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Novato USD |  AR  5126  Students

Awards For Achievement   

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The Superintendent or designee may appoint an awards committee at each school which may consist of school administrators, teachers, parents/guardians, community members, and student representatives.

(cf. 1220 - Citizen Advisory Committees)

Golden State Seal Merit Diploma

To be eligible to receive the Golden State Seal Merit Diploma upon high school graduation, a student shall complete all requirements for a high school diploma and demonstrate, in accordance with the means adopted by the State Board of Education, mastery of the curriculum in at least six subject areas, four of which shall be mathematics, English language arts, science, and United States history, with the remaining two subject matter areas selected by the student. (Education Code 51451, 51452; 5 CCR 876)

(cf. 6143 - Courses of Study)

(cf. 6146.1 - High School Graduation Requirements)

(cf. 6146.11 - Alternative Credits Toward Graduation)

(cf. 6162.52 - High School Exit Examination)

To demonstrate mastery of these subject areas, the student shall earn a scaled score of 370 or above on six separate high school California Standards Tests (CST), including:

1. One mathematics exam, including Algebra II, Geometry, Summative High School Mathematics, or Integrated Mathematics 2 or 3

2. One English language arts exam at grade 9, 10, or 11

3. One science exam, including Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Earth Science, or Integrated/Coordinated Science 1, 2, 3, or 4

4. The grade 11 History-Social Science exam (United States history)

5. Two CSTs of the student's choice, which may include World History or any additional exams listed in items #1-4 above which have not already been used to establish eligibility

(cf. 6162.51 - Standardized Testing and Reporting Program)

The Superintendent or designee shall maintain appropriate records to identify students who are eligible for the merit diploma and shall affix an insignia to the diploma and transcript of each student awarded the merit diploma. (Education Code 51454)

(cf. 5125 - Student Records)

The Superintendent or designee shall submit an insignia request form to the California Department of Education in sufficient time to allow processing of the request prior to the high school graduation ceremony.

Biliteracy Award

To be eligible to receive the State Seal of Biliteracy upon graduation, a student shall meet all the following criteria: (Education Code 51461)

1. Complete all English language arts requirements for high school graduation with an overall grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 or above in those classes

2. Pass the CST in English language arts administered in grade 11 at the proficient level or above

3. Demonstrate proficiency in one or more foreign languages, which may include American sign language, by fulfilling one of the following criteria:

a. Pass a foreign language Advanced Placement examination with a score of 3 or higher or an International Baccalaureate examination with a score of 4 or higher

(cf. 6141.5 - Advanced Placement)

b. Successfully complete a four-year high school course of study in a foreign language, attaining an overall GPA of 3.0 or above in that course of study

(cf. 6142.2 - World/Foreign Language Instruction)

c. Pass the SAT II foreign language examination with a score of 600 or higher

In addition to meeting the criteria in items #1-3 above, a student in any of grades 9-12 whose primary language is other than English shall attain the early advanced proficiency level or higher on the California English Language Development Test (CELDT). As necessary for this purpose, the district may administer the CELDT an additional time outside of the regularly scheduled administration specified in AR 6174 - Education for English Language Learners. (Education Code 51461)

(cf. 6174 - Education for English Language Learners)

The Superintendent or designee shall maintain appropriate records to identify high school students who qualify for the award and shall affix the insignia to the diploma or transcript of each student who earns the award. (Education Code 51463)


The Superintendent or designee shall annually distribute information about eligibility requirements for the Golden State Seal Merit Diploma, State Seal of Biliteracy, and/or any district awards programs to students at the applicable grade levels.


approved: September 17, 2013 Novato, California