Minnesota has new graduation standards for math and thousands of Minnesota high schoolers aren’t going to pass them. What should the state do? Prevent them from graduating and keep them in school until they get it right? Or change the law and allow them to move on?
The current crop of seniors is the first class to graduate — maybe — under the new rules.
“The bottom line is that the majority of Minnesota’s 11th-graders are probably not going to meet the proficiency level,” Sen. Chuck Wiger, DFL-Maplewood, told the Mankato Free Press. He’s filed legislation to give the two-thirds of the students who took — and failed — the test an option to graduate with math remediation.
Not everyone likes the idea. “If we go in this direction, we’re largely taking a leap of faith at this point,” Rep. Carlos Mariani, DFL-St. Paul told MPR’s Tom Weber earlier this month. “It’s not going to be informed by any data or research. I’m not seeing the rationale behind that, and I don’t want to make a decision just to make a decision. I think we have to slow things down and explore things further.”
The trouble is the clock is ticking for the class of 2010.
Part of the problem is schools are still developing curricula for the standards that are already being employed.
“Parents don’t know this is even coming down the pipeline,” Edina School Board member Peyton Robb told a hearing at the Capitol in December. “Basically, they’re going to be faced with this result at the end of their 11th grade year. Their senior year is likely to be trashed, in large part, because of the remediation that will be needed.”
If you’re a Minnesota high school senior caught up in this, please contact me.