††††††† 704 KAR 3:305. Minimum requirements for high school graduation.

 

††††††† RELATES TO: KRS 156.160(1)(a), (d), 158.142, 158.645, 158.6451

††††††† STATUTORY AUTHORITY: KRS 156.070, 156.160(1)(a), (d), 158.142

††††††† NECESSITY, FUNCTION, AND CONFORMITY: KRS 156.160 requires the Kentucky Board of Education to promulgate administrative regulations relating to the courses of study for the different grades and the minimum requirements for high school graduation. KRS 158.142(3)(b) requires the board to promulgate administrative regulations establishing requirements for early graduation from high school. The content standards for the courses of study are established in the Kentucky core academic standards incorporated by reference in 704 KAR 3:303. This administrative regulation establishes the minimum requirements necessary for entitlement to a high school diploma.

 

††††††† Section 1. Definitions. (1) ďEarly graduationĒ means meeting the competency-based criteria outlined in this administrative regulation and doing so in three (3) academic years or less.

††††††† (2) ďEarly Graduation CertificateĒ means a certificate, awarded by the district and signed by the principal and superintendent, that shall make the recipient eligible for a scholarship award equal to one-half (1/2) of the state portion of the average statewide per pupil guaranteed base funding level, to be used at a Kentucky public two (2) year community and technical college or a Kentucky four (4) year public or non-profit independent institution accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

 

††††††† Section 2. Each student in a common school shall have a total of at least twenty-two (22) credits for high school graduation. Those credits shall include the content standards as provided in the Kentucky core academic standards, incorporated by reference in 704 KAR 3:303. Additional standards-based learning experiences shall align to the studentís individual learning plan and shall consist of standards-based content. The required credits and demonstrated competencies shall include the following minimum requirements:

††††††† (1) Language arts - four (4) credits (English I, II, III, and IV) to include the content contained in the Kentucky core academic standards for English and language arts and comply with the following:

††††††† (a) Language arts shall be taken each year of high school; and

††††††† (b) If a student does not meet the college readiness benchmarks for English and language arts as established by the Council on Postsecondary Education in 13 KAR 2:020, the student shall take an English and language arts transitional course or intervention, which is monitored to address remediation needs, before exiting high school;

††††††† (2) Social studies - three (3) credits to include the content contained in the Kentucky core academic standards for social studies;

††††††† (3) Mathematics - three (3) credits to include the content contained in the Kentucky core academic standards for mathematics and include the following minimum requirements:

††††††† (a) Algebra I, Geometry, and Algebra II. An integrated, applied, interdisciplinary, occupational, or technical course that prepares a student for a career path based on the student's individual learning plan may be substituted for a traditional Algebra I, Geometry, or Algebra II course on an individual student basis if the course meets the content standards in the Kentucky core academic standards, incorporated by reference in 704 KAR 3:303;

††††††† (b) A mathematics course or its equivalent as determined by the district shall be taken each year of high school to ensure readiness for postsecondary education or the workforce;

††††††† (c) Any mathematics course other than Algebra I, Geometry, or Algebra II shall be counted as an elective; and

††††††† (d) If a student does not meet the college readiness benchmarks for mathematics as established by the Council on Postsecondary Education in 13 KAR 2:020, the student shall take a mathematics transitional course or intervention, which is monitored to address remediation needs, before exiting high school;

††††††† (4) Science - three (3) credits that shall incorporate lab-based scientific investigation experiences and include the content contained in the Kentucky core academic standards for science;

††††††† (5) Health - one-half (1/2) credit to include the content contained in the Kentucky core academic standards for health;

††††††† (6) Physical education - one-half (1/2) credit to include the content contained in the Kentucky core academic standards for physical education;

††††††† (7) History and appreciation of visual and performing arts (or another arts course which incorporates this content) - one (1) credit to include the content contained in the Kentucky core academic standards for arts and humanities or a standards-based specialized arts course based on the studentís individual learning plan;

††††††† (8) Academic and career interest standards-based learning experiences - seven (7) credits including four (4) standards-based learning experiences in an academic or career interest based on the studentís individual learning plan; and

††††††† (9) Demonstrated performance-based competency in technology.

