Graduation requirements

More than 140,000 Ohio students are preparing to enter their senior year of high school, but for thousands of them, the year won’t end with a walk across a stage in a cap and gown. That is unless lawmakers move the graduation goal post once again.

It’s a lingering question that’s creating uncertainty for rising seniors in the state’s high schools.

Ja’Mya and Kenmore-Garfield’s Class of 2019

Sixteen-year-old Ja’Mya Goley is about a month away from starting her senior year at Kenmore-Garfield High School in Akron.

Akron Schools See a Major Boost in Graduation Rates

May 28, 2018
photo of Chad Aldis
ANDY CHOW / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

One Northeast Ohio school district is graduating students at higher rates this year than in the recent past. But education advocates say the increase isn’t necessarily something to celebrate.

In all, 93 percent of Akron City Schools’ seniors are expected to graduate this year, up from an estimated 54 percent who were on track to graduate at the beginning of the school year.

photo of Board of Education meeting
ASHTON MARRA / IDEASTREAM

The leaders of the Ohio House and Senate education committees are taking different stances on whether to extend changes to high-school graduation requirements to future classes.

The Ohio Board of Education voted Tuesday to recommend that the classes of 2019 and 2020 have the same alternative graduation options as the class of 2018. Students could choose to pass their end-of-course exams, complete a senior project, or maintain a high attendance rate, among other things.

Ohio's New Graduation Requirements May Be Illegal

Oct 19, 2017
Photo of student at desk
Elizabeth Albert / Flickr

In June, Ohio lawmakers approved a bill giving the Class of 2018 an alternative path to graduation. The move came after the state Department of Education predicted in 2016 more than a third of the class wouldn’t qualify to receive diplomas in May.

However, an education think tank is questioning whether that alternative path is acceptable under federal law.

 

photo of Ohio Department of Education building
MICHELLE FAUST / WCPN

Ohio’s high school juniors may head into their summer break uncertain about what they need to do to earn a high school diploma. At the moment, they must reach a certain score on seven end of course tests. But as State Impact Ohio’s Mark Urycki reports, that is likely to change.

A workgroup suggested to the Ohio Board of Education this week that the Class of 2018 should be allowed to use other factors like attendance, grade point average and work-study experience to graduate.

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