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Developing Colorado's High School Graduation Guidelines

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Background

State statute (section 22-2-106) requires the State Board of Education to adopt a set of guidelines for high school graduation by May 2013. Local school boards may use their own locally developed graduation requirements so long as they “meet or exceed” any minimum standards or core competencies/skills adopted by the State Board. The law outlines several considerations that the State Board must take into account when adopting a set of guidelines, including:

  • Alignment with the description of postsecondary and workforce readiness
  • Alignment with postsecondary academic admission standards
  • Recognition of multiple and diverse pathways to a diploma
  • Articulation through a standards-based education system
  • Attainment of skills necessary to succeed in the 21st century
  • Importance of academic and career planning

Process and Timelines

The Graduation Guidelines Council, a representative group of educators and community members established in statute, has been meeting since June of 2012 to draft and refine guidelines for high school graduation.  State Board of Education adoption occured in May 2013. Districts will have unitl the 2015-16 school year to adopt local high school graduation policies that meet or exceed the state guidelines. Districts will then begin implementation of graduation policies with the seventh grade class of 2015-16 for their graduation in 2021.

We want to hear your thoughts

The Colorado Department of Education is currently meeting with interested constituents to solicit feedback on the development of these graduation guidelines. If you or your group is interested in being part of the conversation, we would like to hear from you.

Please contact Misti Ruthven to inquire about scheduling a meeting or joining our email list.

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