Oregon Bill Would Require College Credit in High School - Higher Education
Higher Education News and Jobs

Oregon Bill Would Require College Credit in High School

by Jonathan J. Cooper, Associated Press

SALEM, Ore. — The Oregon Legislature is looking at making college students out of every Oregon high-school student.

A bipartisan group of legislators has introduced a bill that would require college coursework as a condition of graduating from high school. The move would increase the number of students going to college, make their degrees more affordable and encourage students not considering college to continue in higher education, said Sen. Mark Hass, a Beaverton Democrat who is the bill’s chief sponsor.

“It represents a great play on college affordability if someone can come out of Roseburg High School with 40 credits,” Hass said Tuesday at a committee hearing for the measure. “That student saves thousands of dollars for himself and his family on the cost of a bachelor’s degree. Not only that, it helps those students have a much more productive career while they’re in high school.”

Critics say students shouldn’t be forced to take college courses if they’re not interested. Every student should have access to college-level courses if they want them, said Margaret DeLacy, a board member at the Oregon Association for Talented and Gifted, but not all students will want to.

“We believe that students are individuals, and each student’s needs should be addressed as flexibly as possible,” DeLacy told lawmakers.

The effort illustrates an enduring tension in education as the Legislature tries to improve the quality of schools while facing severe funding shortfalls.

The current draft of Senate Bill 222 would require college credit for six of the 24 high-school classes required to earn a diploma, starting with the class of 2020. It also would provide a yet-to-be-determined amount of money to help teachers get the necessary training to teach advanced-level classes.

The bill is likely to change substantially before going before the full Senate, Hass said, and the mandate for college credits could eventually be watered down or removed. But he said he’s committed to creating powerful incentives for high schools to boost the number of students earning college credits.

Last school year, more than 25,000 Oregon high-school students took dual-enrollment classes, which are taught by high-school teachers and result in simultaneous credit toward high-school and college graduation requirements. Others earned college credit through Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate programs.

Offering college-level courses can be especially tough in small and rural school districts, where teachers often cover several subjects, said Sen. Arnie Roblan, a Coos Bay Democrat and former high-school principal. Dual-credit courses can only be taught by teachers with a master’s degree in the subject they’re teaching.

RELATED ARTICLES >>
DACA Student Gets MBA, Eyes Entrepreneurship Despite the obstacles Jorge Mendez Barcelo faced as an immigrant from Mexico, who arrived in the United States in 2007 at the age of 15, he was able to earn his master’s degree in business administration and establish his own business. Woodbury U...
New Book Examines How Scholar-Practitioner Advanced Equity in Student Affairs When some of the nation’s top scholars decided to pen a book examining the life of Dr. Melvin C. Terrell and his contributions to the field of student affairs, Terrell knew that was something special. But then again, the life of the former Vice Pr...
Doctor Accused of Abuse at Ohio State Potentially Linked to Other Universities COLUMBUS, Ohio – A now-dead doctor accused of sexual misconduct by former student athletes at Ohio State University said he acted as a team physician at other universities, most of which won't say if they are reviewing those connections or whether...
Health Insurance Remains an Issue for Students and Recent Grads The summer months and the period following graduation can leave some college students and recent graduates scrambling to find affordable, year-round health insurance if they lack coverage under a school or parent’s health plan. Dr. Linda Blumberg...
Semantic Tags:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *