DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

Office of the Secretary

Statutory Authority: 14 Delaware Code, Section 122(d) (14 Del.C. §122(d))

14 DE Admin. Code 505

FINAL

REGULATORY IMPLEMENTING ORDER

505 High School Graduation Requirements and Diplomas

I. Summary of the Evidence and Information Submitted

The Secretary of Education seeks the consent of the State Board of Education to amend 14 DE Admin. Code 505 High School Graduation Requirements and Diplomas. The amendments reflect the recommendations from the report of the High School Graduation Requirements Committee. The Committee was formed under the auspices of the P-20 Council following an analysis of Delaware’s graduation requirements by Achieve, Inc., a national educational nonprofit organization created by the nation’s governors and business leaders. Achieve, Inc. has conducted research indicating that high school students across the country are not being adequately prepared for success in college and in the workforce.

The amendments include increasing the requirement of three (3) credits in mathematics to four (4) credits beginning with the graduating class of 2011 and requiring each student to have an Individualized Learning Plan (ILP). The Computer Literacy requirement will be removed from the high school requirements for the graduation class of 2011 and will become a component of the middle school curriculum. Beginning with the class of 2013 two (2) credits in a world language will be required for graduation.

Notice of the proposed regulation was published in the News Journal and the Delaware State News on June 21, 2006, in the form hereto attached as Exhibit “A”. Comments were received from the Governor’s Advisory Council for Exceptional Citizens, the State Council for Persons with Disabilities, the Delaware Developmental Disabilities Council, the Delaware Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages, the International Council of Delaware, the Delaware Mathematics Coalition members, the Delaware State Education Association and the Metropolitan Wilmington Urban League.

The Governor’s Advisory Council for Exceptional Citizens, the State Council for Persons with Disabilities and the Delaware Developmental Disabilities Council expressed support for the Individualized Learning Plans but had concerns about other things such as:

The lack of involvement of persons representing students with disabilities on the study committee;

The Department’s response is that the State Board chose to not include every specific interest group in order to keep the Committee at a reasonable size. However, midway through the committee process, the Council was invited to participate in a focus group on the issue of increased rigor for graduation. Copies of the focus group comments were shared with the committee and are attached to the final report.

The increased dropout rates for students with disabilities;

The Department’s position is that research indicates that dropouts are not a reaction to increased rigor in curricula but due to a variety of other factors. It was in light of those findings that we are expanding the use of the ILPs and that other high school reform initiatives are being put in place across the State.

The difficulties that students with disabilities will have in completing two years of a world language and the lack of a definition of world language which should include American Sign Language;

The Department will be forming a committee to define World Language in the context of this regulation and the concerns will be included when the issue is discussed. The committee will certainly consider the inclusion of American Sign Language as part of the definition.

The Delaware Council on the Teaching of Foreign Language supported the world language requirements and offered to help with implementation issues as did the International Council of Delaware.

The Delaware Mathematics Coalition supported the increased rigor in math and offered its help with implementation issues.

The Delaware State Education Association and the Metropolitan Wilmington Urban League generally supported the increased requirements and rigor. They did express concern about the implementation with regards to resources for both funding and personnel. The Department and the State Board of Education also recognizes these concerns and they are committed to solving the issues surrounding funding and personnel.

II. Findings of Facts

The Secretary finds that it is appropriate to amend 14 DE Admin. Code 505 High School Graduation Requirements and Diplomas in order to increase the graduation requirement of three (3) credits in mathematics to four (4) credits beginning with the graduating class of 2011, to require each student to have an Individualized Learning Plan (ILP) and to remove the Computer Literacy requirement from the high school requirements for the graduation class of 2011. The Computer Literacy requirement will become a component of the middle school curriculum.

In addition, beginning with the class of 2013 the amendments require two (2) credits in a world language for graduation.

III. Decision to Amend the Regulation

For the foregoing reasons, the Secretary concludes that it is appropriate to amend 14 DE Admin. Code 505. Therefore, pursuant to 14 Del.C. §122, 14 DE Admin. Code 505 attached hereto as Exhibit “B” is hereby amended. Pursuant to the provision of 14 Del.C. §122(e), 14 DE Admin. Code 505 hereby amended shall be in effect for a period of five years from the effective date of this order as set forth in Section V. below.

