Technical diploma bill headed to full Senate

A bill that would create a career and technical diploma for high school students passed the Senate Education Committee on Wednesday and now heads to the full Indiana Senate for consideration.

The bill passed 5-4 with no amendments. The committee had heard testimony on the proposal at an earlier meeting.

Supporters say it would give students who are not headed for four-year degree programs more opportunities to prepare for the types of technical jobs that will be available in the next five years.

Jarred Howard, an assistant principal at Forest Park High School, told senators last week that an enormous change in the state’s work force now calls for an enormous change in how Hoosiers view education.

“CEOs have said they don’t care if a student has taken algebra 2 or chemistry,” he said. “They want skilled workers.”

Opponents, though, say the diploma waters down the skills that students should have when they graduate.

The bill would allow for more career and technical education classes to count toward graduation, while requiring students to take fewer credits in some traditional academic areas.

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