• Academic Standards for Student Achievement


    Study of the natural world and facts, principles, theories and laws in the areas of biology, chemistry, physics and earth sciences. Technology is the application of science to enable societal development including food and fiber production, manufacturing, building, transportation and communication. Science and technology share the use of the senses, science processes, inquiry, investigation, analysis and problem-solving strategies.

    Understanding the components of ecological systems and their interrelationships with social systems and technologies. These components incorporate the disciplines of resource management, agricultural diversity, government and the impact of human actions on natural systems. This interaction leads to the study of watershed, threatened and endangered species, pest management and the development of laws and regulations.


          (i)      HISTORY
    Study of the record of human experience including important events; the nature of prejudice; change and continuity in political systems; effects of technology; importance of global-international perspectives; and the integration of geography, economics and civics studies on major developments in the history of the Commonwealth, the United States and the world.

          (ii)      GEOGRAPHY
    Study of relationships among people, places and environments, of geographic tools and methods, characteristics of place, concept of region and physical processes.

          (iii)      CIVICS AND GOVERNMENT
    Study of United States constitutional democracy, its values and principles, study of the Constitution of the Commonwealth and government including the study of principles, operations and documents of government, the rights and responsibilities of citizenship, how governments work and international relations.

          (iv)      ECONOMICS
    Study of how individuals and societies choose to use resources to produce, distribute and consume goods and services. Knowledge of how economies work, economic reasoning and basic economic concepts, economic decision making, economic systems, the commonwealth and the United States economy and international trade.

    Study of dance, theater, music, visual arts, language and literature including forms of expression, historical and cultural context, critical and aesthetic judgment and production, performance or exhibition of work.

    Understanding career options in relationship to individual interests, aptitudes and skills including the relationship between changes in society, technology, government and economy and their effect on individuals and careers. Development of knowledge and skill in job-seeking and job-relating skills and, for students completing vocational-technical programs, the skills to succeed in the occupation for which they are prepared.

    Study of concepts and skills which affect personal, family and community health and safety, nutrition, physical fitness, movement concepts and strategies, safety in physical activity settings, and leadership and cooperation in physical activities.

    Understanding the role of consumers as a foundation for managing available resources to provide for personal and family needs and to provide basic knowledge of child health and child care skills.

    Ability to communicate in language other than English, including the ability to understand and interpret written and spoken language on a variety of topics and to develop knowledge and understanding of other cultures.


    Courses Required of All Students


    Reading and Language Arts

    Reading and language arts are prerequisites to school success. Much attention is given to development of these skills in the elementary grades. An integrated language arts program combines reading skills, spelling, composition and other language skills necessary for communication. Students learn to decode and encode the English language. The district uses the Houghton Mifflin Reading series with supplemental literature for differentiated activities. Writing portfolios are required at each grade level and forwarded each year to the next grade level teacher. Classroom teachers and specialists use Project Read/Language Circle as a classroom-based program to provide differentiated instruction as needed.  The district has purchased supplemental novels to address those students reading above grade level in the Houghton Mifflin Reading series.  Reading specialists, regular education staff and teachers of the gifted selected novels as tleast two grades above level for differentiated instruction for gifted students.  Teachers of the gifted serve as resource personnel for the regular education teachers in the development of differentiating activities.


    The elementary math curriculum is a sequential study of concepts, computation skills and solving techniques. Materials from the Everyday Mathematics program comprise the core of the math program for general and special education.  Gifted teachers served on the math curriculum committee to specially design a curriculum for those students who have mastered unit concepts.  These enrichment activities are available to the regular education teachers.  Also, pre-algebra tutors are employed in every elementary building for gifted students in need of acceleration.  Gifted students taking Algebra I or geometry are instructed in the junior high schools to meet their individual needs.


    The Foss science series is the newly adopted hand-on science program for K-6 grade levels. The new elementary science will be an integral part of the elementary and special education program and is a hands-on approach to teaching. The primary goal of the program is for students to understand science through the development of the processes of science as a means of problem solving and to promote higher level thinking skills at each grade level.  Inherent in the FOSS program are activities at the conclusion of each experiment that foster critical thinking.  Regular education staff and teachers of the gifted are trained to differentiate activities to insure gifted students will be appropriately challenged.

