House Committee Passes Bill to Increase High School Math Requirements

Apr 25, 2012

Wednesday a House education panel okayed a plan that would change math standards for middle and high school students in Illinois.

Initiated by Democratic Lieutenant Governor Sheila Simon, the measure would require the State Board of Education to develop a curriculum that includes an extra year of math in high schools. Currently only three years are required by the state, though many schools already require four years. Simon visited each of the 48 Illinois community colleges and says she repeatedly heard students lacked math skills: "Students are arriving at community colleges not ready to do college level math.  Consistent with that, employers, and manufacturing employers in particular, are saying that ... graduates of high schools are not ready for career-level math."

Simon says it's important for school districts to maintain local control, so the new math standards would be an option and not a mandate. The measure now goes to the full House.

The legislation is SB3244.