Reducing the dubious value of a diploma

Some school systems in West Virginia offer reasonably good education to students. Others leave much to be desired.

Yet state Board of Education members are considering a plan to, in officials’ word, provide more “flexibility.” For what? More mediocrity?

Public high school students in our state are required to earn 22 credits to graduate. That is down from 24 a couple of years ago.

But state Department of Education officials think the number of mandated courses should be decreased to 10, leaving 12 for electives. Of the 10, just two math credits, two in science, two in English, two in social studies and one each in physical education and health would be required.

That would reduce the already dubious value of a diploma. A 2017 report on two-year colleges in the state noted that about 30% of students entering them require remedial classes in English or math.

More “flexibility” may benefit some students. It would be a license for more than a few school districts to hand out even more diplomas to under-educated students.


Today's breaking news and more in your inbox

I'm interested in (please check all that apply)