IV. Text and Citation

The text of 14 DE Admin. Code 505 amended hereby shall be in the form attached hereto as Exhibit “B”, and said regulation shall be cited as 14 DE Admin. Code 505 in the Administrative Code of Regulations for the Department of Education.

V. Effective Date of Order

The actions hereinabove referred to were taken by the Secretary pursuant to 14 Del.C. §122 on August 17, 2006. The effective date of this Order shall be ten (10) days from the date this Order is published in the Delaware Register of Regulations.

IT IS SO ORDERED the 17th day of August 2006.

Department of Education

Valerie A. Woodruff, Secretary of Education

Approved this 17th day of August 2006

State Board of Education

Jean W. Allen, President

Richard M. Farmer, Jr., Vice President

Mary B. Graham, Esquire

Gregory A. Hastings

Barbara B. Rutt

Dennis J. Savage

Dr. Claiborne Smith

505 High School Graduation Requirements and Diplomas

1.0 Credit Requirements

1.1 No public school student shall be granted a State of Delaware Diploma unless such student shall have successfully completed a minimum of twenty two credits in order to graduate including: 4 credits in English Language Arts, 3 credits in mathematics, 3 credits in science, 3 credits in social studies, 1 credit in physical education, 1/2 credit in health, 1 credit in computer literacy, 3 credits in a career pathway, and 3 1/2 credits in elective courses.

1.2 Definitions:

“Career Pathway” means a planned program of sequenced or specialized courses designed to develop knowledge and skills in a particular career or academic area.

“Credit” means a minimum of 135 hours of actual classroom instruction or a demonstration of competency.

“Credit for Computer Literacy” means credit granted toward graduation at any point when the student can demonstrate competency in the required skill areas either through an integrated approach, a specific course, or a demonstration of accumulated knowledge over the student’s educational career.

1.3 Local school boards and charter schools charter school boards may establish requirements over and above the minimum number of credits required by the State Department of Education.

1.0 Definitions:

"Career Pathway" means a planned program of at least 3 credits in sequenced or specialized courses designed to develop knowledge and skills in a particular career or academic area.

"Credit" means the acquisition of skills and knowledge at a satisfactory level as determined by the district and charter school boards through 135 hours (a Carnegie Unit) of actual classroom instruction or through locally approved options contained in Section 8.0.

"Credit for Computer Literacy" means credit granted toward graduation at any point when the student can demonstrate competency in the required skill areas either through an integrated approach, a specific course, or a demonstration of accumulated knowledge over the student's educational career.

"Department" means the Delaware Department of Education.

"English Language Arts" means those components of reading, writing and oral communication that are included in the State Content Standards for high school English Language Arts as required in 14 DE Admin. Code 501.

"Health Education" means those components that are included in the State Content Standards for high school health education as required in 14 DE Admin. Code 501.

"High School" means grades 9 through 12.

"Individual Learning Plan (ILP)" means a plan for a student to reach the goal of high school graduation inclusive of at least one year of post high school activity. This plan also serves as a guide for the student's choice of courses including any support services necessary for the student to graduate from high school.

"Instructional Support Team" means those educators, counselors and specialists or other personnel whose responsibility it is to monitor student progress in consultation with students and their parent(s), guardian(s) or Relative Caregiver and to recommend and arrange support services.

"Mathematics" means those components of number sense, algebra, geometry, statistics and probability combined with problem solving, reasoning, communicating, and making connections that are included in the State Content Standards for high school mathematics as required in 14 DE Admin. Code 501 either through integrated courses or in courses titles such as Algebra I, Algebra II, Geometry, Trigonometry. Pre-Calculus, Calculus, Discrete Mathematics, Statistics, and Probability.

"Physical Education" means those components that are included in the State Content Standards for high school physical education as required in 14 DE Admin. Code 501.

