Granholm calls for rigorous curriculum

Published 11:47 pm Wednesday, March 8, 2006

By Staff
LANSING - Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today repeated her call for a rigorous high school curriculum in Michigan, calling it an essential step in building a diverse economy that will keep kids in the state. The Governor made her remarks at a roundtable at Pinewood Middle School in Kentwood where she talked with students, parents, and educators about her proposal.
Granholm called for new curriculum requirements last year, and the State Board of Education presented their recommendations in December 2005.
The new curriculum requirements proposed would help establish a highly educated, highly skilled workforce by requiring that all students complete four credits of math and English language arts, three credits of science and social studies, two credits in foreign language, and credits in health and art.
In addition, students would be required to complete an online learning experience.
Currently, Michigan high school students are required to complete only a one semester civics course in order to graduate.
Since the State Board of Education's proposal, the Governor has consistently urged the Legislature to act quickly to ensure that the curriculum is in place for the new school year in September.
Last week, the Michigan House of Representatives adopted a proposal that included much of the state board's proposal, but also included a dangerous opt-out provision that would allow students to choose not to complete the new curriculum. The Governor has called for higher standards as the debate over the issue moves to the Senate.
“Not only are we raising the bar for students in Michigan, but we are providing schools with the resources they need to help students achieve,” said Granholm.
In addition to calling for a new rigorous high school curriculum, Granholm recently proposed a budget for the upcoming school year that pushes education funding to its highest levels ever.
The Governor proposed increasing per pupil funding by $200, proposed a new after school math and science program for middle schools to ensure that students are prepared for a rigorous high school curriculum, and proposed a significant expansion of early childhood education services to get young students started in the right direction.