« Creeping Kudzu and Teaching Writing: the Connection | Main | New President for Math Teachers' Group Highlights Agenda »

Mich. House, Senate Back Plan to Make Algebra II Optional

Michigan high schoolers could skip a required Algebra II course with their parents' consent under a bill headed to the desk of Democratic Gov. Jennifer Granholm, reports the Detroit Free Press.

The bill won overwhelming majorities last week in both the state House and Senate.

The Free Press story explains that critics say the Algebra II mandate, added as part of changes to the statewide curriculum several years back, prompts many struggling math students to drop out of school. The bill would allow students instead to take an alternative math course, such as statistics or data analysis.

"If someone has very good math skills, then they probably should take higher-level math courses," Rep. Joel Sheltrown, a Democrat, was quoted as saying in the bill's favor. "I'm worried about those kids that don't have those skills."

The story notes that Gov. Granholm and others who championed the original Algebra II requirement have said it would raise expectations for students and better prepare them for college.

It's not clear from the story whether Gov. Granholm, a Democrat, would sign the bill. A separate article from the Associated Press did indicate that Granholm has resisted changes to the state's graduation standards.

I've left a message with the governor's press office and will post an update if I learn more.

UPDATE: I finally heard back from the governor's office. The official word from a spokeswoman was that the governor is "currently reviewing the bill."

Notice: We recently upgraded our comments. (Learn more here.) If you are logged in as a subscriber or registered user and already have a Display Name on edweek.org, you can post comments. If you do not already have a Display Name, please create one here.
Ground Rules for Posting
We encourage lively debate, but please be respectful of others. Profanity and personal attacks are prohibited. By commenting, you are agreeing to abide by our user agreement.
All comments are public.


Most Viewed on Education Week



Recent Comments

  • Linda: My problem with homework is they give too much and read more
  • Seo Article Writer: Hello I just see your site when I am searching read more
  • Car Insurance Guy: Ah!!! at last I found what I was looking for. read more
  • cyptoreopully: Hey there everyone i was just introduceing myself here im read more
  • Connie Wms: Good grief. We have gone round and round forever with read more