General Information & Graduation Requirements


In order to participate in graduation, students must meet all graduation requirements listed below. Students are required to carry a credit load of 7 credits for each of their four years in high school.

Subject Area Credits

  • English 4.0
  • Mathematics 4.0
  • Science & Technology 4.0
  • Social Studies 3.0
    including U.S. History
  • Fine/Applied Arts 2.0
    (Art, Music, Theatre Arts, Business & Technology, Family & Consumer Science)
  • Global Languages 2.0
  • Wellness 2.0*
    (Physical Education and Health)
  • Electives 3.0
  • Total 24

*Beginning with the Class of 2016, all students are required to take 4 years of Wellness classes.

*Beginning with the class of 2017, students will be required to successfully complete a half credit Wellness class each of their four years at Melrose High School to meet Massachusetts State Regulations on Health and Fitness.

All students are required to pass the MCAS test in the areas specified by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in order to receive a diploma. In addition, students will be required to show proficiency in the subject area on the MCAS either through exam score or through an Educational Proficiency Plan (EPP).

Community Service is required of all students in order to graduate. Twelve (12) hours are required for each year a student is in attendance at Melrose High School. Of these required service hours, a total of thirty (30) hours of content-specific community service are required for students participating in the GEM and/or STEM pathways. It is recommended that these hours be completed over the course of the four years.


Melrose High School will prepare all students to be ready for both college and career. Students will experience a rich and broad curriculum aligned to the Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks. Students will continue to have the opportunity to enroll in a Pathway of Study. Students who do not choose a Pathway of Study will be scheduled in a traditional comprehensive curriculum. All Melrose High School students are expected to have the skills and content knowledge to be successful in college and careers. These students will be exposed to many areas of study and be able to experience an internship opportunity. Students will have options to take many electives and be able to take courses within any pathway. Students may enter a pathway during any year but may not be able to complete the pathway.


Advanced Placement courses are designed to prepare students for the academic rigor of college. The courses are a challenging experience and the curriculum is modeled after a college freshmen class. AP courses follow a national curriculum (college board) designed to prepare students to successfully take and achieve a passing score on the AP exam in the spring. All students enrolled in AP courses are required to take the respective AP exams. Students are also expected to complete summer work, attend 2-3 Saturday Study Sessions for each content area, and attend the AP Practice Exam sessions. At Melrose High School we believe that every student has the potential to take and find success in an AP course and we encourage all students to challenge themselves. Given the academic rigor, the students need to have solid work habits and strong organizational skills, and be self-motivated in their studies.


Students have the option of choosing one of our five Pathways of Study at Melrose High School. In addition to the well-established GEM and STEM pathways students have the opportunity to choose a pathway in Business, The Arts, and Humanities. Students who complete the GEM and STEM pathway programs will receive a special certificate at graduation. The three new pathways are not currently certificate programs but will be in the future. The Pathways of Study are designed to expose students to a focused curriculum that will further prepare them for college and career. Pathways of Study include some scheduling options, a capstone project and in some cases internship opportunities.


MassCore, or the Massachusetts High School Program of Studies, is a recommended, rigorous course of study based on standards in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts’s curriculum frameworks that aligns high school coursework with college and career expectations. It was developed to provide guidance for a rigorous course of study that will help students have the necessary academic preparation required for success in postsecondary education and the workplace. The recommended program of studies includes:

  • 4 units of English
  • 4 units of mathematics
  • 3 units of a lab-based science
  • 3 units of history
  • 2 units of the same foreign language
  • 1 year of fine arts
  • 5 additional “core” courses from the above categories

MassCore also includes potential additional learning opportunities such as Advanced Placement classes, dual enrollment and early college, senior and capstone projects, online courses for high school or college credit, and service or work-based learning.

All Melrose High School graduates fully satisfy the MassCore recommendations