Graduation Requirements

A "Diploma" signifies completion of the course and other requirements below (21 minimum total) and is awarded to qualifying students. Unless special permission is given, students need to be enrolled in five or six classes each semester.

Minimum Course Requirements Include


4 credits


2 credits in one language (through 2nd-year course)


3 credits (at least through Advanced Algebra)


3 credits (Physics, Chemistry, Biology)


2 credits (History 9 and U.S. History)

Philosophy & Religion

1 credit (two semester courses)


2 credits

Physical Education

1/2 credit (2 1/2 credits if no sport included)


1/2 credit


3.5 credits (to be chosen from departmental offerings)

Other Requirements

Activity Program

The Activity co-curricular program exists in order to enrich the Upper School whole student experience. Activity accomplishes this goal by providing opportunities for student and faculty experimentation, innovation, and leadership. Activities enable the sharing of expertise outside of a faculty member's or a student's normal academic arena, and they frequently benefit the school community at large. Broader student-faculty-community bonds often result. Departments may also use Activities as a way of expanding their offerings in ways that enhance the overall curricular program. Students are required to take six trimesters of activity in the Upper School. 

Unlike the academic calendar, Activity is scheduled into three, 10 or 11 week trimesters:

  • Fall: 1st day of school through Winter Break
  • Winter: Winter Break through Spring Break
  • Spring: Spring Break through last day of school
Service Learning

Satisfactory participation in the service learning program. (See full program description here.)


Satisfactory involvement in full- or half-day Winterim courses. (See full program description here.)

Graduation Certificates

A "Graduation Certificate" is awarded in unusual cases to a student who has not met the full distribution requirements of OES but has passed at least five courses during each semester of attendance, has attended for at least two full semesters, and has earned at least 21 high school credits from OES and/or another accredited secondary institution.