriculum and for languages other than English by successfully completing appropriate courses in the core curriculum of an institution of higher education.  Education Code 28.002(b-7); 19 TAC 74.51(i), .61(l), .71(j)

Physical Education Substitutions

Other Physical Activity

In accordance with local district policy, up to one credit for any one of the physical education courses listed in 19 Administrative Code Chapter 74 [see EHAC] may be earned through participation in any of the following activities:

  1. Drill team;
  2. Marching band; and
  3. Cheerleading.

In accordance with local district policy, credit for any physical education course may be earned through participation in the following activities:

  1. Athletics
  2. JROTC; and
  3. Appropriate private or commercially sponsored physical activity programs conducted on or off campus.  A district must apply to the Commissioner for approval of such programs, which may be substituted for state graduation credit in physical education.  Such approval may be granted under the following conditions:
    1. Olympic-level participation and/or competition includes a minimum of 15 hours per week of highly intensive, professional, supervised training.  The training facility, instructors, and the activities involved in the program must be certified by the superintendent to be of exceptional quality.  Students qualifying and participating at this level may be dismissed from school one hour per day.  Students dismissed may not miss any class other than physical education.
    2. Private or commercially sponsored physical activities include those certified by the superintendent to be of high quality and well supervised by appropriately trained instructors.  Student participation of at least five hours per week must be required.  Students certified to participate at this level may not be dismissed from any part of the regular school day.

Restrictions

All substitution activities must include at least 100 minutes per five-day school week of moderate to vigorous physical activity.

No more than four substitution credits may be earned through any combination of substitutions listed above.

Student With A Disability Or Illness

A student who is unable to participate in physical activity due to disability or illness may substitute an academic elective credit in English language arts, mathematics, science, or social studies for the required physical education credit.  A credit allowed to be substituted may not also be used by the student to satisfy a graduation requirement other than completion of the physical education credit.  The determination regarding a student’s ability to participate in physical activity must be made by:

  1. The student’s ARD committee if the student receives special education services under Education Code Chapter 29, Subchapter A;
  2. The committee established for the student under Section 504, Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. Section 794) if the student does not receive special education services under Education Code Chapter 29, Subchapter A but is covered by the Rehabilitation Act of 1973; or
  3. A committee, established by the district, of persons with appropriate knowledge regarding the student if each of the committees described above is inapplicable.  This committee must follow the same procedures required of an ARD or a Section 504 committee.

Student With Physical Limitations

If a student entering grade 9 during the 2007–08 school year or thereafter is unable to comply with all of the requirements for a physical education course due to a physical limitation certified by a licensed medical practitioner, a modification to a physical education course does not prohibit the student from earning a Recommended or Advanced/Distinguished High School Program diploma.  A student with a physical limitation must still demonstrate proficiency in the relevant knowledge and skills in a physical education course that do not require physical activity.

Education Code 28.025(b-10)–(b-11); 19 TAC 74.52(b)(7), .53(b)(7), .54(b)(7), .62(b)(7), .63(b)(7), .64(b)(7), .72(b)(6), .73(b)(6), .74(b)(6)

Transfers From Out-Of-State Or Nonpublic Schools

Out-of-state or out-of-country transfer students (including foreign exchange students) and transfer students from Texas nonpublic schools are eligible to receive Texas diplomas but shall complete all high school graduation requirements. Any course credits required for graduation that are not completed before enrollment at the School may be satisfied by credit by examination, correspondence courses, distance learning, or completing the course, according to the provisions of 19 TAC 74.26.  19 TAC 74.51(f), .61(f), .71(g)  [See EHDB, EHDC, EHDE, and EI]

PREREQUISITES

A student may not be enrolled in a course that has a required prerequisite unless:

  1. The student has completed the prerequisite course(s);
  2. The student has demonstrated equivalent knowledge as determined by the district; or
  3. The student was already enrolled in the course in an out-of-state, an out-of-country, or a Texas nonpublic school and transferred to a Texas public school prior to successfully completing the course.

