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Graduation changes keep schools busy

By Austin King aking@marshallnewsmessenger.com
Nov. 19, 2013 at 2:37 a.m.


With eighth grade registration set for early next year, Marshall's school district is working to ensure the local high school accommodates new guidelines set by Texas House Bill 5.

Among the changes brought about by House Bill 5 after it was passed this summer, are new rules regarding school curriculum and graduation. High schools are required to give students multiple graduation tracks, and MHS is no exception.

"As of now and in January we will have five different tracks students can choose in eighth grade," said Richele Langley, MISD director of curriculum. "Our eighth graders and parents will meet with counselors to determine their choice for high school."

The details on what will be required of schools and for student graduation are still a little fuzzy; Langley and other representatives of MISD plan to head to Region 7 Education Service Center next month to receive more information.

"More information is supposed be coming out soon," Langley said. "In December we have a group going to Region 7 to receive clarification on the graduation details of House Bill 5."

MHS plans to have its five graduation tracks (called endorsements) for students up and running for the next school year.

"Students are required to have 22 foundation credits," Langley said. "On top of that, they can choose one of our endorsements to receive four credits in the area of their choosing. They will have 26 total credits."

Endorsements offered at MHS will be Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), Arts and Humanities, Public Service and Business and Industry. The final endorsement is Multidisciplinary studies, which all schools are required to offer.

"I'm excited that we're offering our students five endorsements," Langley said. "They'll get to choose an area they're interested to receive some more credit in."

Due to the fact that House Bill 5 calls for schools to offer multiple graduation tracks by the beginning of the 2014 to 2015 school year, Langley expects a busy season at MISD in the coming months as the district works to fit within the legislature's requirements.

"We have to have it up and running next school year," she said. "January and February will be very busy as we define what MISD's plan will look like."

For more information on House Bill 5, visit Region 7's website, esc7.net.

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