+36 votes
in General Factchecking by Genius (38.8k points)

Oregon governor signs new law allowing students to graduate without proving they can read, write, or do math.  

by Novice (750 points)
This claim is true. When I was in high school the rules were a little different so I had to do some research to verify the details of test taking. The confusion must have been from changes in the Senate office and other positions in the government, the fact of the matter is that students have to meet a standardized level of reading, writing, and math to graduate.
by Newbie (480 points)
+1
This claim is very true. Although it has struck a lot of attention about having "dumber" seniors,. When COVID struck in March of 2020 standardized testing was suspended. As many colleges do not require the SAT or ACT anymore it was not as needed. People worry that the students will not be as smart and it will be a lot easier to graduate but Oregon says "it will not mean anything less to graduate" and say "You still need all 24 credits". After Bill 744 was signed it is allowing them to conduct researching about graduation rates. Although it sounds a little crazy, this claim is true.

https://app.7shifts.com/page/calendar/schedule/12266/a1674249611756d591b91786337329f8?u=2643551
by Novice (550 points)
This claim is true, researching the new bill made by the Governor of Oregon was entered to rewrite the graduation requirements being able to read and write is not necessary anymore. This page goes in-depth into why lowering the expectations for children and teens is better and more advantageous. https://www.opb.org/article/2021/09/20/examining-oregon-decision-to-drop-high-school-essential-skill-requirements/
by Apprentice (1.2k points)
Hello! I think your fact-check could use a little more credibility to be accurate. I appreciate that you are a first-hand source, but I think you should have included some sort of article as evidence for your claim. For example, this article from OPB includes information about the new Oregon policy that I think could have been useful in your response.

https://www.opb.org/article/2021/09/20/examining-oregon-decision-to-drop-high-school-essential-skill-requirements/

21 Answers

+1 vote
by Novice (550 points)

The claim that Oregon Governor Kate Brown signed a law allowing students to graduate without proving they can read, write, or do math is partially true but lacks nuance. Senate Bill 744, signed into law on July 14, 2023, suspends the requirement for students to show proficiency in reading, writing, and math for the next five years. However, the suspension of these requirements is not intended to waive academic standards but rather to allow time for the state to develop new standards. The decision to suspend proficiency requirements was met with criticism from Republicans who argued it as a lowering of academic standards. Democrats, however, supported the move, emphasizing the need for fair graduation standards, particularly for marginalized communities. It's important to note that the lack of transparency surrounding the bill-signing process was due in part to technical issues and not necessarily an intentional omission by the Governor's office. Additionally, the new requirements, once established, would not affect students already in high school, meaning the impact wouldn't be felt until the class of 2027 at the earliest. Therefore, while the claim holds truth regarding the suspension of proficiency requirements, it oversimplifies the broader context and intentions behind the legislative decision.

https://www.oregonlive.com/politics/2021/08/gov-kate-brown-signed-a-law-to-allow-oregon-students-to-graduate-without-proving-they-can-write-or-do-math-she-doesnt-want-to-talk-about-it.html#:~:text=12%3A42%20p.m.-,Gov.,order%20to%20receive%20a%20diploma.

True
+1 vote
by Champion (13.1k points)

This statement is true. The new Oregon law is designed to rethink education standards. Governor Kate Brown signed Senate Bill 744 and The Oregon Department of Education has said law will allow the state to develop more equitable graduation requirements. Department spokesperson Marc Siegel said that, "certainly does not remove any requirements that Oregon students learn essential skills." Students who failed to demonstrate proficiency in the essential skills will not be required to make up for it in your senior year (New York Post).

True
0 votes
by Novice (750 points)
This claim is correct. An Oregon high school diploma doesn't guarantee that the recipient can read, write, or do math at a high school proficiency. According to an article written by Oregon Public Broadcasting, the Oregon Department of Education decided that it is an "opportunity" to reset after the pandemic. In addition, according to Senate Bill 744, the requirement for Essential Learning Skills has been suspended. They intend "to reduce disparities and to ensure that every student will be on track to earn one of the high school diplomas." Although this new rule makes it easier for high school students to graduate, it's been a controversy because it takes away the value of a high school diploma. According to an article published in The Oregonian, this new law will be especially harmful to students of color who "ended up having to take intensive senior-year writing and math classes to prove they deserved a diploma." But despite all the efforts, the diplomas "just won’t be used to determine whether a student has the skills necessary to graduate."

Sources:

https://thepostmillennial.com/oregon-governor-signs-new-law-allowing-students-to-graduate-without-proving-they-can-read-write-or-do-math

https://olis.oregonlegislature.gov/liz/2021R1/Downloads/MeasureDocument/SB744/Enrolled

https://www.opb.org/article/2021/09/20/examining-oregon-decision-to-drop-high-school-essential-skill-requirements/
True
0 votes
by Novice (620 points)
This claim is entirely misleading. In order to graduate with a diploma students do need to prove their ability to read, write, and do math. The Senate Bill 744 was signed by Oregon Governor Kate Brown which states that "[The school] shall provide recommendations for alternative methods for students to demonstrate proficiency in skills or academic content areas." This Bill is an attempt to reduce the educational disparities in order to improve the recognized "inequitably [of] different student populations." Further, the regulations for at which level of reading, writing, and math skills is dependent on each state's requirements. According to the Oregon Department of Education's overview and explanation of Senate Bill 744, students must take 4 years of language arts, assessments in writing and math, and earn passing grades in 24 credits.

https://www.oregon.gov/ode/students-and-family/OregonDiploma/Documents/SB744%201-page%20Resource.pdf

https://olis.oregonlegislature.gov/liz/2021R1/Downloads/MeasureDocument/SB744/Enrolled
Exaggerated/ Misleading
0 votes
by Apprentice (1.3k points)

This claim is slightly true.

