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A College-Prep, Independent Day
School for Grades 8-12

Graduation Requirements

Our graduation requirements help develop creative, independent thinkers. Students have guidance throughout their time at York to help them choose courses that broaden and deepen their knowledge and interests. Our program meets or exceeds the requirements of the University of California system; graduates of York are eligible for admission at the most selective colleges and universities. All students receive customized schedules based on their interests and goals.

Students must demonstrate
A.  mastery of specific academic subjects
B. completion of the Service Learning requirement
C. ensemble participation, and
D. satisfactory participation in the Health & Fitness program

Academic Requirements: (grades 9-12)

  • English, four years
  • Mathematics, three years (through Junior Year), including Algebra II
  • Modern Language, completion of 3rd year level (for students entering grades 8 or 9)
  • History, three years (World History I and II, and US History)
  • Laboratory Science, three years, including Biology, Chemistry & Physics
  • Technology Information Literacy, one year
  • Studio Art - Foundation, one year’s equivalent
  • Latin 1
  • U.C. Visual or Performing Arts (UCVPA), one credit
A minimum of five courses are required each year. Each course should be worth 10 units or the equivalent, as determined by the Academic Dean and Curriculum Committee.

Service Learning

York students have the opportunity to bring fun, collaboration, hard work, intelligence, as well as York’s core values: honesty, respect, responsibility, and compassion, to their varied volunteer roles; helping the community grow closer and stronger. The goal of the service learning program is to have students adopt service as part of their identity: making positive contributions to others, to communities, and to the world part of who they are as productive citizens. As a graduation requirement, York expects each student to complete 10 hours of service learning each school year (excluding the eighth grade). Service is intentionally not cumulative, meaning one cannot simply meet the graduation requirement by volunteering 40 hours in one academic year. Sustained engagement with the community over time is important in affecting change, both within individuals and larger systems.  While 10 hours is required, over 80% of the students do significantly more volunteering.

York defines “service learning” as any voluntary service in which students are asked to do more than provide manpower for a non-profit organization or social cause. Typically, service learning extends curricular goals by doing service in the community, mutually benefiting the organization or audience and the student.  Students should be expanding their comfort zones by engaging in personally significant and challenging service, whether developing leadership capacity, intrapersonal communication skills, or organization abilities and other relevant expertise.



  • Learning about innovative approaches to community development while helping people in need in Guanajuato, Mexico on a CIEE Global Navigator Service & Leadership summer experience
  • Leading elementary students in their week-long outdoor science experiences with Santa Cruz County Outdoor Science School
  • Building a library at a school in rural India, by partnering with a local library to collect books and donations
  • After volunteering with horses one year and with foster students in another, developing and fundraising for a week-long equine experience for foster children at Star Riders
  • Utilizing Spanish language skills acquired at York to engage with and read books to elementary students in an afterschool program with City of Seaside Parks and Recreation
  • Deepening one’s ocean conservation knowledge, and then adopting and communicating conservation messages to guests and others through the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Teen Conservation Leaders program
  • Building a tiny home, and then donating that home to an organization that is addressing homelessness in Monterey County


Each student will, for each year in Grades 9 - 12:

  • Complete a minimum of 10 hours of service learning
  • Verify those hours from a service supervisor (and all other hours students volunteer)
  • Reflect upon why this service-learning was important to the community / audience and to themselves

Ensemble Participation

Students learn a great deal about themselves through participation in extracurricular activities and benefit from the experience of committing themselves to a group endeavor. As such, we encourage students to engage in learning outside the classroom through involvement in performing arts and athletic programs. Students are required to participate in of the following:

  • choir, band or orchestra for one year
  • a role in a school play
  • a varsity level sport
Students with significant commitments to performance ensembles or athletic activities not offered by York, or who participate for at least three years in a non-league sport offered by the School may apply for a waiver of this requirement. In all cases, a decision by the Academic Dean and the Director of Music, the Director of Theatre, or the Athletic Director is required.

Health & Fitness

Improving students’ physical well being and promoting lifelong fitness is an important part our program. Each year, students have three ways to fulfill this year-long requirement:

  1. Participate in a Health & Fitness Activity
  2. Play an interscholastic team sport (Grades 9-12)
  3. Participate in an Independent Activity with approval
York School
Find Us 9501 York Road Monterey, California 93940

York School is committed to equal opportunity in educational programs, employment and campus life. The School does not discriminate on the basis of age, ancestry, color, disability, gender, marital status, national origin, parental status, race, religion, sexual orientation, or veteran status in any access to and treatment in School programs and activities.

We inspire and prepare
a diverse community of
creative, independent thinkers.

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