Indiana high school students will face new graduation requirements starting with class of 2023

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Starting with the class of 2023, Indiana high school students will face new requirements to graduate.

Wednesday, the Indiana State Board of Education voted 7-4 to approve the “Graduation Pathways,” which were previously approved by a special panel in early November.

One of the requirements would be to demonstrate employability. Getting an after school job or participating in meaningful volunteer experiences would check that off the list.

Students would also have to show they’re ready for post-secondary life by either earning an honors diploma, getting an industry certificate, doing an apprenticeship, or taking tests like the SAT, ACT or ASVAB.

Students will also still have to meet the current high school diploma standards.

The class of 2023 will be the first to face the new requirements, which are designed to give all students the skills and experiences they will need to take the next step in their educational journeys and to secure good jobs.

Dr. Byron Ernest, chairman of the Graduation Pathways Panel, said the recommendations will provide students with a “diploma plus.”

“I am excited for the opportunities these new pathways will provide Hoosier students,” said Dr. Ernest. “They will go a long way to ensure our students are truly prepared for success in whatever they choose to pursue after high school.”

At least one school superintendent urged the board not to approve the requirements. Jeffrey K. Butts, Ph.D of Wayne Township said he’s worried about how it will affect students.

“Unfortunately, I have grave concerns with the recommendations that are being presented for discussion on December 5 and for your consideration on December 6,” said Butts in a letter to the board. “The process has been discouraging.  I can’t say with any certainty how these components became part of the recommendation before you.”

Click here to read more about the recommendations.