To receive a diploma from The Williams School, a student must have earned a minimum of twenty credits in the Upper School courses listed below. These are minimum requirements and do not include Co-curricular Credits; most students earn more than twenty credits.
The minimum load for any academic year is five credits; should a student be enrolled in courses totaling exactly five credits, he/ she may take a maximum of two courses in the arts. All students, however, are expected to take as full a program as they can manage. A student is considered eligible for graduation when he or she has successfully fulfilled the Upper School minimum academic and athletic requirements, and has maintained a C-minus or better average during the senior year. A failing grade in a course in the second semester of the senior year will prevent a senior from graduating.
The schedule of classes varies according to a seven-day rotation of the timetable. Unless otherwise indicated, classes meet for the full year and are worth one credit.
Minimum requirements in each discipline are as follows:
English 4 credits
one course each year
Mathematics 3 credits
study of math through 11th grade including a full credit Precalculus course or four years of math in the Upper School
- successfully completing 3 consecutive years of a modern or classical language (and a one year exposure of the alternate);
- Latin I for all students who enter Williams through the 10th grade year; Latin 7 & Latin 8 in the Middle School
- French I or Spanish I—either Spanish 7 & 8 in the Middle School or French I or Spanish I in Grade 8 or the Upper School;
- the completion of Latin I should take place as early as possible in the student’s career at Williams.
Laboratory Science 2 credits
two courses, including one biological and one physical science; all graduating seniors must have completed at least one year of science at The Williams School.
History 2 credits
Modern World in 10th grade and US History in 11th are required
Fine Arts 1 credit
Co-Curricular Credits* 2 credits/year
(completed in the Upper School)
* Involvement Requirements: Each year Upper School students will be required to earn two Co-curricular Credits (Middle School students are responsible only to earn one). While these are often achieved through participation in athletics teams (one Co-curricular Credit per season), they also can be received for participation in school activities such as the Fall Play, Spring Musical (including Pit Band), a Williams dance class, and Compchorea (with prior approval from the Athletics and Arts Departments). Only one Co-curricular Credit per year may be earned through the Fitness Center or independent athletics outside of Williams.