Policy Details

6146 Graduation Requirements

# 6146(a)



Graduation from Litchfield High School implies 1) that students have satisfactorily completed the prescribed courses of study for the grade levels and in accordance with their respective abilities; 2) that they have successfully completed the required number and distribution of credits; and 3) have demonstrated mastery based upon competency and performance standards, in accordance with guidelines adopted by the State Board of Education.

The Litchfield Board of Education has determined the minimum number of credits for high school graduation for the class of 2020 and beyond, as indicated herein, shall include the following courses:

English (includes Composition)

4.0 Credits

Social Studies (includes American History, and .5 credit in Civics and American Government)

3.5 Credits

Fine Arts

1.0 Credit


1.0 Credit

Science (includes one credit in Life Science and one credit Physical Science)

3.0 Credits

Math (includes Algebra I, Geometry, and Algebra II or Probability and Statistics)

4.0 Credits

Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM)

1.0 Credit

Physical Education

1.0 Credit

Health and Safety

0.5 Credit

Career and Life Skills (CTE, ESL, Community Service, Personal Finance, Public Speaking, Nutrition and Physical Activity)

2.0 Credits

World Language

2.0 Credit


1.0 Credit


24.0 Credits

Remediation Services

The Board of Education shall provide adequate student support and remedial services for students beginning in grade seven. The support shall provide alternate means for a student to complete any of the high school graduation requirements, or end of the school year examinations described above, if such student is unable to satisfactorily complete any of the required courses or exams. Such student support and remedial services shall include, but not be limited to: (1) allowing students to retake courses in summer school or through an on-line course; (2) allowing students to enroll in a class offered at a constituent unit of the state system of higher education, (3) allowing students who received a failing score, as determined by the Commissioner of Education, on an end of the school year exam to take an alternate form of the exam; and (4) allowing those students whose individualized education program state that such students are eligible for an alternate assessment to demonstrate competency on any of the five core courses through success on such alternate assessment.

Exemption from physical education requirement

Any student who presents a certificate from a physician stating that participation in physical education is medically contraindicated shall be excused from the physical education requirement. The credit for physical education may be fulfilled by an elective approved by the administrator.

Determination of eligible credits

Determination of eligible credits shall be at the discretion of the Board of Education, provided the primary focus of the curriculum of eligible credits corresponds directly to the subject matter of the specified course requirements. The Board of Education may permit a student to graduate during a period of expulsion pursuant to section 10-233d, if the Board determines the student has satisfactorily completed the necessary credits pursuant to this section. The requirements of this section shall apply to any student requiring special education pursuant to section 10-76a, except when the planning and placement team for such student determines the requirement not to be appropriate.

Credit for non-high school courses

Only courses taken in grades nine through twelve, inclusive, shall satisfy this graduation requirement, except that the Board of Education may grant a student credit:

(1)Toward meeting a specified course requirement upon the successful completion in grade seven or eight of any course, the primary focus of which corresponds directly to the subject matter of a specified course requirement in grades nine to twelve, inclusive;

(2) Toward meeting the high school graduation requirement upon the successful completion of a world language course:

(A) in grade six, seven or eight,

(B) through on-line coursework, or

(C) offered privately through a nonprofit provider, provided such student achieves a passing grade on an examination prescribed, within available appropriations, by the Commissioner of Education and such credits do not exceed four;

(3) Toward meeting the high school graduation requirement upon achievement of a passing grade on a subject area proficiency examination identified and approved, within available appropriations, by the Commissioner of Education, regardless of the number of hours the student spent in a public school classroom learning such subject matter;

(4) Toward meeting the high school graduation requirement upon the successful completion of coursework at an institution accredited by the Department of Higher Education or regionally accredited. One three-credit semester course, or its equivalent, at such an institution shall equal one-half credit;

(5) Toward meeting the high school graduation requirement upon the successful completion of on-line coursework. At a minimum;

(A) The workload required by the on-line course is equivalent to that of a similar course taught in a traditional classroom setting,

(B) The content is rigorous and aligned with curriculum guidelines approved by the State Board of Education, where appropriate,

(C) The course engages students and has interactive components, which may include, but are not limited to, required interactions between students and their teachers, participation in on-line demonstrations, discussion boards or virtual labs,

(D) The program of instruction for such on-line coursework is planned, ongoing and systematic, and

(E) The courses are:

(i) Taught by teachers who are certified in the state or another state and have received training on teaching in an on-line environment, or

(ii) Offered by institutions of higher education that are accredited by the Department of Higher Education or regionally accredited; or

(6) Toward meeting the high school graduation requirement upon the successful completion of the board examination series. A three (3) credit college course is equal to .5 high school credit.

Community Service

The Board of Education may offer one-half (.5) credit in community service which, if satisfactorily completed, shall qualify for high school graduation credit, provided such community service is supervised by a certified school administrator or teacher and consists of not less than fifty hours of actual service that may be performed at times when school is not regularly in session and not less than ten hours of related classroom instruction. For purposes of this section, community service does not include partisan political activities. The State Board of Education shall assist local and regional boards of education in meeting these requirements.

Student Success Plans

The Board of Education shall collect information for each student enrolled in a public school, beginning in grade six that records students' career and academic choices in grades six to twelve, inclusive.

Transcripts of students who transfer to Litchfield High School will be assessed by the school counselors and credited toward graduation from Litchfield High School as appropriate, with the final decision for eligibility for graduation being determined by the Principal. For students who transfer out of Litchfield Schools, credit to be awarded based upon work completed at the Litchfield Middle School shall be determined by the receiving school.

The Board of Education recognizes its responsibility to educate all youth in the community as defined by Connecticut General Statutes. This responsibility includes students who drop out of High School. To assist out of school youth, the Board will make available the services of the high school guidance personnel to help them meet requirements for a diploma, e.g., through the G.E.D. (General Educational Development) testing process, adult education, or other alternatives.

Connecticut Seal of Biliteracy

The Board shall affix the "Connecticut State Seal of Biliteracy" to a diploma awarded to a student who has achieved a high level of proficiency in English and one or more foreign languages. "Foreign language" means a world language other than English and includes American Sign Language and any other language spoken by a federally recognized Native American Tribe. The Board shall include on such student's transcript a designation that the student received the "Connecticut Seal of Biliteracy."

(cf. 5121 Examination/Grading/Rating; State Required Testing)
(cf. 5123 Retention)
(cf. 5126 Awards for Achievement)
(cf. Litchfield High School Student Handbook – Graduation Requirements)

Legal Reference: Conn. Gen Stat. § 10-5 State high school diploma: "honors diploma." Payment of fees; exceptions (as amended by PA 17-29).
Conn. Gen. Stat. § 10-5c Academic advancement program.
Conn. Gen. Stat. § 10-14n Mastery examination.
Conn. Gen. Stat. § 10-16(l) Establishment of graduation date.
Conn. Gen. Stat. § 10-221a High school graduation requirements. Student support and remedial services. Excusal from physical education requirement. Diplomas for certain veterans and certain persons assisting in the war effort during World War II. Student success plans.
Conn. Gen. State. § 10-233(a) Definitions.
P.A. 17-42 An Act Concerning Revisions to the High School Graduation Requirements
Mastery-Based Learning-Guidelines for Implementation, Connecticut State Department of Education, June 3, 2015.

Litchfield Board of Education
Policy Adopted: 12/1/1987
Policy Revised: 4/18/2007, 4/30/2008, 5/2/2012, 6/15/2016, 11/15/2017, 1/2/2019

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