Policy Details Page

POLICY 2410 

High School Graduation Requirements:

It is the policy of Tacoma Public Schools that in addition to meeting all graduation requirements set forth by the State of Washington, all District high school students will meet District requirements in order to graduate. The board will award a regular high school diploma to every student enrolled in the district who meets the requirements of graduation established by the district. Only one diploma will be awarded with no distinctions being made between the various programs of instruction which may have been pursued. 
The board will establish minimum graduation requirements which satisfy those established by the State Board of Education and will establish any additional graduation requirements as recommended by the Superintendent and as identified in the Graduation Requirements Bulletin, located in Regulation 2410R, which will be distributed annually for each graduating class detailing all graduation requirements set forth by the State of Washington and a breakdown of the areas in which students must earn credit. Two graduation credit requirements may be waived for individual students who have experienced unusual circumstances. The Superintendent or designee shall include examples of such unusual circumstances in Regulation 2410R. 
In addition to the minimum graduation credit requirements, to earn a diploma each student must: (1) pass all of the required statewide assessments or state approved alternatives1; (2) complete a High School and Beyond Plan; (3) qualify for a Washington Certificate of Academic Achievement or a Certificate of Individual Achievement. 
It is the policy of Tacoma Public Schools to permit students to earn credit to be applied towards high school graduation in all manners acceptable under the laws and regulations of the State of Washington and as identified in Policy No. 2000. A student who qualifies for Special Education services shall satisfy those competency requirements which are incorporated into the Individualized Education Program (IEP). 
A student shall be issued a diploma after completing the district’s requirements for graduation. A student shall also be advised that he/she may receive a final transcript if requested following graduation. The transcript that is used to determine graduation status for a student becomes the final transcript and will not be altered after the student receives his/her diploma. However, a student’s diploma may be withheld until the student pays fines for any school property that has been lost or willfully damaged. Upon payment for damages or the equivalent through voluntary work, the diploma will be released. 
The superintendent is authorized to develop and implement the necessary regulations for the administration of this policy.                                           

Participation in Formal Graduation Ceremonies:

Each student must meet all credit and non-credit graduation requirements in order to participate in formal graduation ceremonies. Principals may allow students who have met all other graduation requirements and who are only in need of state assessment results to participate in formal graduation ceremonies. A diploma is awarded only after all state and district graduation requirements have been fulfilled. 
Any student who (1) has completed four years of high school attendance; (2) is receiving special education or related services under an individualized education program pursuant to state and federal law; and (3) who will continue to receive such services between the ages of eighteen and twenty-one; may participate in formal graduation ceremonies and related activities with his or her peers. 
Participation in formal graduation ceremonies under this section shall not: (1) preclude a student from continuing to receive special education and related services under an individualized education program beyond the graduation ceremony, or (2) be construed as the student’s receipt of either a high school diploma under RCW 28A.230.120 or a certificate of individual achievement under RCW 28A.155.045. 
In the event disciplinary corrective actions are imposed for violations of school rules, a student may be denied participation in graduation ceremonies. A determination that a student will be denied participation in graduation ceremonies for disciplinary purposes can be appealed in the same manner that a short term suspension can be challenged.  In such instances, the diploma will be granted. 
Cross References:

  • Board Policy 3520  Student Fees, Fines, Charges 

Legal References:

  • RCW 28A.230.090(7)  7th & 8th Grade High School Credit  
  • RCW 28A.230.120   Option to Receive Final Transcripts --Notice
  • RCW 28A.600.300-400  Running Start  
  • RCW 28A.635.060  Defacing or Injuring School Property Liability of Parent or Guardian  
  • RCW 28A.200   Home-based Instruction 
  • WAC 180-50    Courses of Studies and Equivalencies  
  • WAC 180-51   High School Graduation Requirements  
  • WAC 180-57  Secondary Education--Standardized High School Transcript
  • WAC 392-169   Running Start 


Adoption Date: 6/10/04 Revised:  2/28/08; 7/23/09; 5/9/14; 6/26/14; 8/20/15 

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