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Graduation Requirements and Credits FAQ

How many credits do I need to graduate?

  • 220 credits are needed to earn an M-A high school diploma.

How many credits should I have at the beginning of tenth grade?

  • At least 60

How many credits should I have at the beginning of eleventh grade?

  • At least 120

How many credits should I have at the beginning of twelfth grade?

  • At least 160

What do I do if I am not on-track for graduation (I’m short on credits)?

  • If you have completed 9th grade and have fewer than 60 credits, please contact your counselor about summer school.  

  • If you are completing 10th grade or will be turning 16, you may be eligible to attend Redwood High School.  Applications are available from the Guidance Office or the Administrative Vice Principal’s Office. It is important to continue attending M-A until your transfer to Redwood has been approved.  If you are selected to attend Redwood, you must attend the mandatory orientation with a parent or guardian before transferring.

  • There are other options for you to discuss with your Counselor including taking the California High School Proficiency Exam (CHSPE), the General Equivalency Diploma (GED), or transferring to the Adult School.

Which classes meet the Visual and Performing Arts graduation requirement?

  • Courses offered at M-A  that meet the Visual and Performing Arts requirement change slightly from year to year, depending on student interest and staff availability.  They usually include:

    • Performing Arts Classes: Advanced Band, Jazz Band, Orchestra, Choral, Guitar, Drama, Stagecraft

    • Visual Arts Classes: Drawing and Painting, Ceramics, Digital Photography, Art Studio, AP Art Studio, AP Art History

Which classes meet the Career Technical Education (CTE) requirement?

  • Classes that meet the CTE requirement change slightly from year to year, depending on student interest and staff availability.  They usually include:

    • Digital Filmmaking, Adv Digital Filmmaking, Digital Com & Video, Journalism I, Digital Journalism II & III, Digital Photo & Design, Digi 3D Modeling & Anim, Adv Digi 3D Modeling & Anim, Graphic Design & Prod-P, Woods I, II, III, Drafting, Architect Design I, Engineering Technology, Foods & Nutrition, Culinary Arts, Mobile Apps Development, AP Computer Science - Principles and Java


I need to make up Life Skills.  What are my options?

  • The class is typically offered in summer school.  It is occasionally offered during the school year, during 0 period.  It may also be made up through the district’s online credit recovery program.   

I need to make up a class.  How can I do that?

  • Classes required for graduation may be made up in the following ways:  enroll in summer school (when offered), retake the class the following semester or year (not possible for English or social studies/history courses), take the class through the district’s online credit recovery program, or enroll in an accredited program (i.e. community college, etc.).  If a course is taken outside of the SUHSD, a district concurrent enrollment form must be completed and turned into your counselor prior to the first day of the SUHSD semester that the student intends to enroll in the class.

How can I earn Physical Education (PE) credits?

  • Typically, students earn ten credits (four quarters) of PE during ninth grade.  The additional ten credits required for graduation may be met by passing ten credits (four quarters) of PE during tenth grade.  

  • Student-athletes may also meet the requirement by successfully competing in three seasons of Menlo-Atherton team sports during the tenth through twelfth grade.  Student-athletes earn 3.5 elective credits for each season, and the combination of the three seasons will waive the remainder of the PE requirement.

  • Student-athletes who compete year-round for the cheerleading or dance teams will earn 7.0 elective credits for the year.  

  • Students may complete the 2nd year of PE (10 credits) through an accredited institution (i.e community college, online program) any time after the end of ninth grade. A district concurrent enrollment form must be completed and turned into your counselor prior to the first day of the SUHSD semester that the student intends to enroll in the class.  

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