Board Policy #S-5127

New Haven Unified School District


High school graduation ceremonies shall be held to recognize those students who have successfully completed the required course of study, passed all proficiency standards, and thereby earned the right to receive a diploma. The Governing Board believes that these students deserve a public celebration that recognizes on the significance of their achievement and encourages them to continue the pursuit of learning throughout their lives.

(cf. 5125.2 Withholding Grades, Diploma or Transcripts)
(cf. 6146.1 High School Graduation Requirements/Standards of Proficiency)

Invocations and/or benedictions shall not be included in graduation ceremonies. Ceremonies or programs involving prayer for graduates may not be sponsored by the school or district.

(cf. 1330 Use of School Facilities)
(cf. 5145.2 Freedom of Speech/Expression)

Disciplinary Considerations

While recognizing the importance of graduation ceremonies, the Board also desires to maintain high standards of student conduct and behavior. Graduation ceremonies are offered for students in good standing. The principal may deny the privilege of participating in these ceremonies in accordance with school rules which provide for due process.

(cf. 5144 Discipline)

Elementary/Middle School Promotion Exercises

The Board desires that each elementary and middle school provide age appropriate promotion exercises to recognize students who have completed the school's course of study.

(cf. 5132 Dress and Grooming)

Legal Reference:

40014 Lease of personal property; caps and gowns
48904 Liability of parent or guardian; withholding of grades, diplomas, transcripts
51225.5 Honorary diplomas; foreign exchange students
51400-51403 Elementary school diploma
51410 Diplomas: no indication of intellectual classification
51411 Residence as condition for graduation; prohibition
51412 Standards of proficiency

Sands v. Morongo Unified School District (1991) 53 Cal. 3d 863
Lemon v. Kurtzman (1971) 403 U.S. 602
Mifflin County School District v. Stewart (PA. Cmwlth. 1986) 503 A.2d 1012 30 Educ. L.R. 403
Fowler v. Board of Education of the Hickory Administrative School Unit (1978) 448 F. Supp. 497

Management Resources:

0615.89 Granting credit for passing GED, SPB:88/89-11

First Reading
February 1, 1994

Second Reading
March 1, 1994

Administrative Regulation for Board Policy 5127