Schools containing grades 10 through 12 or any combination of grades 10 through 12 must apply as high schools. Schools containing grades 7 through 12 or any combination thereof may apply as high schools. The following standards for high school programs are to be used by principals of schools who are making application for Provisional, Accredited, or Accredited With Qualitystatus for programs in their schools. The number of standards required to be answered affirmatively in order to meet the 85% required by the Commission for Accredited status is given at the beginning of each section of standards.
Documents verifying compliance with the following standards must be provided to the consultant.
(For Accredited status, 9 affirmative answers are required, including standards 1 through 8.)
- The school day consists of at least six hours exclusive of lunch and break periods. (Normal class changing time will count as being part of the six hour school day. Schools may operate on shortened schedules for up to one day per grading period for teacher‑parent conferences.)
- The length of each instructional period is at least 55 minutes gross and 50 minutes net. (Schools which have developed flexible schedules or block schedules will not be in violation of this standard providing at least 135 hours of instruction are provided for each Carnegie Unit granted.) The seat time requirement may be waived for up to one Carnegie Unit of Credit per student per school year for independent study and/or distance learning courses without being in violation of this standard when they successfully complete the exit exams approved by the school for the courses.
- The maximum individual class size is 35 and the maximum system‑wide average class size is 30.8 or less, with the following exceptions:
- Remedial classes without aides do not exceed 18 students.
- Remedial classes with aides do not exceed 24 students
- Instrumental music classes do not exceed 100 students.
- Choral music classes do not exceed 80 students.
- Physical education classes without aides do not exceed 40 students.
- Physical education classes with aides do not exceed 53 students.
- Co‑Op‑Supervision class loads do not exceed 56 students.
- The maximum number of students per teacher per week does not exceed the following:
- Physical education ‑ 265 students with aides, 200 students without aides.
- Instrumental music ‑ 500 students.
- Choral music ‑ 400 students.
- Military training ‑ 500 students.
- Typing or Keyboarding ‑ 175 students.
- All other classes ‑ 150 students.
(Schools on block schedules where individual classes meet only two or three times per week will be considered as meeting this standard if the average class sizes, based on a five day week, are not exceeded.)
- The principal of the school has at least one‑half of his or her time free from teaching responsibilities for supervision of the instructional program. Principals of schools with 14 or more teachers have full time for administration and supervision.
- All inter‑school contests and all other school‑sponsored activities are under direct and complete control of the school administration. Responsibilities related to school‑sponsored activities are not delegated to any person or persons other than employees of the school or system.
- The Media Center has a minimum of 10 books per student or a minimum of 7 books per student and an annual expenditure of $2.00 or more per student for computer disks, video cassettes, video disks, filmstrips and other non-print media.
- Each teacher has at least one 30-minute period during the class day for planning and preparation for instruction with the following exception. Teachers who are on extended day programs may have planning periods outside the regular class day.
- The school requires the completion of a four‑year course of study above the eighth grade for graduation.
- At least 60% of the students enter from accredited feeder schools.
- The school provides each student a minimum of 30 minutes for lunch.
- The organization of the Media Center collection and the school schedule facilitates use of the collection by students during all school hours.
- Student personnel services include access to health and psychological counseling services.
- When offered by the school, the weekly meals provide one‑third of the recommended weekly dietary allowance of nutrients and include meat or a meat alternate, bread, milk, and fruits and/or vegetables.
- Summer School
(For Accredited status, 5 affirmative answers are required.)
- The summer school program is operated in such a manner that needed supportive services are available to students. The school system also handles all funds involved in the summer program. In addition, all conditions of Provisional accreditation are met
- There are at least 120 clock hours of instruction for each 15 quarter hours of credit or each Carnegie Unit awarded.
- The school does not grant students more than 25 quarter hours of credit or 1‑1/2 Carnegie Units in a summer school of 30 days or less. Nor does it grant more than 30 quarter hours of credit or two Carnegie Units during any summer school period.
- No teacher teaches more than two subjects in the same period.
- Credit is not granted to any student in more than three subject areas during any summer school period.
(For Accredited status, 10 affirmative answers are required, including standards 1 through 9.)
- In addition to the principal, the teaching staff includes five or more full‑time, qualified teachers in the high school.
