Fear Over Effects Of New Graduation Standards Has Officials Scrambling

Apr 10, 2017

The Class of 2018 in Ohio’s high schools will be the first to choose their route to graduation – pass some state tests, take a college entrance exam or earn an industry credential. But new numbers show as many as one-third of those students won’t be able to get their diplomas when those new graduation standards take effect next year. That has the state’s education leaders scrambling to make changes.

The Ohio Department of Education’s new figures show some districts and charter schools could see graduation rates plummet by as much as 70 percent in some cases because kids won’t be able to get 18 points on seven state tests, to achieve a minimum score on a college entrance exam or get an industry credential. Damon Asbury with the Ohio School Boards Association says the state has changed the standards during their time in school, and that could be a reason for poor performance in low-income and minority-dominated schools.

“Well, I think, in general, it’s a mess.”

The state superintendent is expected to offer students other graduation options. But lawmakers would have to approve that, and some have indicated they don’t want the requirements lowered.