    Social Studies

    The social studies program at the elementary level consists of world, American and Pennsylvania history with a particular emphasis on the Battle of Gettysburg. This academic discipline is currently in the needs assessment and evaluation process of the curriculum development process.  Teachers of the gifted have the ability to compact, accelerate or enrich the social studies curriculum.  The teachers of the gifted utilitize resources both traditional and electronic, to insure students reeive an enriched curriculum.  Social studies projects are challenging and tailored to meet individual academic and intellectual needs.

    Special Subjects and Electives

    Students in the elementary grades are scheduled for weekly physical education, library, art, and music classes. Students may also elect to participate in instrumental and choral music. Students begin formal technology training in kindergarten. Students are scheduled once a week in the computer lab, K-6. The students follow a curricular guide that meets state and national standards.



    7th and 8th Grade Course Selection

    Reading (full year)
    Reading/Foreign Language
    Survey Foreign Language (all 4 Foreign Languages)
    World History/Geography
    Transition to Algebra Part 1
    Life Science
    Family & Consumer Science
    Industrial Technology

    Reading (full year)
    Survey Foreign Language (full year 4 Foreign Languages)
    Full Year Foreign Language
    Reading Research 1/2 year
    U.S. History/Geography
    Transition to Algebra Part 2
    Earth/Space Science
    Family & Consumer Science
    Industrial Technology
    Computer Technology

    The middle school operates under the team approach concept. Four teachers and a special educator are assigned to a group of 100-120 students to provide English, math, science and social studies instruction. Reading is provided by the reading specialists and special educators. Creative arts are made available to all students.


    9th, 10th, 11th and 12th Grade Course Selection

    The program of studies in the high schools of the Central Dauphin School District offers a wide variety of courses. Preparing an educational program requires decision making and careful planning

    Graduation requirements are earned in grades nine through 12. Students should be able to develop a good educational plan and, most importantly, know where they stand for graduation at all times. To help maintain a record of courses and requirements, an Educational Planning Form is provided.


    The Central Dauphin School District offers a nondiscriminatory program. All courses are open to students regardless of race, national origin, sex or handicap.


    Acceleration - Students may work with teachers and counselors to schedule advanced courses. A student is not required to accelerate in all subjects. The primary purpose for accelerating is to provide students the opportunity to take advanced placement courses in the junior and/or senior years. The courses available for acceleration may vary slightly.

    Advanced Placement - The Advanced Placement Program (AP*) is a cooperative educational endeavor between secondary schools and colleges and universities. It gives high school students exposure to college-level material through involvement in the AP course, and then gives them an opportunity to show what they have learned by taking an AP Exam. Colleges and universities are then able to grant credit, placement or both to these students.

    Course Weight - Courses will carry a weight of at least 1.0. Certain college preparatory and advanced placement courses which require more specialization and are generally more difficult will have a greater weight, either 1.04 or 1.08. When class rank and grade point average are calculated, these weights will have an effect. A general description of how courses are weighted is:

    1.08 - Advanced placement, courses taught on the college freshman level.

    1.04 - Selected advanced sequential courses.

    1.0 - Courses not included above.

    Credit - With the course description students will find the credit and weight for each course offered. In the event of scheduling difficulty, meeting occasions and credit of certain courses may be adjusted by the principal.

    Curriculum - This is a planned program of study that contains the courses a student has selected to reach identified academic and/or career goals.

    Cycle - One complete rotation through the student schedule will take six school days. The school year will have a total of 30 cycles.

    Electives - An elective is a course that is chosen by the student and not listed as a graduation requirement. Note that both state and district requirements call for a minimum number of elective credits.

    Graduation Requirements - These are the courses and the credits necessary to graduate from high school. There are state and district requirements. The Central Dauphin School District requirements exceed the state requirements.

