Pennsylvania Leadership Charter School (PALCS) serves students across the state of PA. Check out our online high school program if you or a student in your life needs a high-quality, individualized education.

We Offer a Strong Academic Program and Individual Support

As an alternative to traditional high school, we offer flexible online high school courses taught by experienced, qualified, and enthusiastic teachers. Our courses are designed to meet the academic standards set by the state, and we offer traditional courses alongside exciting electives and college-prep and Honors classes.

We encourage students to be self-directed and motivated in their studies, but we also give them resources to help them succeed, including regular teacher office hours, homework help, and guidance counseling.

We also offer a number of exciting extra-curricular activities to help students develop their interests, feel included in our community, and enjoy their online high school experience. At PALCS, students can enjoy field trips, school dances, clubs, and recurring activities with students from across Pennsylvania.

They can even pursue opportunities in the arts with our Center for Performing and Fine Arts or seize the chance to travel to another country for educational travel.

We Prepare Students for Life After High School

High school is a crucial time in which students undergo a great deal of personal development. At PALCS, we believe that this personal development should include the acquisition of critical skills that enable students to succeed. We want our students to not only graduate successfully but also to thrive as they pursue careers and further educational opportunities after high school.

To this end, our online high school curriculum is designed to help students excel academically and gain experience. We offer continuous support and encouragement as students learn communication, time-management, and collaboration skills. We also provide special programs, like our Professional Studies Program and University Scholars Program, to give a leg-up to students who are interested in a particular field or in attending university.

Watch the video below to learn more about the culture at PALCS and contact us to learn more about our exciting online high school program.

The PALCS high school department strives to inspire every child to learn and empowers them to excel. We:
  • Provide a rigorous and challenging academic program.
  • Cultivate a dynamic community where all students are prepared to enter an ever changing world.
  • Honor, embrace, and respect our diverse student population.
  • Remove the barriers to success by fostering a culture of exploration, inquiry, support, and integrity.
  • Encourage all our students to think critically, be problem solvers, and use technology to enrich their lives.

Please visit our Graduation Requirements page to learn more about what students need to graduate.


Academic courses are designed to meet all standards set by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. These courses are designed for those students who plan on entering the work force or attending community college at the conclusion of high school.


College-Prep courses are designed for a student who is college-bound. Students should be self-motivated and dedicated to be successful at this level.


Honors courses are academically rigorous courses designated for the college-bound student. In order to be successful, this level requires students to be self-disciplined and self-motivated with excellent analytical and study skills.
Following the Honors track, Advanced Placement (AP) courses require the same skill level as listed for honors courses. AP courses follow a prescribed syllabus determined by the College Board. Students are expected to take the AP exam offered in the spring semester in each subject. Enrollment in an AP course requires completion of the PALCS AP Application Form. Additional AP courses may be available through the PALCS University Scholars program; please see the University Scholars section of this catalog for more information.

Grade Placement

Students need at least five credits (including 1 credit in each core area) by the end of their 9th grade year to move to 10th grade, and 10 credits (including 2 credits in each core area) by the end of their 10th grade year to move to 11th grade. Therefore, we encourage all students to do their best in all of their academic classes.

Grade Point Average (GPA)

High school level courses receive quality points based on credit worth and final letter grade. Quality points are used to calculate the grade point average. Honors and Advanced Placement courses are weighted. Courses graded as Pass/Fail are not included in the GPA. The grading scale is available in the introductory information at the beginning of this catalog.

Class Rank

High school class rank is determined by using the grade point average of all students in a graduating class. Class rank is calculated after the first semester and again at the end of each school year.

High school students are required to either attend their virtual lessons live or view the recorded version. Each course has one virtual lesson per week. Each virtual lesson will have a corresponding graded assignment associated with the virtual lesson. This assignment must be completed whether the student attends live or views the lesson at a later time. Virtual lessons account for 10% of the student’s marking period grade. This percentage includes the completion of the virtual lesson assignment.