- A school with an enrollment of 750 or more must have a full‑time assistant principal. A combination school (that is, an elementary and high school under one administration) of 30 or more teachers must have an assistant principal. Either the principal or the assistant principal must have responsibility in the elementary area.
- All teachers employed on a full‑time or part‑time basis as instructors in the school hold a Georgia professional certificate or a Bachelor’s degree with a minimum of 18 semester hours of professional education. An exception may be granted for those teachers issued permits by the Georgia Department of Education. This standard may also be met by teachers with bachelor’s degrees completing 6 semester hours per year of appropriate professional education until 18 semester hours of credit are obtained.
- All teachers employed on a full‑time or part‑time basis as instructors in the school hold an in‑field Georgia certificate or a minimum of 27 semester hours in the field in which the major part of their teaching lies. All teachers also have a minimum of 6 semester hours in any field in which they teach. An exception may be granted for those teachers issued permits by the Georgia Department of Education.
- The principal holds a Georgia state administrator’s professional certificate. In non‑public schools, the principal may hold a master’s degree with a minimum of 15 semester hours in school administration and supervision.
- The superintendent or headmaster holds a five‑year Georgia administrator’s certificate in order for any school in the system to be accredited. In non‑public schools, the superintendent or headmaster holds, as a minimum, a master’s degree with a minimum of 15 semester hours in school administration and supervision.
- Schools with 7 through 9 teachers have 1/4‑time secretarial service, 10 through 13 teachers have 1/2‑time secretarial service, l4 through 16 teachers have 3/4-time secretarial service, and with17 or more teachers have full‑time secretarial service.
- Schools with between 201 and 250 students have one person assigned at least one‑half time to media services.
- All persons employed as paraprofessionals, auxiliary helpers or teachers’ aides are under the direct supervision of a professionally qualified person.
- The qualifications and assignments of Media Specialists conform to the following provisions:
A minimum of:
|Time in Media Center A minimum of:|
|Up to 250||12 semester hours in Media||One-half Day|
|251 to 375||12 semester hours in Media||Full-time|
|376 to 750||15 semester hours in Media||Full-time with half-time clerk|
|751 to 1000||master’s degree with S-5 in media or master’s degree with at least 15 semester hours in Media||Full-time with full-time clerk|
|1001 and above||master’s degree with S-5 in media or master’s degree with at least 15 semester hoursin Media||Full-time with full-time clerk and 1 associate media specialist master’s degree|
A high school that is part of a combination school has media service allocated on the basis of the total enrollment of the combination school.
- A school counselor with at least a master’s degree and 18 semester hours credit in guidance and counseling or SC‑5 certificate is assigned for guidance and testing equivalent to one period per day for each 100 students. For each additional 500 students or major fraction, an additional full‑time counselor is employed.
- Assistant principals have preparation leading toward a Georgia state administrator’s professional certificate or a master’s degree with 15 semester hours in administration and supervision. Assistant principals who do not meet these requirements may earn 6 semester hours in administration and supervision each year until the requirements are met.
- All teachers who do not hold current Georgia teaching certificates and who have been employed by the school or school system for five years or more have received at least 6 semester hours or 10 quarter hours of college credit, or 10 continuing education units, or 100 contact hours in locally approved professional development activities within the past 5 years.
- Programs of Study
(For Accredited status, 4 affirmative answers are required, including standards 1 through 4.)
- Twenty-one Carnegie Units of credit in grades 9 through 12 are required for graduation.
- At least 27 unit courses are taught for credit each year. Each of these 27 units constitutes a full year’s work. A school may meet this requirement by alternating foreign language I and II or chemistry and physics.
- All graduating students meet the following requirements:
|American History Government||1 Unit|
|Other Social Sciences||2 Units|
|Physical and Natural Sciences||3 Units|
|Physical Education||½ Unit|
- All academic work transferred from a school accredited by the Georgia Accrediting Commission is accepted with the following exception. A student may not be granted credit for more than 30quarter hours or two Carnegie Units during any summer school period, including transfer credit.
- Evidence exists that a program of health and physical education is conducted in accordance with accepted practice.
- All transfer credit that is not from a GAC or SACS accredited school is validated. Acceptance of work endorsed by other accrediting groups is the prerogative of local schools. To validate credit, a school may give examinations or may certify satisfactory performance.