More backlash bills filed: Senator Hays and Representative Nelson file companion bills to establish “career diploma” that drops Algebra 2 and physical science requirements

Senator Alan Hays and Representative Bryan Nelson have filed companion bills (SB 1830 and HB 1249) to establish a “career diploma” that drops Algebra 2 and the physical science (chemistry/physics) requirements for graduation.  The three-science course requirement, the biology requirement and the biology end-of-course test remain.

Let’s try this again:

Many educators and parents worry that the new high school graduation requirements signed into law last spring, especially the requirements to pass Algebra 2 and either Chemistry 1 or Physics 1, will keep many non-college bound students from graduating.  At first blush, the bills filed by Senator Hays and Representative Nelson seem to address these concerns.

But the leadership of the Florida Department of Education already solved this problem last summer by authorizing school districts to use “Principles of Technology” to satisfy the “chemistry or physics” requirement for graduation.  In other words, the concerns that parents and educators have expressed about keeping hard-working non-college bound students from graduating are unfounded.

In this context, the companion bills are simply statements by Senator Hays and Representative Nelson that non-college bound students do not need to be scientifically literate.

Senator Hays and Representative Nelson should withdraw their bills.

Sorry for the repetition.  The legislation to stupidize Florida’s high school students is moving faster than I can read.

(I know, I know – “stupidize” is not a word.  But it should be.)

Have I mentioned recently that Florida placed 50th in the nation last year on the ACT Science Section, ahead of only Mississippi (them again!).  The ACT Science Section is the broadest available measure of scientific literacy among America’s high school seniors.

But here in Florida, we will not settle!  We will not settle for 50th!  That’s not what Florida is about!  We want to be…51st!  We salute Senators Alexander and Hays for giving us ways to challenge Mississippi for that 51st position!!

[Sorry, it's been a long week and I'm a bit punchy.]

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4 Responses to More backlash bills filed: Senator Hays and Representative Nelson file companion bills to establish “career diploma” that drops Algebra 2 and physical science requirements

  1. Doc Carr says:

    Time will tell if companies will relocate to Florida based on the sales pitch “our taxes are low because our schools are worse than Mississippi’s”. It might work for corporate headquarters whose executives can send their kids to private schools.

    I am, however, impressed that Governor Scott remains consistently against the ideas put forth by both former Governor Jeb! and President Obama, just as he promised in the campaign.

  2. Bob Calder says:

    Doc; Governor Scott plans to subsidize the tuition of private school attendees, so yes, it might work. But you’ve got to agree it’s a brilliant idea to cut educational requirements at the same time you cut funding to education. The legislature has failed so may times to act sensibly and I applaud them for not going in opposite directions simultaneously for once. Less money AND less education. It’s a lose-lose. Let’s hope Governor Scott keeps moving all the affairs of the state of Florida in this direction.

  3. Pingback: Senate PreK-12 Chair Wise files antievolution bill « Bridge to Tomorrow

  4. Pingback: OPPAGA, Texas and the “career diploma” proposal « Bridge to Tomorrow

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