Oregon Department of Education
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8/7/2008 3:18:00 PM
Memo # 001-2008-09 New Oregon Diploma Requirements Approved by State Board
To: District Superintendents, ESD Superintendents, Principals, District and School Staff

Re: New Oregon Diploma Requirements Approved by State Board

Summary: In May and June, the State Board of Education gave final approval to three Oregon Administrative Rules (OARs), changing the state’s longstanding high school graduation requirements. The new rules make changes to high school credit requirements and the modified diploma and set out requirements for the assessment of essential skills. The new diploma requirements take effect with the class of 2012 and 2014. Click here to view the OARs.

The new Oregon high school diploma includes increased credit requirements, multiple options for students to demonstrate proficiency in a set of Essential Skills, and the requirement for students to complete personalized learning activities.

The number of required credits increases from 22 to 24. (note: the 2005 Oregon Legislature already increased English and mathematics credits for the class of 2010). In addition, all students will be required to demonstrate that they are proficient in a set of “Essential Skills,” – initially reading, writing, math, and speaking. Students will demonstrate their mastery of the Essential Skills by:
  • completing an approved locally scored assessment, such as a work sample or student project
    -- or --
  • achieving a state-determined score on the state assessment tests in reading, writing and mathematics
    -- or --
  • achieving a state-determined score on another standardized test yet to be determined
The Oregon diploma approved by the State Board is different than what many other states across the country have done. Oregon will not require students to pass a single “exit exam” of academic proficiency in order to graduate. The State Board approved a system of multiple options and opportunities for students to pass state-determined exams to show they meet the Essential Skills requirement.

The State Board voted to continue the following personalized learning requirements (required since 2007):
  • Education Plan and Profile: Students will develop an Education Plan and Profile to guide their learning and document academic achievement and progress toward their personal, career, and post-high school goals.
  • Career-Related Learning Experiences: Students will participate in experiences that connect classroom learning with real life experiences in the workplace, community, and/or school relevant to their education plan.
  • Extended Application: Students will apply and extend their knowledge in new and complex situations related to the student’s personal and career interests and post-high school goals through critical thinking, problem solving, or inquiry in real world contexts.
  • The Career-Related Learning Standards: continue through 2012, at which time they become part of the Essential Skills.
Click here for detailed diploma information and FAQ's.

Click here PDFfor information on requirements for the assessment of essential skills (from the 2008-09 test administration manual).
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Salem, OR 97310-0203

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