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Legislature Likely to Extend Alternative Graduation Requirements

photo of Gov. John Kasich
Kasich says everyone is partly at fault for Ohio's graduation crisis.

Graduating seniors in Ohio schools are breathing a sigh of relief. For the second year in a row, Ohio lawmakers are considering delaying tougher new requirements for a high school diploma because thousands of students are in danger of not being able to graduate. 

State representative Tavia Galonski of Akron says the current alternative pathways to graduation will likely be in effect until 2022. She says this is a win for students.

“We’re halfway through the year. These kids have already been planning to operate under the original pathways that they thought were available to them last year. So it’s going to be a seamless proposal that those youths get to meet some of those alternative pathways that were effective last year. They can do that this year.”

Currently, Ohio students can choose between three pathways for graduation: pass the typical Ohio state tests, pass a workforce readiness assessment, or achieve a certain ACT or SAT score.

Gov. John Kasich weighed in on the issue and education in general.

Kasich wants to move toward more real life experiences

When asked who’s to blame – the Board of Education and the state school board, state lawmakers, teachers and school districts, parents and students – here’s Kasich’s answer:

“I think it's frankly everybody.”

Kasich says he’s been fighting to move education away from its agrarian calendar and classroom focus to what he calls real life experiences with business and technology.  But he says opposition to his proposals for teachers to job shadow with local businesses and for business leaders to be non-elected school board members was a problem.

“It's really interesting that education is an institution that is so difficult to change.”

Kasich also says people should prepare themselves for lifelong learning, and businesses should do more in house training, which he says would make for happier workforces.

Karen is a lifelong Ohioan who has served as news director at WCBE-FM, assignment editor/overnight anchor at WBNS-TV, and afternoon drive anchor/assignment editor in WTAM-AM in Cleveland. In addition to her daily reporting for Ohio’s public radio stations, she’s reported for NPR, the BBC, ABC Radio News and other news outlets. She hosts and produces the Statehouse News Bureau’s weekly TV show “The State of Ohio”, which airs on PBS stations statewide. She’s also a frequent guest on WOSU TV’s “Columbus on the Record”, a regular panelist on “The Sound of Ideas” on ideastream in Cleveland, appeared on the inaugural edition of “Face the State” on WBNS-TV and occasionally reports for “PBS Newshour”. She’s often called to moderate debates, including the Columbus Metropolitan Club’s Issue 3/legal marijuana debate and its pre-primary mayoral debate, and the City Club of Cleveland’s US Senate debate in 2012.