Ohio Overhauling Senior Year?

Posted on May 21, 2012 by


According to an article at Cleveland.com, Ohio’s top education leaders want to overhaul 12th grade so students can be involved in technical training, apprenticeships, and college classes.

“We want to have no distinction between the senior year of high school and the first year of college,” aid Stan Heffner, the Superintendent of the Ohio Department of Education, said at a meeting of the Ohio Board of Regents. “A high school senior year is in many ways a wasteland. They have passed the Ohio Graduation Tests and tests to get into college. Wouldn’t it be something to have them meshed together? We’re pretty excited about this.”

According to a 2001 report by a commission appointed by the U.S. Department of Education, for at least a decade, educators across the country have discussed ways to alter the senior year,

“I understand why someone would seek a solution for senior slacking. Removing the senior year so a student may enter college early would possibly shift the slacking to junior year,” said FAHS Physics teacher Scott McCullough. “There are plenty of good classes for students to take in their senior year, but too many students choose an easy route. The only solution to poor school and student performance is that more people need to value an education.”

“It is helpful if they create a more seamless bridge between high school and college,” Cleveland State University President Ronald Berkman said. “You go through a deceleration in your senior year, then have to accelerate when you go to college.”

“I like the idea of overhauling twelfth grade to get ready for college. I fee,l if we are trained for what we want to do in college, it would help a lot,” FAHS junior Zach Bubbenmoyer said. “It would also prepare us for the ‘real world.’”

“Instead of K-12, [communities should] start funding at age 4 and fund preschool through grade 11,” Joseph Regano, the Superintendent of Solon Schools, in Solon, Ohio, said. “This is a way to do [preschool] at no cost. And students who do not attend preschool are in disadvantaged neighborhoods. Honestly, kids are more mature today and they have learned at a quicker rate and are ready to roll. We could get them graduated.”

“I am sure that some Pennsylvania legislators would try and introduce some changes to our education system regarding 12th grade,” McCullough said. “Their underlying cause would be to save money. Sending 16- and 17-year-olds off to college is too early for many students. Those who didn’t go on to school would have extremely limited employment options.”

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