Ninth Through Twelfth Grade
The Pivotal Years: Ninth through Twelfth Grade
High school is the final transition into adulthood and the world of work as students begin separating from parents and exploring and defining their independence. Students are deciding who they are, what they do well, and what they will do when they graduate. During these adolescent years, students are evaluating their strengths, skills and abilities. The biggest influence is their peer group. They are searching for a place to belong and rely on peer acceptance and feedback. They face increased pressures regarding risk behaviors involving sex, alcohol and drugs while exploring the boundaries of more acceptable behavior and mature, meaningful relationships. They need guidance in making concrete and compounded decisions. They must deal with academic pressures as they face high-stakes testing, the challenges of college admissions, the scholarship and financial aid application process and entrance into a competitive job market. American School Counselors Association
Did you know?
Your teens baffling behaviors may not be due to hormones but due to typical brain development. Studies have shown that brains continue to mature and develop throughout childhood and adolescence and well into early adulthood.
Only 25 percent of 17- to 24-year-olds would qualify to serve in the military. The rest cannot meet physical, mental or behavioral standards for service—standards that are similar to those many businesses use in hiring.
In 2006, teens spent an average of 6 ½ hours a day plugged in to technology, whereas in 2011, that number almost doubled, to 11 ½ hours a day.
Students at the high school level are in the career preparedness phase. Students are taking courses that will lead to either college entry or a career. Students and parents can learn more about the 16 career clusters at South Carolina ETV.
South Carolina High School Graduation Requirements - A student must earn 24 units of credit in various fields of study in order to graduate from high school in the state of South Carolina.
College admissions requirements will vary from what is required to graduate from a public South Carolina high school. At a minimum, College Preparatory Coursework is required for four-year institutions in South Carolina. However, you MUST refer to your college of choice to review the admissions requirements.
Spartanburg County School Districts
Spartanburg School District One – (864) 472-4117
Inman/Landrum/Campobello and Northwest County
Spartanburg School District Two – (864) 578-0128
Boiling Springs/Chesnee and Northeast County
Spartanburg School District Three – (864) 279-6000
Cowpens/Pacolet and East Central County
Spartanburg School District Four – (864) 476-3186
Woodruff and Southwest County
Spartanburg School District Five – (864) 949-2350
Lyman/Duncan/Wellford and Central West County
Spartanburg School District Six – (864) 576-4212
Westside Spartanburg City and Central County
Spartanburg School District Seven – (864) 594-4400
Central and Eastside Spartanburg City
How to obtain information and/or assistance
- Teachers are in contact with students for at least 7 hours of the day. Your collaboration and partnership in the education of your child is paramount to your child reaching their full potential in the classroom. Keeping the lines of communication open will assist parents in supplementing what is being taught in the classroom or identifying problems a student may encounter. Your child’s teacher can assist in making sure the accelerated student is challenged or provide remedial help for the student who struggles.
- Who to contact if problems exist:
- Your child’s teacher. Many teachers will provide their contact information at the beginning of the year. Please keep that information handy. You can always call the school directly should you need to speak with a teacher or set up a conference.
- The school counselor is a great resource for parents. Counselors are knowledgeable about resources in the community that can assist with academic, social, or familial concerns. Counselors are also trained to do school related one-on-one or group counseling.
- Your healthcare provider is another great resource if problems arise in the school setting. Physiological or psychological problems that are best diagnosed by a physician may be the cause of difficulty in a classroom setting.
- At most high schools, there are a wealth of clubs and activities to become involved with. Encourage your teen to get involved with volunteerism or an extracurricular activity that explores an interest, career goal, or talent. It is a great way to meet friends and to build their resume!
Out of School Time
Today, most parents work outside the home, many because of economic necessity. They struggle with the constant pressure of being valuable employees and responsible parents. Experts estimate that at least 8 million “latchkey” children come home to empty houses. Potentially children are left unsupervised before/after school and during days out of school.
The hours from 2 to 8p.m. are the peak time for juvenile crime and victimization, and the time period when teens ages 16-17 are most likely to be involved in a car crash. Also, youth left unsupervised for a certain number of hours per week are more likely to be sexually active, and at risk for sexually transmitted diseases. Participation in after school programs gets children and youth off the streets, under supervision, and potentially prevents some risky behaviors. But beyond offering a safe haven, research and evaluation studies have demonstrated that the programs can have a positive effect on a range of prevention outcomes, such as avoidance of drug and alcohol use, decreases in delinquency and violent behavior, increased knowledge of safe sex, avoidance of sexual activity, and reduction in juvenile crime.
Please also consult your child’s high school for clubs, sports and activities outside of school hours.
General growth, development and educational information about the adolescence is contained in a publication by the National Institute of Health.
The high school years require the attention of both the student and the parent as the student makes their final push towards adulthood. To learn more about the academic, emotional, and developmental stages of a high school student, click here.
The American Academy of Pediatrics and the Child Study Center of NYU Langone Medical Center offer information about latch key children and how to make an informed decision about your child’s readiness to be home alone.
Has your child had difficulty with a subject that you don’t quite understand? You may be able to search for homework or test prep help at Khan Academy.
A convenient list of South Carolina Colleges and Universities
Paying for college can be a source of anxiety for families. South Carolina has several scholarships for students who wish to attend school within the state.
Have questions about college or career searches, scholarships, taking a self-assessment, or obtaining information about the SAT/ACT? Visit South Carolina Can Go as a resource for tips and ideas.
Sites to visit for more information about college admissions testing and test prep:
Sites to visit for information on financial aid and scholarships:
Sites to visit for college and career searches:
Sites to visit for parenting tips, please visit:
Sites for information about getting your teen involved in the community through activities or volunteerism: