Despite having a budget of more than $11 million for the Department of Education, Ohio Superintendent Paolo DeMaria decided high school graduates only need to know barely more than the basics in order to graduate.
DeMaria said that new high school graduation requirements from the Legislature did not define competency, so he searched help-wanted ads to decide the basic skills that were required, The Plain Dealer reported. Graduates will need to show competency, not proficiency, in math and English scores on Algebra I and English II tests to receive a diploma. This will start with the Class of 2023.
Competency will be defined as a minimum score of 684. Only 82 percent of the Class of 2019 scored that in Algebra and 85 percent in English.
Education advocate Ohio Excels says it helped create the new standards and that students who fail to achieve a competent score must retake the test and if they still fail they have these options:
1 College Credit Plus: Earn credit for one math and one English course through College Credit Plus.
2 Career Experience & Technical Skill: Complete two demonstrations, at least one of which must be foundational:
◦ Foundational: Proficient on three WebXams, approved industry credential (12 points), pre-apprenticeship or acceptance into an apprenticeship program
◦ Supporting: Workplace experience, WorkKeys or the OhioMeansJobs Readiness Seal
3 Military Readiness: Meet the requirements to enlist in the military, including AFQT requirements, as demonstrated by a contract with the military to enlist upon graduation.
In addition to learning only the basics, Ohio graduates will need to earn 20 credit hours in certain classes and earn two diploma “seals,” or certain skills or interests, according to the department.
The Class of 2023 requirements are only the latest new standards, the Department of Education says. The Classes of 2020 and 2021/2022 each have different standards.
– – –
Jason M. Reynolds has more than 20 years’ experience as a journalist at outlets of all sizes.