 

††††††† Section 3. (1) A local board of education may substitute an integrated, applied, interdisciplinary, occupational, technical, or higher level course for a required course if the alternative course provides rigorous content and addresses the same applicable components of 703 KAR 4:060.

††††††† (2) For students with disabilities, a local board of education may substitute a functional, integrated, applied, interdisciplinary, occupational, technical, or higher level course for a required course if the alternative course provides rigorous content and addresses the same applicable components of 703 KAR 4:060. These shall be based on grade-level content standards and may be modified to allow for a narrower breadth, depth, or complexity of the general grade-level content standards.

 

††††††† Section 4. (1) A district shall implement an advising and guidance process throughout the middle and high schools to provide support for the development and implementation of an individual learning plan for each student. The plan shall include career development and awareness and specifically address Vocational Studies Academic Expectations 2.36-2.38 as established in Academic expectations, 703 KAR 4:060.

††††††† (2) A district shall develop a method to evaluate the effectiveness and results of the individual learning plan process. The evaluation method shall include input from students, parents, and school staff. As part of the evaluation criteria, the district shall include indicators related to the status of the student in the twelve (12) months following the date of graduation.

††††††† (3) A feeder middle school and a high school shall work cooperatively to ensure that each student and parent receives information and advising regarding the relationship between education and career opportunities. Advising and guidance shall include information about financial planning for postsecondary education.

††††††† (4) A school shall maintain each studentís individual learning plan. The individual learning plan shall be readily available to the student and parent and reviewed and approved at least annually by the student, parents, and school officials.

††††††† (5) Beginning with a studentís eighth grade year, the individual learning plan shall set learning goals for the student based on academic and career interests and shall identify required academic courses, electives, and extracurricular opportunities aligned to the studentís postsecondary goals. The school shall use information from the individual learning plans about student needs for academic and elective courses to plan academic and elective offerings.

††††††† (6) Beginning with the graduating class of 2013, the development of the individual learning plan for each student shall begin by the end of the sixth grade year and shall be focused on career exploration and related postsecondary education and training needs.

 

††††††† Section 5. (1) A board of education may award credit toward high school graduation for satisfactory demonstration of learning based on content standards described in the Kentucky core academic standards, incorporated by reference in 704 KAR 3:303, and a rigorous performance standards policy established by the board of education. A school shall establish performance descriptors and evaluation procedures to determine if the content and performance standards have been met.

††††††† (2) A board of education shall award credit toward high school graduation based on:

††††††† (a) A standards-based Carnegie unit credit that shall consist of at least 120 hours of instructional time in one (1) subject; or

††††††† (b) A standards-based performance-based credit, regardless of the number of instructional hours in one (1) subject.

††††††† (3) A local board of education which has chosen to award standards-based performance-based credit shall award a standards-based credit earned by a student enrolled in grade 5, 6, 7, or 8 if:

††††††† (a) The content of the course is the same that is established in the Kentucky core academic standards, incorporated by reference in 704 KAR 3:303; and

††††††† (b) The district has criteria in place to make a reasonable determination that the middle level student is capable of success in the high school course.

††††††† (4) A board of education which has chosen to award standards-based performance-based credit shall establish a policy for a performance-based credit system that includes:

††††††† (a) The procedures for developing performance-based credit systems and for amending the system;

††††††† (b) The conditions under which each high school may grant performance-based credits and the related performance descriptors and assessments;

††††††† (c) Objective grading and reporting procedures;

††††††† (d) Content standards as addressed in 704 KAR 3:303, Required core academic standards, and 703 KAR 4:060, Academic expectations;

††††††† (e) The extent to which state-provided assessments will be used in the local performance-based credit system;

††††††† (f) The ability for students to demonstrate proficiency and earn credit for learning acquired outside of school or in prior learning; and

††††††† (g) Criteria to ensure that internships, cooperative learning experiences, and other learning experiences in the school and community are:

††††††† 1. Designed to further student progress towards the individual learning plan;

††††††† 2. Supervised by qualified instructors; and

††††††† 3. Aligned with state and local content and performance standards.

