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Mabton considers more flexibility in high school class scheduling

MABTON - The Mabton School Board met this past Wednesday evening to discuss Mabton High School's graduation requirements and the lack of flexibility they cause.

"Here's the problem," said Supt. Sandra Pasiero-Davis, "Mabton High School has adopted college entry level graduation requirements and a six-period day, which means the students need 24 credits to graduate. The state of Washington only requires 19.

"We're asking our kids to have more; we're asking our kids to be university eligible.

"By having a six period day and 24 credits to graduate...that leaves a student only two hours over the course of four years to create (his or her) own interests."

Pasiero-Davis said that what it amounts to is limited opportunities for students to do any remediation work if they should need it, and limited opportunities to build non-core course work.

For example, if a student fails the WASL, it's very difficult for the student to work a WASL prep class into his or her schedule.

Another problem that arises is if a student fails a class, like math or history, and doesn't attend summer school, that student couldn't graduate because there's no time to make it up.

"We have virtually no flexibility in our structure," she said.

The school board agreed to let Mabton High School Principal Jay Tyus and his leadership team explore options for a pilot program that they hope to implement by spring--a pilot program that will still promote high standards but allow for more flexibility. One option being considered is a seven-period rotation schedule.

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