progressive education
creative curriculum
progressive education
Graduation Requirements

In order to receive a Putney diploma, a student must fulfill the following academic requirements, as well as live up to responsibilities in all other areas of the program. Each student is expected to participate fully in the Evening Arts Program, the land-use program, Project Week, the Work Program, afternoon activities, dorm life, assemblies, and other special events where attendance is required. Camping trips are a nonacademic graduation requirement. The Putney faculty votes on each student’s eligibility for a diploma.

The academic program is rich in opportunity for intellectual exploration and discovery as well as creative expression. The courses are designed to encourage students to become authorities in their own right. Students approach the interpretation of literature, as writers do. The study of history is steeped in primary sources, and students, like historians, learn to create historical narratives, research, and interpret events. Science classes are investigative and students are encouraged to view the campus as a laboratory for discovery as well as develop an appreciation for the complexity and fragility of the environment. Math is taught as a language where phenomena can be expressed in numbers and problems solved elegantly. Spanish, French and Chinese are taught with an emphasis on speaking, writing and appreciating the opportunity to achieve a more global understanding. The arts and the cultivation of creativity and the imagination are central to an education at The Putney School. The arts also inspire our students to value discipline in pursuit of their creative vision. Embracing skills and discipline to create meaning is the approach that characterizes the entire academic program.

A diploma from The Putney School reflects four years of planned study, which will typically include 20 or more credits during the high school years. Seniors must pass all courses in the final trimester, in order to graduate. A student must earn 5 credits per year, distributed thus:

      Arts 1 credit
  English 4 credits, one credit each
year including 1 credit in the
senior year even if the student
enters senior year with 4 or more credits
  History 2.5 credits, including .5 credits
in the senior year if the
student does not enter the
senior year with 3 credits
  Language 3 credits of a living language,
normally through third level
  Mathematics 3 credits, including Algebra 2
  Science 3 credits, including 1 credit
of Biological Science and 1
credit of Physical Science
  Senior Humanities 0.5 credit (see notes in
individual courses for those
that qualify)

The minimum of 20 credits is completed through elective courses taken in the junior and senior years. In addition, students must take grade level seminars each year. See each department for further details. All students must take classes in at least four departments each year. Exceptions to or waivers of these requirements are granted only by special petition to the Educational Program Committee or its delegates.

The Putney School | Elm Lea Farm, 418 Houghton Brook Road, Putney, Vermont 05346-8675
802-387-5566 (main) | 802-387-6278 (fax) | |