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Seal of Civic Readiness

The Seal of Civic Readiness is a formal recognition that a student has attained a high level of proficiency in terms of civic knowledge, civic skills, civic mindset, and civic experiences. The Seal of Civic Readiness distinction on a high school transcript and diploma: 

  • shows the student’s understanding of a commitment to participatory government; civic responsibility and civic values;
  • demonstrates to universities, colleges, and future employers that the student has completed an action project in civics or social justice; and
  • recognizes the value of civic engagement and scholarship.

Criteria for the Seal of Civic Readiness

In order to obtain the Seal of Civic Readiness, a student must complete all requirements for a New York State local or Regents diploma and earn a total of six points with at least two points in Civic Knowledge and at least two points in Civic Participation. Students may also earn points by completing a middle school Capstone project or a high school Capstone project.

Civic Knowledge Pts. Civic Participation Pts.
4 credits of social studies 1 High School Civics Project (limit two times during grades 9-12) 1.5
Mastery level on Social Studies Regents Exam 1.5* Service-Learning Project (minimum 25 hours) and reflective civic learning essay/presentation/product 1*
Proficiency level on Social Studies Regents Exam 1* Earned credit in an elective course that promotes civic engagement .5*
Advanced social studies course(s) .5* Middle School Capstone Project (Grades 7 and 8 are only eligible for this point) 1
Research Project 1 Extra-curricular participation or work-based learning experience (minimum 40 hours) and an essay/presentation/product .5*
    Civics Capstone Project 4

*Students may receive these points more than once.

Testing accommodations recommended in an individualized education program or section 504 Accommodations Plan must be provided for all State and districtwide assessments administered to students with disabilities, as consistent with State policy. * Students in schools with an alternate pathway for graduation approved by the Commissioner will be held to those schools' criteria.

Application Process and Guidance

The application to offer the Seal of Civic Readiness +1 Civics Pathway is now available for all districts and schools in the SED Monitoring and Vendor Performance System located within the Application Business Portal. Schools that wish to offer this pathway for the 2024-2025 school year must complete this initial application by August 1, 2024. Schools will be notified of their status on a rolling basis.