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Editorial: State School Board should not dumb down education in WV

From The Wheeling News-Register:

In essence, their proposal amounts to making it easier for students to get A’s and requiring them to take fewer courses to graduate.

So, in a world where graduates of rigorous education programs have a clear advantage, we are thinking of telling our children they won’t have to work as hard for their diplomas, and they won’t have to hit the books as hard to get good grades.

That’s crazy.

Board members voted last week to put policy changes out for public comment. Among the amendments they are considering is reducing the number of credits required for high school graduation to 21, down from the current 24.

In addition, they may shift the grading scale downward. Current policy is that scores of 93-100 are required for an A. The proposal is to award top grades beginning at 90 percent.

Individual county school systems could retain more stringent standards. Boards of education in our area should do just that, regardless of what happens in Charleston.

But damage would be done by a state-level change. West Virginia, which already lags behind most states in school achievement, would get the reputation of settling for even less.

That is no way to attract businesses to our state. It also is no way to prepare our children for the future.

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