Bill would make high schools more accountable for graduates - - The News for South Mississippi

Bill would make high schools more accountable for graduates

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JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

The bill, currently moving through the legislature, is only four pages long, but would shift some big financial responsibilities. Its goal is to make sure high school graduates are ready for college academics.

A big reason is because state community colleges and the Institutions of Higher Learning spend about $37 million a year for remedial courses.

"That is unacceptable," said Sen. Nancy Collins, a republican from Tupelo.

Collins authored the bill, which would pass the cost of any remediational courses for college freshmen back to the high school from which they came. By passing the cost to the high schools, Collins says it'll put more accountability on schools.

"High school students, when they get a diploma, and when they've had a track to go to college, they ought to be able to go to college. They should not have remediation," said Collins.

As Governor Phil Bryant pushes education reform in the state, with legislation for charter schools and teacher merit pay, he says the K-12 system needs to make sure students are ready for the next level before handing out a diploma.

"There is a responsibility that the high schools have when the graduate a child to say that child should be able to read at a community college or IHL level so there should be some accountability," said Bryant.

As the bill stands now, if passed, would be in place for the next academic year beginning in August.

"When a student is not achieving and when we has told a counselor that he is on a track to go to college then that school needs to make sure he can go to college and he can achieve in college," said Collins.

The bill has now been referred to the senate universities and colleges committee as well as the appropriations committee. It would need a majority vote to pass.

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