Requirements for graduation at Newton North and Newton South High Schools are set by the Newton School Committee. Currently, to receive a diploma, students must earn a minimum of 100 credits. Credits are assigned to courses depending on the frequency of meeting and preparation required. The norm for major courses, which have four meetings per week (240 minutes) for a full school year, is five credits. Classes meeting four times a week all year are considered majors and those meeting four times a week for a semester or twice a week all year are considered minors.
Students are required to take a minimum of 24 blocks, although juniors and seniors who are committed to extra curricular activities are allowed to enroll in a minimum of 22 blocks. These activities must be supervised by faculty/staff, be connected to the curriculum, and have a definite product or concluding performance. Examples of such activities include interscholastic school sports, school publications, theater (directing, acting or tech crew), science/math teams, Model UN, Mock Trial, speech team, school supervised community service, school supervised tutoring, and summer school. For more information, and/or permission to take 22 blocks, students should see their guidance counselor.
SUBJECTS REQUIRED FOR GRADUATION
The following are subjects required for graduation. In addition to the subjects listed below, students, especially those planning to continue their formal education after high school, are strongly advised to study foreign languages.
- English, 20 credits
- Science, 10 credits (5 in biological science and 5 in physical science)
- History and Social Science, 15 credits (including United States history)
- Mathematics, 10 credits
- Fine, Performing and Technical Arts (Art, Business, Family and Consumer Science, Media Arts, Music, Drama, Speech, Computer Programming, Journalism, and Technical Education), 5 credits (✮ symbol on classes)
- Wellness, 5 credits
In addition to the requirements set by the Newton School Committee, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts requires that students receive passing grades in the English Language Arts, Mathematics, and Science portions of the MCAS tests in order to receive a high school diploma. Students who do not pass the tests have several opportunities to retake the tests. Students earning below Proficient on the English Language Arts and/or Mathematics exams are subject to the regulations of an Educational Proficiency Plan. Please see http://www.doe.mass.edu/ccr/epp/ for further information on this state requirement.