Lawmakers agree to compromise on graduation requirement, preserving assessments and expanding alternatives

State lawmakers have reportedly reached an agreement on graduation requirements. According to the Seattle Times,

The Washington Legislature has debated whether to place a permanent moratorium on those requirements, as House Democrats would prefer, or provide a temporary exemption — and only for the science test — as Senate Republicans have proposed.

Under the deal announced Thursday, high-school students would need to complete the language-arts and math exams as sophomores starting in 2019, according to a news release. High-school students currently take those tests in the 11th grade.

The deal also would delay the requirement that students pass a biology exam until 2021.

The News Tribune reports,

A deal struck Thursday in the Legislature would allow students in the class of 2017 and beyond to earn a high school diploma without meeting Washington’s testing requirements in biology.

Other seniors who failed standardized tests in English language arts and mathematics also could get a diploma under the new agreement. Those students would have to file an appeal to show they’re proficient in those subjects.

This is important:

The compromise would ensure the state’s testing standards for math and language arts stay in place in the future, while suspending the biology-test requirement indefinitely.

Washington state is expected to adopt a new, more comprehensive science test to replace the biology test a few years from now.

We first noted the possibility of a compromise in a blog post Tuesday

A vote on the compromise is expected next week.