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Garfield School Profile

James A. Garfield High School Profile

Principal: Dr. Tarance Hart
Four-year Public High School
Grades 9-12, Semester schedule
Garfield High School Code: 481115

Phone: 206-252-2304
Fax: 206-252-2271

Contact your student’s Counselor

The Seattle Public Schools (SPS) has an 11-Point Grading Scale:

  • A: 93-100%
  • A-: 90-92%
  • B+: 87-89%
  • B: 83-86%
  • B-: 80-82%
  • C+: 77-70%
  • C-: 70-72%
  • D+: 67-69%
  • D: 60-66%
  • E: below 60%

Regular courses will be graded on a 4.0 scale.

Honors courses will be graded on a 4.5 grade scale when calculating class rank.

Students who take Running Start or Advanced Placement courses will be ranked according to a 5.0 grade scale in those courses when calculating class rank (i.e. an “A” grade in AP World History will count as a 5.0 GPA in calculating the class rank of the student).

Garfield is an urban four-year high school with a culturally diverse student body and a reputation for rigorous college preparatory classes. About 1,700 students attend the school.

Of the approximately 398 who graduated last year, 69 percent plan to attend four-year colleges and 22 percent plan to attend two-year colleges. School highlights include:

  • Numerous Advanced Placement (AP) classes
  • Nationally recognized performing arts program
  • Award-winning student newspaper and a comprehensive outdoor education program

Garfield consistently has more National Merit finalists than any other public high school in Seattle. Approximately 25% of each grade level at Garfield is made up of students from the Highly Capable program – Seattle Public Schools’ program for academically gifted students.

Advanced Placement

Garfield students make up more than 70% of the SPS students who take Advanced Placement exams. The school offers 18 AP courses, as well as 9 honors courses. Students following the selective-college admissions curriculum typically complete three or four AP classes by the end of their junior year.

Performing Arts

The Performing Arts Department provides rich opportunities for students interested in musical performance including marching band, jazz ensemble, orchestra, choir, vocal jazz and drama. The jazz ensemble and symphonic orchestra have earned national and international recognitions. Both have traveled extensively to competitions and festivals, and regularly tour overseas.

Running Start

This program provides eligible junior and senior students the opportunity to attend a community college and earn high school and college credits simultaneously.

Distribution of 2019 Graduates SAT Scores

Score: 700-800
ERW: 109
Math: 82

Score: 600-690
ERW: 123
Math: 110

Score: 500-590
ERW: 56
Math: 86

Score: 400-490
ERW: 77
Math: 69

Score: MEAN
ERW: 597
Math: 580

PSAT / National Merit Results

Category: Finalists
# Students 2018-19: 13
# Students 2019-20: N/A

Category: Semi-Finalists
# Students 2018-19: 13
# Students 2019-20: 9

Category: Hispanic Recognition
# Students 2018-19: 1
# Students 2019-20: N/A

Graduation Requirements (Class of 2020)

All students must meet the following requirements to graduate:

  • American Government – 1 semester
  • Fine Arts – 2 semesters
  • Health – 1 semester
  • Language Arts – 8 semesters
  • Mathematics – 6 semesters
  • Occupational Education – 3 semesters
  • Physical Education – 3 semesters
  • Science – 4 semesters
  • US History – 2 semesters
  • World History – 3 semesters
  • Electives – 9 semesters
  • Community Service Learning, 60 hours
  • Pass the state required exams or Alt. Pathway
  • High School and Beyond Plan

World Languages

Language: French
Levels Offered: 4
AP Level: Yes

Language: Japanese
Levels Offered: 3
AP Level: Yes

Language: Latin
Levels Offered: 4
AP Level: Yes

Language: Spanish
Levels Offered: 6
AP Level: Yes

Honors Courses

The following are offered at Garfield:


  • US History 11AH, 11BH
  • World History 1H, 2H

Language Arts:

  • Intro to Lit (9th) AH, BH
  • World Lit (10th) AH, BH


  • Geometry AH, BH
  • Algebra 2 AH, BH
  • Pre-Calculus AH, BH


  • Biology AH, BH
  • Physics 1H, 2H
Exam# of StudentsScore 1Score 2Score 3Score 4Score 5
Calculus AB102515201844
Calculus BC4704121318
Chinese Language and Culture100001
Computer Science A330141018
English Language & Comp151113285257
English Literature & Comp4805111022
Environmental Science621432133
French Language and Culture1808523
Japanese Lang. and Culture1941932
Physics C – Mechanics461251127
Spanish Language and Culture5813162117
Studio Art 2 D Design Portfolio1101343
Studio Art Drawing Portfolio600123
US Government & Politics551112779
US History91210152836
World History257738757364