What are the CRHS graduation requirements?


Photo Source: The Riverhawk Review Staff

2023 CRHS graduation ceremony at CSI

Madison Larson, Staff Reporter

UPDATE 2/13/2024: The Twin Falls School District has released its new requirements for the senior and junior projects for the Classes of 2025 and beyond. A list of these changes can be found here: https://theriverhawk.org/1912/news/twin-falls-school-district-makes-changes-to-senior-project/

Graduating high school can be an extremely stressful time in a student’s life. Worrying about if they have enough credits or about failing the tests required to graduate. Many things can go wrong when trying to leave high school and go into the world to pursue college or a career, but what is needed to graduate from Canyon Ridge High School, and what do students not know? 

To graduate from Canyon Ridge, students must meet the 52 required credits consisting of 8 Language Arts, 1 Speech, 6 Mathematics, 8 Social Studies, 6 Science, 2 Humanities, 1 Health, 2 Physical Education, 2 Computer Electives, and 16 General Electives. 2 Algebra and Geometry credits are required in mathematics, as well as Freshman History, two years of U.S. History, American Government, and Economics for social studies. 

Canyon Ridge offers many different computer credit classes; however, what is the difference between a class in a computer lab versus a computer credit class? Classes such as Personal Finance, Business Law and Ethics, and IDLA do not qualify as computer credit classes. Since these don’t count towards the computer elective credit requirement, they are regular elective classes. Computer electives offered at Canyon Ridge are Beginning and Intermediate Microsoft Office, Introduction to Interactive Media, Video Production, and Graphic Communications 1 through 3. 

Per the Idaho Code §33-1602.7., students must also complete and pass a civics test, otherwise known as the U.S. Citizenship Test. In the Twin Falls School District, the test can be taken between the 7th and 12th-grade years, and the student must obtain a score of 70 or higher to pass. Many students may not know that this test can be taken in early grades. Still, teachers and counselors are not too worried about students not passing the civics test, according to Mr. Matt Alexander, a counselor at Canyon Ridge. 

On the Twin Falls School District website, a practice test for the civics test is available to anyone who wants a practice test. It can be found underneath the Students and Graduation Requirements section. It will be located underneath the number of credits required and next to the senior project information. 

The senior project and junior board are meant to prepare students for life outside of high school. All Canyon Ridge students are required to complete and pass the senior project to graduate. The senior project consists of 30 hours of project time, a mentor, and a presentation. Paperwork is involved and is shared with the students via advisory or other classes. 

However, if the student is going to graduate with a technical certificate, Academic Certificate, or an Associate’s Degree, they are not required to complete the 30-hour senior project portion or the junior board. It is recommended that students do the junior board as a backup plan in case they fall behind and don’t graduate with an Academic Certificate or an Associate’s Degree. Mr. Alexander explained, “The state is saying you’ve done enough extra work to get your Associates that it should count as a senior project.”

Keep in mind, though, the information about the junior board and senior project keeps changing. For example, the junior board used to be required even when obtaining the Academic Certificate or an Associate’s. The requirements for the junior board and senior project can change in the near future. 

Gavin Petersen, a senior at Canyon Ridge, has had past issues with his English credits. Since he took his English classes at the College of Southern Idaho, he didn’t have enough high school language arts credits. Right now he is currently enrolled in two English classes because he has to make up the two credits he is missing.

If you take a college course at the college and not at the high school, the credits are only worth half the credits that have been earned. So if a class were worth three credits at CSI, only 1.5 credits would count for the high school credits. This poses a problem for students because year-long classes at the high school are only semester-long classes at the college level. The required credits for year-long classes are two credits, and the 1.5 credit amount means those students fall short. 

“There’s two reasons: One is seat time mandated by the state, and that’s how long you’re in the class. When you’re at CSI, you’re not in a class every day; you’re in a class three times a week for fifty minutes or twice a week for an hour and twenty-five minutes. The other reason is the district office gets to set what is granted for dual credit, credit for credit. That policy is mostly dictated by the state policy,” Mr. Alexander explained. 

While figuring out what you may need for graduation at Canyon Ridge may be difficult, this should make finding what you need to graduate easier. The graduation requirements are meant to prepare students for life, and most of what is needed to graduate has a purpose. 

To find the counselors go to the Counselor’s Corner on the Canyon Ridge High School website or look in any of the Canyon Ridge teachers’ classrooms for the QR codes to the forms for an appointment request.