Oregon Drops Essential Skills Requirements to Graduate HS

EduLife Photos / shutterstock.com
EduLife Photos / shutterstock.com

Advise for all parents: if you want your children to be prepared for whatever life will bring them, don’t send them to public school in Oregon. Here, students are no longer required to have even basic proficiency in reading or math to graduate.

And no, I am not kidding.

Of course, the move to this began during the height of the COVID pandemic in 2020, when the Oregon Department of Education decided to suspend the “essential skills” requirement to graduate because of school shutdowns and online learning.

That was supposed to end in 2021, with the pandemic pretty much passed us and most schools being open again. However, the board decided to extend that suspension until 2029. Why? Well, because of racism…

According to leaders at the state’s DOE, the pressure to pass standardized tests and teacher-judged in-depth assignments to graduate are “harmful hurdles” for “historically marginalized students.”

So basically, mathematics and reading are racist…

Now, to be clear, the state has decided to continue with testing those “essential skills.” But those tests and, therefore, student’s grades on them won’t be used to determine whether they can or cannot graduate.

naturally, there are a good many parents and Oregon residents who are upset by the decision, agreeing that this will only end up hurting Oregon grads in the long run. I mean, how well do you think these “marginalized” students will do when they are accepted to college or put in a workplace where expectations are made of them if they’ve never had to even make the grade before?

Christine Drazen, a conservative and former GOP gubernatorial candidate, says that the DOE has essentially just lowered the value of an Oregon high school diploma. And for what?

Because someone, or even a couple of someones, feel that it is somehow unethical to push students to be and do their best?

Of course, this is also a state where gender pronouns and a new reading of our nation’s history are being put above those basics. So I guess this is all expected…