Planning Your Future

The Middle Level Program builds the foundation for high school success, and planning your educational program is one of the most important steps to a successful high school experience. The information below will help you plan for high school and beyond.

Planning for High School

High school students take rigorous courses that build the foundation for success in college, the military or the workforce. The Future Ready Core Course of Study was established by the NC State Board of Education as the minimum units required for graduation. You can view high school graduation requirements in this document or on the LCPS High School Program Planning Guide

The following pages of this guide provide additional information for your high school planning, including the University of North Carolina System Minimum Course Requirements for entrance into the 16 UNC System universities. Although you are not yet in high school, it is helpful to have an understanding of what is to come.

In the spring of your eighth grade year, you will be given the High School Program Planning Guide which outlines the entire high school program. The guide can be found at the link listed above. At that time, you will also be guided by your eighth grade teachers and school counselors in selecting courses for ninth grade. This process includes choosing your ninth grade courses and projecting your tenth, eleventh, and twelfth grade courses. When you are in ninth, tenth, and eleventh grades, your high school teachers and school counselors will continue to assist you as you choose courses for the next school year and plan for your future.

Exploring Careers

Exploring your career interests will help you with high school planning. Consider taking a career interest inventory to help you focus on what you might want to consider for a career. Knowing more about your interests and skills will help you plan for you high school experience. You can take a free interest inventory at

Future Ready Course of Study Students Entering into Ninth Grade in 2012 – 2013 and later

Courses Required State Requirements
4 sequential English credits
  • English I
  • English II
  • English III
  • English IV
4 Mathematics credits
  • Math I
  • Math II
  • Math III
  • A fourth mathematics course to be aligned with the student’s post high school plans

Note: Students seeking to complete minimum application requirements for UNC universities must successfully complete four mathematics courses, which include a mathematics course with Math III being a prerequisite.

3 Science credits
  • Earth/Environmental Science
  • Biology
  • Physical Science, Chemistry,or Physics
4 Social Studies credits
  • World History or  World History
  • Civics and Economics or Civics and Economics
  • American History I or AP US History
  • American History II or Social Studies elective course
1 Health and PE Credit Health and PE course
2 elective credits of any combination from either:
  • Career and Technical Education (CTE)
  • Art Education
  • World Languages

Note: Students seeking to complete minimum application requirements for UNC universities must complete two years of a second language

10 elective credits Any elective credit will satisfy this requirement
Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) Successful completion of cardiopulmonary resuscitation instruction
Total Credits 28

High School Courses Taken At The Middle School
Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Will the grades earned in high school courses taken in middle school appear on the high school transcript? Yes. The grade will be listed in the transcript under Grades 6, 7, or 8 with one unit of credit.
  2. Will the grade earned be included in the student’s high school grade point average (GPA)? No. Only courses taken during the high school years will be included the student’s grade point average.
  3. Are students required to take a standard exam for the course? Students taking NC Math 1 must take the NC Math 1 End of Course Test, which counts as 20% of their final grade. Students taking other high school math courses will take a teacher-made exam that counts as 20% of their final grade.

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