2014 - New State Graduation Plans (HB5)

Beginning with incoming 9th grade students in 2014-15

Graduation Plans Overview Brochure

As required by HB5,Texas high school graduation plans will take on a new look beginning in 2014-15. Under the new plans, incoming ninth-grade students will choose one of five Endorsements (broad area of study) to focus on when they enter high school. DeSoto ISD has defined the Pathways and Concentrations within each Endorsement, as well as the certifications if available.

Foundation (22 credits) + Endorsement (4 credits) = DeSoto ISD Diploma (26 credits)

DeSoto ISD has built our curriculum offerings into the Endorsements plan using the subsection of Pathways and then adding defined Concentrations to drive students toward their graduation goals and college and career aspirations. Students will select their PGP based on their Endorsement, Pathway and Concentration.

Most Endorsements include several Pathways and Concentrations (see inside) and must include:

  • 1 - Adv. Math/CTE Math
  • 1 - Adv. Science/CTE Science
  • 2 - Electives


  • STEM Endorsement, STEM Pathway, Robotics Concentration with a Distinguished Level of Achievement
  • Business & Industry Endorsement, Finance Pathway,  Accountant Concentration
  • Arts & Humanities Endorsement, Theater Pathway,  Technical Theater Concentration
  • Public Service Endorsement, Health Services Pathway,  Pharmacy Technician Concentration, Pharmacy  Technician Certification

Click Here for all DeSoto ISD Endorsements, Pathways and Concentrations

Click Here for more information about House Bill 5 (HB5)

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Foundation Graduation Program?

The Foundation Graduation Program is a core set of classes in the areas of math, English, science, social studies, foreign language, fine arts, physical education and electives that all students must complete as a foundation to graduate from high school.

What is an Endorsement?

All incoming 9th grade students must choose an Endorsement plan to complete the  required 26 credits for graduation. There are five Endorsements: STEM, Business & Industry,  Public Services, Arts & Humanities, and Multidisciplinary Studies.

What is the Distinguished Level of Achievement (DLA)?

A student can earn the Distinguished Level of Achievement by completing the Foundation  Program, earning at least one Endorsement and completing Algebra II. Algebra II must be one of the four math credits and a fourth advanced science must also be earned. 

What are the higher education implications?

Foundation and Endorsement-only graduates are eligible for admission but not guaranteed.  Distinguished Level students are eligible for top 10% automatic admission to Texas  colleges and universities and eligible for financial assistance through TEXAS grant.

Which students do these changes impact?

Students entering 9th grade in 2014 (Class of 2018) must select an Endorsement. Students entering 10th, 11th and 12th grade in 2014 may elect to graduate on their current personal graduation plan (PGP) or choose to switch to one of the new PGP defined in HB5.

How will this transition happen?

In Spring 2014, staff will begin an intensive transition phase working with each student, and parents, to explain the differences in the plans and various implications. Informational meetings and individual time will be available for counselor meetings. All students will complete Career Cruising, an online plan selection program, that will be used to plan and assess each student’s progress. Current DHS Academies will phase out by 2017.

What about End-of-Course (EOC) Exams?

The Legislation reduced the number of required end-of-course exams from 15 to 5 including:  English Language Arts (ELA) I & II, Algebra I, Biology and U.S. History.