TSBVI may award credit for a course a student completed without having met the prerequisites if the student completed the course in an out-of-state, an out-of-country, or a Texas nonpublic school where there was not a prerequisite.

19 TAC 74.71(k), (l)

PRIOR COURSES

High school courses successfully completed prior to grade 9 and the 2007–08 school year shall count toward graduation in the manner established in 19 Administrative Code Chapter 74 for credit in the year the course is successfully completed.

Science and physical education graduation requirements successfully completed prior to the 2010–11 school year shall count toward graduation in the manner established at the time the credit was earned.
Physical education graduation requirements successfully completed through a two- or three-credit career and technical education work-based training course prior to the 2011–12 school year shall count toward graduation.

19 TAC 74.61(f), (m)

GRADUATION OF SPECIAL EDUCATION STUDENTS

A student receiving special education services may graduate and be awarded a regular high school diploma if the student meets one of the following conditions:

Completion of General Education Requirements

  1. The student has satisfactorily completed the state’s or TSBVI’s (whichever is greater) required standards in 19 Administrative Code Chapters 110–128 and Chapter 130 and credit requirements applicable to students in general education for graduation under the Recommend or Advanced/Distinguished Achievement Programs, including satisfactory performance as established in Education Code Chapter 39, on the required state assessments.
  2. The student has satisfactorily completed the state’s or TSBVI’s (whichever is greater) required standards in 19 Administrative Code Chapters 110–128 and Chapter 130 and credit requirements applicable to students in general education for graduation under the Minimum High School Program, including participation in state assessments.  The student’s ARD committee shall determine whether satisfactory performance on the required state assessments is necessary for graduation.

Completion of IEP

  1.   The student has satisfactorily completed the state’s or district’s (whichever is greater) required standards in 19 Administrative Code Chapters 110–128 and Chapter 130 through courses, one or more of which contain modified content that is aligned to the standards required under the Minimum High School Program as well as the credit requirements under the Minimum High School Program, including participation in required state assessments.  The student’s ARD committee shall determine whether satisfactory performance on the required state assessments is necessary for graduation.  The student must also successfully complete the student’s IEP and meet one of the following conditions, consistent with the IEP:
    1. Full-time employment, based on the student's abilities and local employment opportunities, in addition to sufficient self-help skills to enable the student to maintain the employment without direct and ongoing educational support of the School;
    2. Demonstrated mastery of specific employability skills and self-help skills that do not require direct ongoing educational support of the School; or
    3. Access to services which are not within the legal responsibility of public education, or employment or educational options for which the student has been prepared by the academic program.

Employability and self-help skills are those skills directly related to the preparation of students for employment, including general skills necessary to obtain or retain employment.

The ARD committee shall determine needed educational services upon the request of the student or parent to resume services, as long as the student meets the age eligibility requirements.

Aging Out

The student no longer meets age eligibility requirements and has completed the requirements specified in the IEP.

19 TAC 89.1070(b), (e)-(f)

Evaluation

Special education students graduating under the above provisions shall be provided with a summary of academic achievement and functional performance as described at 34 C.F.R. 300.305(e)(3).  The summary shall consider, as appropriate, the views of the parent and student and written recommendations from adult service agencies on how to assist the student in meeting postsecondary goals.  If the student is graduating based on completion of his or her IEP, the evaluation under 34 C.F.R. 300.305(e) shall be included as part of the summary.  Students who participate in graduation ceremonies but who are not graduating under 19 Administrative Code 89.1070(b)(3) and who will remain in school to complete their education do not have to be evaluated.  19 TAC 89.1070(c)–(d)

Adopted:          1/11/80
Amended:         1/6/81, 11/13/81, 11/11/83, 9/21/84, 7/12/85, 5/30/86, 1/14/88, 6/1/89, 9/22/89, 5/30/91, 9/27/91, 1/29/93, 11/15/96, 1/30/04, 1/26/07, 11/16/07, 9/20/13
Reviewed:        5/25/05