CHEYENNE, Wyo. — Wyoming high school students will now be able to pass a course assessment in lieu of receiving a passing grade as part of a number of changes the State Board of Education has made to graduation requirements.
The board on Friday voted to approve a revised set of state high school graduation requirements, which must be approved by Gov. Matt Mead.
The board's action follows ongoing legislative efforts to enact education reforms that aim to improve student academic performance.
The proposed requirements offer different types of assessment systems districts may choose to use to measure student achievement and allow districts to set minimum performance level requirements on district assessments for students to graduate.
"Successful performance on a district-approved competency-based assessment may be used in lieu of a passing grade in order for a district to determine that a student has successfully completed one or more of the components that are included within the state-established standards for graduation," the proposed rules state.
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In order to graduate, students must complete four years of English, three years of math, three years of science and three years of social studies.
Other proposed changes to the graduation requirements include requiring each student to pass a test on the U.S. and Wyoming constitutions and assuring that students receive credit for any dual enrollment courses taken at a college.
State Board of Education Chairman Pete Gosar said the board was careful not to impose new graduation requirements that are onerous to local school districts.
"Having assurances but not making them too onerous has been a fine needle to thread," Gosar said.
While the new requirements will take effect immediately if Mead approves them, they will be subject to public comment. The state board will then review the public comment to determine if any changes still should be made.