Teachers also host Office Hours during standard business hours, where they will be present in a virtual classroom at a scheduled time and be available to assist students with any assignment questions on an as-needed basis. PALCS offers online Homework Help after standard business hours, Sunday through Thursday nights, from 6 pm to 8 pm. Students may log in as needed and speak with a PALCS teacher.

Online, high school students can attend any of our open chats or participate in virtual clubs. In our offices, students are able to participate in recurring activities that alternate themes around holidays and fun topics. Around the state, families are welcome to attend any of the numerous field trips hosted by our teachers and parent network coordinators. Further information on PALCS activities can be found in our Academics and Engagement sections on the menu above and enrolled students should check the PALCS Network for up-to-date field trip end event listings and contact information for these activities.

PALCS offers the University Scholars Program, the Center for Performing and Fine Arts, and the Professional Studies Program. Information about all these programs can be found on their respective sections under Programs in the menu above.

PALCS recognizes that every student has different academic needs and we will attempt to accommodate these as much as possible. In addition to the high school programs mentioned above, a range of additional academic support and alternatives such as tutoring, vo-tech programs and college dual enrollment opportunities may be available to eligible students. Please note these programs may have fees associated with them. Please contact the Guidance Department for additional information.

PA Leadership Charter School is committed to providing students with the skills and knowledge to engage in a globally interconnected world. PALCS provides students with a variety of opportunities for educational travel, giving students the chance to gain first-hand experience and knowledge of other cultures. Certain travel opportunities will have an option of earning a half-credit through course work that can count toward the electives requirement for graduation.

In the past, PALCS teachers and students have enjoyed international experiences in Costa Rica, Quebec, China, and Panama. PALCS has also participated in the Disney Y.E.S. program held in Orlando, Florida. Please contact the Guidance Department for information about currently available credited and non-credited educational travel opportunities.

NCAA is an organization that establishes rules for eligibility, recruitment and scholarships for Division I and II sports at the college level. Students who wish to participate in Division III sports should contact the coaches and colleges regarding their policies on athletic participation. Although eligibility requirements have recently changed, they continue to include the successful completion of a curriculum of courses taken at the college-prep or higher level. There are no minimum requirements for GPA, SAT or ACT scores. It is important that students choose from the list of approved courses provided by the NCAA. This list can be accessed at Click the NCAA College-Bound Student-Athlete link to enter and then navigate to the Resources tab and select US Student where you will find the link for the list of NCAA courses.

It is the student’s responsibility to provide NCAA Eligibility Center with the following:

  • A completed and signed student release form and application fee
  • An official high school transcript (from all high schools attended) including junior year grades (available in September)
  • Any SAT/ACT scores sent directly to NCAA Eligibility Center (by writing the code #999 on the SAT/ACT registration form)
  • A final transcript upon graduation

High School students must also notify their guidance counselor if they intend to play NCAA sport during course selection so that the counselor can assist with placing students into NCAA approved courses. It is the student’s responsibility to be familiar with the NCAA’s eligibility requirements and to make sure that PALCS is aware of their intentions to play NCAA sports for course placement purposes.

If you have questions and want to contact NCAA directly, visit

Keystone Review

Students who have not scored proficient or higher on a Keystone Exam may be enrolled in a Keystone Review course, as required by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. Keystone Review courses are basic, supplemental courses structured to help students reach on-level standards. High school students may not opt-out of a Keystone Review course.

RTII: Response to Intervention

In addition to the Keystone Review courses, PALCS offers courses in math and reading to help students build the skills they need to be successful on Keystone Exams and in high school courses. The Reading for Success and Math for Success courses are designed to provide students with individualized instruction and targeted interventions in Math and/or Reading. Students may be assigned to one of these courses based on assessment data, classroom performance and teacher input.

The course is a requirement and will be taught by PALCS staff in a synchronous format. The course is worth 0.5 of an elective credit which can count toward a student’s general elective graduation requirement.

Special Education services are available for PALCS students. Accommodations are highly individualized on a student-by-student basis. More information is available on the PALCS Special Education page.

Need more information on High School classes?

High School Faculty