Graduation Plans Offer More Selectivity

New Graduation Plans Offer More Selectivity for Students


April 10, 2014
- In May of 2013, the 83rd Texas Legislature put into place a new law, known as House Bill 5, which changes graduation requirements for all students in the state, beginning with students who will be high school freshmen next year. This year's 9th and 10th graders also had the option of moving to the new plan and have been counseled to do so because the new graduation plans are beneficial for students, providing more choice and flexibility.

The new graduation plan, called the “Foundation High School Program plus Endorsement,” allows students to choose an endorsement area (similar to a college major), and select courses in high school which more closely fit academic and career interests.

The five endorsement areas are: 

  • Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM)
  • Business and Industry
  • Arts and Humanities
  • Public Services
  • Multidisciplinary

Within each endorsement, AISD offers more specialized “programs of study.” For example, a student could pursue an electronics program of study within the STEM endorsement area.

Students who take Algebra II as one of their math credits and who earn four credits each in math and science, in addition to an endorsement, can graduate under the Distinguished Level of Achievement and are eligible for automatic admission to state universities if they graduate in the top 10 percent of their class. Like the previous graduation programs, the new Foundation plus Endorsement and Distinguished Level of Achievement plans each require 26 credits to graduate.   

Each of the AISD high schools and middle schools have hosted parent meetings regarding these changes, and all 8th and 9th graders have met individually with their counselors to select endorsements, choose classes for next year, and discuss their personal graduation plans.

“As parents, I would urge you to keep the lines of communication open and take time to visit with your children about their career interests and options, as well as their goals for life after high school,” AISD Superintendent Rod Schroder said. “This is a very important time in the life of your child, and we appreciate your support in helping him or her navigate through the new graduation plans and the resulting choices and decisions.” 

Families are encouraged to visit with their child’s counselor if they have questions, or go to the “Graduation Plans” section on the district website,, under the “Parents” tab. (Also linked at the bottom of this page.) There is a wealth of information there, including a description of each program of study offered in AISD and a “Frequently Asked Questions” section. Revisit a child’s high school course plan and explore their education and career interests and aptitudes by utilizing  [Portfolio name: “amaisd” + “student id #” (example: amaisd123456) Password: 8 digit birthday yyyymmdd (example: 19961206)]

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