Tougher Graduation Standards? - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Tougher Graduation Standards?

September 26, 2003  -- Posted at 7:09 a.m. CDT

LITTLE ROCK, Ark.  --Graduation standards for high school students would be toughened under a new proposal by the state Education Department.

 A number of legislators are asking whether some parents should be able to allow their children to be exempt from the stricter curriculum. Department officials outlined the plan to members of the House and Senate education committees yesterday.

The plan would not need legislative approval to take effect. Education Department director Ray Simon says the proposal will go to the Education Board next month.

 If approved, the changes could be in place for the 2004-2005 school year. In addition to raising the state's current 21 required graduation courses to 22 with an extra year of math, the program requires four years of English, three years of science and three years of social studies.

Officials say the curriculum would better prepare students for college.

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