Graduation Requirements

Graduation from Douglas County high schools is a culminating event that results from the foundations built at the elementary and middle levels. Graduation is a collaborative effort among levels in a student’s school career. Each level of school and each staff member or parent/guardian who instructs or counsels a student shares responsibility for the ultimate ability of that student to demonstrate proficiency in the content standards and to meet the expectations for graduation. The high school diploma awarded by DCSD represents a high standard of quality in curriculum content, instruction, and student learning.

New Graduation Requirements
Beginning with the Class of 2021

The Douglas County School District is committed to ensuring that every student is college and career ready. Beginning with the Class of 2021, students must meet four requirements in order to graduate and receive a high school diploma. 

1. Create an Academic Plan

Students will create and complete an Individual Career and Academic Plan (ICAP) and/or Individualized Education Program (IEP) that meets the District’s graduation requirements.

2. Earn 24 Credits

Students must satisfy all of the following requirements:

a. 16 Credits in the following CORE Curricular Areas as follows

  • Language Arts 4.0
  • Mathematics 3.0*
  • Science 3.0
  • Social Studies 3.0 **
  • Practical Arts 1.0
  • Fine Arts 1.0
  • Physical Education 1.0

*Must include a minimum of Algebra 1 as one of the 3.0 credits;

**Must include 1.0 credit of US or World History and 0.5 credits of American Government

b. 8 Credits in Electives

3. Perform Community Service

Students must document a minimum of twenty hours community service while enrolled as a high school student.

4. Demonstrate competence in English and Math

Beginning with the class of 2021, in addition to satisfying the district's graduation requirements, district students will also be required to demonstrate college and career readiness via one of the approved methods outlined in the chart below in order to receive a diploma from a district school. Students must provide documentation of meeting or exceeding the required level of readiness in both Mathematics and English through one of the following:

  English Math
Next Generation ACCUPLACER

241 on Reading or 236 on Writing

235 Advanced Algebra & Functions (AAF)
255 on Arithmetic (AR) or
230 on Quantitative Reasoning, Algebra, and Statistics (QAS)
62 on Reading Comprehension or 70 on Sentence Skills 
61 on Elementary Algebra
ACT 18 19
ACT WorkKeys Bronze+
Advanced Placement 2 2
ASVAB 31 on Armed Forces Qualification Test (AFQT)  31 on Armed Forces Qualification Test (AFQT)
Concurrent Enrollment Passing Grade Passing Grade
International Baccalaureate 4 4
SAT 470 500
District Capstone* Passing Score Passing Score
Industry Certificate Individualized Individualized
Performance Based Assessment*  State Criteria State Criteria

*Under development


College and career demonstrations necessary to earn a standard high school diploma may be adapted to accommodate English learners, gifted students and students with disabilities.

Adopted: October 18, 2016

Graduation Policies

IKF Beginning with the Class of 2012 Diploma and Graduation Requirements
IKF-R-1 Beginning with the Class of 2012 Diploma and Graduation Requirements
IKF-R-2 MS HS Credit Policy
IKF-R-3 Graduation Competencies (beginning with the Class of 2021)

IKFA Early Graduation

More Information

Graduation Requirements Flyer 2021 & Beyond 


CDE's Graduation Guidelines

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Douglas County School District Nondiscrimination Notice: The Douglas County School District does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, religion, national origin, ancestry, creed, age, marital status, genetic information, or physical characteristics, disability or need for special education services in admissions, access to, treatment of, or employment in educational programs or activities. The School District’s Compliance Officer is Ted Knight, Assistant Superintendent, 620 Wilcox Street, Castle Rock, Colorado,, 303-387-0067. Complaint procedures have been established for students, parents, employees and members of the public.