Dallas Morning News on the battle for Algebra 2 in Texas: foes say it’s not needed by “graduates entering the workforce after high school and those pursuing arts and humanities studies in college”

From the Dallas Morning News report on yesterday’s State Board of Education meeting:

Efforts to require that most Texas high school students take Algebra II under new graduation standards suffered a blow Wednesday when the chairmen of the House and Senate education committees flatly rejected the idea.

House Public Education Committee chairman Jimmie Don Aycock and Senate Education Committee chairman Dan Patrick made a surprise appearance at a State Board of Education meeting to urge that the proposal be scrapped. The lawmakers said the Legislature opposed such a requirement when it passed a sweeping curriculum and testing law earlier this year…

[State Senate Education Committee Chair] Patrick was more blunt, saying that the Senate’s decision was that not every student should be required to take Algebra II as has been proposed to the board.

“The idea that every one of 5 million students in Texas must have Algebra II to live the American dream is fool’s gold,” he said. “I don’t think [supporters] can make the case that every student must take Algebra II.”…

Backers of the requirement said it was needed to keep students on track to a college education. Opponents said the course was unnecessary for a large number of students, including graduates entering the workforce after high school and those pursuing arts and humanities studies in college.

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