Rapid City district delays new graduation standards

September 1, 2018

RAPID CITY, S.D. (AP) — The Rapid City school system has decided to wait a year before implementing new state graduation standards.

Superintendent Lori Simon doesn’t want to rush the implementation, The Rapid City Journal reported.

“The state is allowing for flexibility,” Simon said, “So what we want to do is take a step back and wait for more clarifying information, as they better define what this is going to look like and develop clearer timelines, and then integrate what’s at work within our high school pathways task force. So, it’s very fluid.”

A state board updated the graduation requirements in July. The plan creates three endorsements and places more emphasis on career and technical education coursework opportunities.

Critics of the new standards say they water down curricula for a baseline diploma. Supporters say the plan provides increased flexibility.

“We all know from our own life experiences that perhaps we graduated from community college with one degree and chose another path, and that pathway was a springboard to another career area,” Simon said, who studied music performance between switching to education administration.

Simon hopes to work the new requirements into the district’s new pathways program, which would create curricula that emphasize workplace learning in clustered areas. The pathways program is being funded by a grant from the John T. Vucurevich Foundation.


Information from: Rapid City Journal, http://www.rapidcityjournal.com

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