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Graduation Requirements

Upper School
Class of 2020 Graduates throw their hats into the air and celebrate

Graduation requirements are established and revised by the Upper School administration in consultation with the faculty, and are subject to approval by the Board of Trustees. In order to qualify for the ZIS Diploma a student must attend the Upper School for the full Grade 12 year or the full Grade 11 year and one semester of the Grade 12 year.

A student can earn a ZIS high school diploma based upon successful fulfillment of three requirements: attendance, course credit, and service learning.


Students must satisfactorily complete four years of school beyond Grade 8.

Course Credits

Students must earn 23 credits to graduate. Each year-long course is worth one credit. Over four years, credits must be distributed as follows:

4 English
2 World Language 
3 Social Studies
3 Mathematics
3 Science
2 Creative Arts
2 Physical Education
4 Electives (courses beyond required
23 credits

These are minimum credit requirements for the ZIS Diploma. Most students substantially exceed these requirements. Students enrolled in the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme during Grades 11 and 12 must satisfy all requirements stipulated by the IB Organisation in order to qualify for the IB Diploma.

Service Learning

Students are encouraged to care about each other and their environment. Service plays an important role in our students’ learning experience. Therefore it is a part of the graduation requirements for students to participate in direct service within the school, the local community and abroad during Grades 9 and 10.

Honors Diploma

A student who completes the ZIS high school diploma requirements, including three Advanced Placement (AP) or International Baccalaureate (IB) Higher Level certificate courses (in at least two subject areas), maintains a "B" (3.0 GPA) grade average during his/her final four semesters and does not have a grade lower than a "C" in his/her final year, will be awarded the ZIS Diploma with Honors.

ZIS Graduates after the ceremony
Kevin Lane shakes graduate's hand
ZIS Graduation Ceremony