"Science" means those components of the nature of science which include inquiry, materials and their properties, energy and its effects, Earth in space, Earth's dynamic systems, life processes, diversity and continuity of living things, and ecology that are included in the State Content Standards for high school science as required in 14 DE Admin. Code 501 either through integrated courses or in course titles such as Earth Science, Biology and Chemistry-Physics.

"Social Studies" means those components of civics, economics, geography, and history that are included the State Content Standards for high school social studies as required in 14 DE Admin. Code 501 either through integrated courses or in course titles such as United States History, World History, Geography, Economics, and Civics.

"Support Services" means those academic interventions such as tutoring; extra time before school, in school, or after school; summer school, a fifth year of high school or any other strategy to provide student academic assistance.

"World Languages" RESERVED

2.0 Current Graduation Requirements

A public school student shall be granted a State of Delaware Diploma when such student has successfully completed a minimum of twenty two credits in order to graduate including: 4 credits in English Language Arts, 3 credits in mathematics, 3 credits in science, 3 credits in social studies, 1 credit in physical education, 1/2 credit in health, 1 credit in computer literacy, 3 credits in a Career Pathway, and 3 1/2 credits in elective courses.

3.0 Graduation Requirements Beginning with the Class of 2011 (Freshman Class of 2007-2008)

3.1 Beginning with the graduating class of 2011, a public school student shall be granted a State of Delaware Diploma when such student has successfully completed a minimum of twenty two (22) credits in order to graduate including: four (4) credits in English Language Arts, four (4) credits in Mathematics; three (3) credits in Science, three (3) credits in Social Studies, one (1) credit in physical education, one half (1/2) credit in health education, three (3) credits in a Career Pathway, and three and one half (3 ) credits in elective courses.

3.1.1 Students shall complete mathematics course work that includes no less than the equivalent of the traditional requirements of Geometry, Algebra I and Algebra II courses.

3.1.2 Scientific investigations related to the State Science Standards shall be included in all three science course requirements.

3.1.3 During the senior year students shall maintain a credit load each semester that earns them at least a majority of credits that could be taken that semester including one (1) of the four credits required in Mathematics.

3.1.3.1 Senior year credits shall include regular high school course offerings, the options available in 8.0 or a combination of both.

3.1.3.1.1 Options for the senior year in 3.1.3.1 that the districts and charter schools provide shall be submitted to the Department with a copy to the office of the State Board of Education for review.

4.0 Monitoring Student Progress

4.1 Beginning with the 2007-2008 school year each district or charter school board, as applicable, shall require each middle school to develop an Individual Learning Plan (ILP) for all eighth grade students. ILPs shall be developed by the guidance counselor, the student, the student's parent(s), guardian(s) or Relative Caregiver, and at least one core content teacher. For the 2007-2008 school year only each district or charter school board, as applicable, shall also require each high school to develop an Individual Learning Plan (ILP) for all ninth grade students.

4.2 Beginning with the 2007- 2008 school year each high school shall establish Instructional Support Teams to monitor student progress in consultation with students and their parent(s), guardian(s) or Relative Caregiver to recommend and arrange support services.

4.2.1 Each marking period student progress on the ILP shall be monitored by Instructional Support Teams. Students not making satisfactory progress in the courses required for graduation in English Language Arts, Mathematics, Science or Social Studies shall receive support services.

4.2.2 Students who have failed courses required for graduation in English Language Arts, Mathematics, Science or Social Studies at the end of any high school year may have their ILP revised to include appropriate support services. A fifth year of high school may be an option for inclusion in the student's ILP. Changes in a student's ILP shall require consultation with the student and with the student's parent(s), guardian(s) or Relative Caregiver, if appropriate.

5.0 Credit Requirements Beginning with the Graduation Class of 2013 (Freshman Class of 2009-2010)

Beginning with the graduating class of 2013, a public school student shall be granted a State of Delaware Diploma when such student has successfully completed a minimum of twenty four (24) credits in order to graduate including: four (4) credits in English Language Arts, four (4) credits in Mathematics, three (3) credits in Science, three (3) credits in Social Studies, two (2) credits in a World Language, one (1) credit in physical education, one half (1/2) credit in health education, three (3) credits in a Career Pathway, and three and one half (3 ) credits in elective courses.