    Independent Study - Under special conditions an independent study may be possible. Students may not receive credit through an independent study for a course that is listed as a graduation requirement.

    Independent Study/Gifted Programs - Pupils meet with teachers and available community resource persons to work on contracted independent projects. Areas of pupil interest pertinent to their educational advancement are selected and scheduled. Classroom teachers and/or teachers of the gifted facilitate and monitor student progress. All such study must be cleared through the building principal. Specific guidelines must be followed. This independent study allows the student to better achieve the highest possible level of Pennsylvania academic standards.

    Sequential Courses - These are courses that are related; examples are Latin I and II.  NOTE: It is strongly recommended that a student earns a grade of 70 or better before scheduling the second level of a course.


    Individualized Transition Education Plan - A document required for a student to select a course from Individualized Education Programs and Services. Students eligible for Special Education Services receive individualized programs and services as determined by their Individualized Education Planning Team.

    Summer School - In order for students to attend summer education remedial courses for credit, an average of 40% must have been achieved during the school year.

    Central Dauphin School District Summer School (English) - Students who fail English in the 9th, 10th or 11th grade must attend the Central Dauphin School District Summer School in order to schedule the next sequential English class.

    Graduation Requirements

    Students graduating in 2007 must obtain credit in the following subjects in grades 9 to 12:







    Social Studies               




    Physical Education         






    Graduation Project          




    Credit Deficiency

    Students who have not earned the required credits for graduation after completing eight semesters of attendance in high school may return to high school to complete the requirements. Students must see the guidance counselor and principal to plan for the next school year.

    Grade Requirements

    The Central Dauphin School District use a 100-point system of evaluation with 60 as the lowest passing grade.







    Above Average








    Below Average





    Early Admission to College

    Students granted early admission to college and who successfully complete the year may substitute college freshman credits earned in a degree program for high school credits and graduate with their class. Full-time students mut complete twenty-four college credits (or equivalent) including a minimum of three credits in English, three credits in Mathematics, and one course in Physical Education shall be considered successful completion of the District graduation requirements. Approval for early admission to college and graduation from high school shall be granted by the building principal. An official transcript from the college must be filed with the building principal.

    Recommended College Preparatory Program of Studies by Grade
    Click here to view 2006 program.  

    Recommended Academic Preparatory Program of Studies by Grade
    Click here to view 2006 program. 

    The Dauphin County Technical School

    The Central Dauphin School District participates in the Dauphin County Technical School program. To be enrolled at the Dauphin County Technical School, a student must be at least in grade nine.

    Students identified as Special Education and/or Protected Handicapped Students or English as Second Language may attend Dauphin County Technical School with all services and programs provided.


    Entrance Procedures

    Each student, in addition to completing the application, will need the approval of a parent or guardian. All interested students can receive an application from their home school and should submit it through their counselor.


    Program of Studies

    The school offers a one-year exploratory experience followed by a three-year approved program.  Approximately fifty percent of the time is spent in vocational shops or laboratories; the remainder in general education and related trade courses. Trade courses offered include shop or laboratory and theory work in the following areas:


    Advertising Art and Design

    Auto Body and Fender

    Automotive Technology

    Building Construction and Maintenance

    Business Technology Applications


    Child Care and Guidance


    Diesel Technology

    Drafting and Design Technology

    Electrical Construction and Maintenance

    Electronic Technology

    Food Service

    Graphic Arts

    Health Assistant

    Heating, Ventilating & Air Conditioning

    Informational Systems Technology

    Law Enforcement Training

    Marketing Education


    Ornamental Horticulture

    Outdoor Power Equipment Technology

    Precision Metal Working

    Student Scheduling

    Counselors meet with groups of students to introduce the scheduling process, course catalog and course selection sheets. Students are encouraged to discuss this information with their parents and teachers. In most cases, students are asked to have teachers initial their course selections. Evening meetings are then held to properly inform parents regarding curricular programming, course descriptions and the selection process. Following these presentations, counselors meet with students to collect their course selection sheets. If students have questions or concerns about their selections, they may schedule a time to meet with their counselor.