††††††† (5) A board of education may award standards-based, performance-based credit toward high school graduation for:

††††††† (a) Standards-based course work that constitutes satisfactory demonstration of learning in any high school course, consistent with Section 1 of this administrative regulation;

††††††† (b) Standards-based course work that constitutes satisfactory demonstration of learning in a course for which the student failed to earn credit when the course was taken previously;

††††††† (c) Standards-based portfolios, senior year, or capstone projects;

††††††† (d) Standards-based online or other technology mediated courses;

††††††† (e) Standards-based dual credit or other equivalency courses; or

††††††† (f) Standards-based internship, cooperative learning experience, or other supervised experience in the school or the community.

††††††† (6) Each local board of education shall maintain a copy of its policy on high school graduation requirements. This policy shall include a description of how the requirements address KRS 158.6451(1)(b) and 703 KAR 4:060.

 

††††††† Section 6. (1) A student who satisfactorily completes the requirements of this administrative regulation and additional requirements as may be imposed by a local board of education or meets the requirements for early graduation as outlined in Section 9 of this administrative regulation shall be awarded a graduation diploma.

††††††† (2) The local board of education shall award the diploma.

 

††††††† Section 7. This administrative regulation shall not be interpreted as prohibiting a local governing board, superintendent, principal, or teacher from awarding special recognition to a student.

 

††††††† Section 8. Beginning with the graduating class of 2013, if the severity of an exceptional studentís disability precludes a course of study that meets the high school graduation requirements established in Section 1 of this administrative regulation leading to receipt of a high school diploma, an alternative course of study shall be offered. (1) This course of study shall be based upon student needs and the provisions specified in 704 KAR 3:303, Required core academic standards, and shall be reviewed at least annually.

††††††† (2) A student who completes this course of study shall receive an alternative high school diploma to be awarded by the local board of education consistent with the graduation practices for all students.

††††††† (3) A local board of education may establish policies to award an alternative high school diploma to a former student who has received a certificate or certificate of attainment.

 

††††††† Section 9. (1) Beginning in the 2014 - 2015 academic year, only students who meet the criteria outlined in this section shall be eligible for early graduation. Those students who meet the criteria for early graduation shall receive from the school district a diploma and an Early Graduation Certificate. Students wishing to graduate early shall indicate that intent to the school principal at the beginning of grade 9 or as soon as the intent is known, but within the first thirty (30) school days of the academic year in which they wish to graduate.

††††††† (a) A studentís intent to graduate early shall be entered into the student information system by the school district by October 1 of the year in which the student makes the declaration.

††††††† (b) Students working toward early graduation and receipt of a corresponding Early Graduation Certificate shall be supported by development and monitoring of an individual learning plan to support their efforts.

††††††† (2) To graduate early and earn an Early Graduation Certificate, a student shall:

††††††† (a) Score proficient on the end of course exams required by the Kentucky Board of Education in 703 KAR 5:200; and

††††††† (b) Meet the college readiness exam benchmarks as set by the Council on Postsecondary Education in 13 KAR 2:020 for placement in credit-bearing courses without the need for remediation.

††††††† (3) A student who has indicated an intent to graduate early may participate in the studentís state administration of the college readiness exam prior to the junior year, if needed. (5 Ky.R. 633; Am. 6 Ky.R. 53; eff. 7-17-1979; 6 Ky.R. 238; 526; eff. 4-1-1980; 9 Ky.R. 1027; 1208; eff. 8-3-1983; 11 Ky.R. 1076; eff. 3-12-1985; 17 Ky.R. 113; eff. 9-13-1990; 23 Ky.R. 3419; 3827; 24 Ky.R. 82; eff. 7-2-1997; 32 Ky.R. 1779; 2028; 33 Ky.R. 766; eff. 10-6-2006; 37 Ky.R. 138; 1644; eff. 2-4-2011; 39 Ky.R. 612; 1115; eff. 1-4-2013; 40 Ky.R. 1138; 1406; eff. 3-7-2014.)