5.1 World Language (RESERVED)

6.0 Career Pathway

Districts and charter school boards shall establish policies concerning the purpose and content of their Career Pathways.

7.0 Additional Credit Requirements

District and charter school boards may establish additional credit requirements for graduation above the minimum number of credits required by the Department.

2.0 8.0 Options for Awarding Credit Toward High School Graduation

28.1 Local school boards and charter school boards of directors District and charter school boards are authorized to award credit toward high school graduation for the following activities, on the condition that the activities incorporate any applicable state content standards. Before awarding credit for any of the following activities, the local school board or districts and charter school boards of directors shall have adopted a policy approving the activity for credit and establishing any specific conditions for the award of credit for the activity. Such policy shall be applicable to each school within the district or governed by the charter school board of directors.or each charter high school.

2.8.1.1 Courses taken at or through an accredited community college, two or four year college.

2.8.1.2 Voluntary community service as defined in 14 Del.C. §§8901A, and 8902A.

2.8.1.3 Supervised work experience in the school and the community which meets the educational objectives or special career interest of the individual student.

2.8.1.4 Independent study.

2.8.1.5 Correspondence Courses.

2.8.1.6 Distance learning courses. These courses may be delivered by the teacher to the learner in real time, online or by video.

2.8.1.7 High school courses taken while in the middle school in conjunction with an articulated agreement between the district middle school and the district high school(s). Such credit shall also transfer to a high school in another district or to a charter school.

2.8.1.8 Course credit transferred from another high school.

2.8.1.9 Course credit earned through summer or evening school classes, as a member of the military service or as part of the James H. Groves Adult High School.

2.8.1.10 Tutoring programs taught by a teacher certified in the subject being taught.

2.8.1.11 Course credit awarded by agencies or instrumentalities of the state other than public schools which provide educational services to students. A description of the program provided to the student, grades given, and the number of clock hours of instruction or a demonstration of competency must be provided to the school district or charter school prior to receipt of credit.

3.0 9.0 High School Diplomas and the Certificate of Performance

39.1 A State sanctioned diploma shall be granted to students who meet the state and local district or charter school requirements for graduation pursuant to regulation 14 Del.C. §152 (a) (b) (c) and (d).

39.2 A State sanctioned cCertificate of pPerformance will shall be granted to students who meet the requirements of 14 Del.C. §152(e).

39.3 Diplomas from one school year shall not be issued after December 31 of the next school year.

39.4 Duplicate diplomas or certificates of performance will not be issued, but legitimate requests for validation of the diploma or the certificate of performance will be satisfied through a letter of certification. Requests for diploma information from graduates of Delaware high schools should be directed to the high school the student was attending at the time of graduation. If the school does not have the records then the student should contact the Department of Education in Dover for a notarized letter of certification that contains the name of the applicant, the name of the school, the date of graduation, and the diploma registry number (if available).

39.5 State High School Diploma for World War II Veterans Pursuant to 14 Del.C. §159 (a) (b) (c))

39.5.1 “World War II Veteran” means any veteran who performed wartime service between December 7, 1941 and December 31, 1946. If the veteran was in the service on December 31, 1946, continuous service before July 16, 1947 is considered World War II.

39.5.2 The Department of Education shall provide a high school diploma to any World War II veteran who:

39.5.2.1 Left a Delaware high school prior to graduation in order to serve in the armed forces of the United States.

39.5.2.2 Did not receive a high school diploma, or received a G.E.D., as a consequence of such service and,

39.5.2.3 Was discharged from the armed forces under honorable circumstances.

39.5.3 The diploma may also be awarded posthumously if the deceased veteran meets the qualifications in 39.5.2.1 through 39.5.2.3.

39.5.4 Applications for this high school diploma shall be made on forms designated by the Delaware Department of Education and the Delaware Commission of Veterans Affairs and shall have a copy of the candidate’s honorable discharge papers attached to the application.

4 DE Reg. 995 (12/1/00)

5 DE Reg. 625 (9/1/01)

7 DE Reg. 1344 (4/1/04)

10 DE Reg. 547 (09/01/06) (Final)