Gov. Kate Brown signed senate Bill 744 which suspends a requirement that Oregon students have to show proficiency in "Essential Learning Skills" aka reading, writing, and mathematics (according to Oregon.gov) to graduate.

The claim fails to mention that it doesn't remove this requirement but instead allows students to graduate without passing several standardized tests in the essential areas. Oregonian high school students still must obtain at least 24 credits, including in English, mathematics, and science classes, to get their diplomas. 

Overall the bill changes/requires 3 things:

- It suspends Essential Learning Skills (which requires administering a Local Performance Assessment for students in a standardized measure) as a prerequisite for graduation. This lasts till the end of the 2023/24 academic year. 

- The Department of Education in Oregon has been asked to review the rules for getting a high school diploma, including different diploma options. They need to suggest any changes by September 2021.

  1. - They also need to review the state's requirements for showing skills in subjects like reading and math. They should suggest any changes to these requirements by September 2021 too.

--


https://www.oregon.gov/ode/educator-resources/essentialskills/pages/default.aspx#:~:text=Students%20demonstrate%20that%20they%20have,and%20Local%20Performance%20Assessment%20Manual.
(explanation of what "Essential Skills Graduation Requirement" is)

https://web.archive.org/web/20210814011021/https://www.oregon.gov/ode/educator-resources/assessment/Documents/es_localperformanceasmt_manual.pdf
(2021-2022 Essential Skills and Local Performance Assessment Manual)

https://olis.oregonlegislature.gov/liz/2021R1/Downloads/MeasureDocument/SB744/Enrolled (pdf of Senate Bill 744) 


https://www.opb.org/article/2021/09/20/examining-oregon-decision-to-drop-high-school-essential-skill-requirements/

https://apnews.com/article/health-oregon-education-coronavirus-pandemic-graduation-1ac30980c9e2d26b288a5341464efde8

https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/oregon-graduation-proficiencies/

Exaggerated/ Misleading
0 votes
by Novice (740 points)

This statement is true. According to the article, Governor Kate Brown dropped the requirement that students demonstrate they have achieved those essential skills by signing Senate Bill 744 into law. This is a fact. 

True
0 votes
by Apprentice (1.0k points)

While the claim sounds unreal compared to most education guidelines of other states, Oregon does not require mastery of reading, writing, or math for students to graduate. I found several different articles, including one from the Oregonian, one of the top trusted and credible publications in Oregon. The claim is true, but it is lacking more information to provide insight on the decision to change the law. Department of Education and lawmakers said that requiring all students to pass a standardized test was a hurdle that could be harmful to marginalized students. Those students mainly include minorities who speak a second language. Overall, the claim is true and the source is credible, but more information needs to be provided to give background and legitimacy to the claim.  

https://www.oregonlive.com/education/2023/10/oregon-again-says-students-dont-need-to-prove-mastery-of-reading-writing-or-math-to-graduate-citing-harm-to-students-of-color.html#:~:text=Oregon%20high%20school%20students%20won,requirement%20that%20began%20in%202020.

True
0 votes
by Novice (720 points)

When first looking at this claim, at a first glance it sounds like the claim would be false. The article itself does reveal that this claim is true because it has facts from OregonLive which tried to interview the person who passed the bill although she had no comment. Upon further research, I found that this Bill is called Bill 744 and it suspends the essentials learning skills requirement for Oregon students. This bill in supposed to help inclusivity in schools especially for people of color. "“Politicians and school officials in Oregon are embarrassed that too many minority children fail tests designed to confirm they’ve mastered the ‘essential skills’ that high school is meant to teach,” said WSJ in its editorial. “So in the name of racial equity, they’ve now done the progressive thing.” After reviewing more sources, this claim is in fact true.

https://www.opb.org/article/2021/09/20/examining-oregon-decision-to-drop-high-school-essential-skill-requirements/

https://www.oregon.gov/ode/students-and-family/OregonDiploma/Documents/SB744%201-page%20Resource.pdf 

0 votes
by Newbie (480 points)

This claim is true. In 2021 the OPB said, "Senate Bill 744 orders a review of state graduation requirements and suspends a requirement that Oregon students in the classes of 2022, 2023 and 2024 show proficiency in Essential Learning Skills in order to graduate".  The essential skills includes but is not limited to writing, reading, and math.

https://www.opb.org/article/2021/09/20/examining-oregon-decision-to-drop-high-school-essential-skill-requirements/

True
0 votes
by Newbie (380 points)
According to the provided article, Kate Brown, the governor of Oregon, has decided to remove the requirement that high school graduates be proficient in arithmetic, reading, and writing. Senate Bill 774 was enacted into law, bringing about those modifications. Upon examining further sites like OregonLive, The Oregon Broadcast, and several others, it appears that reading, writing, and math competency have all been abandoned. The text of Senate Bill 774 is displayed on the official website of the Oregon State Legislator.

 https://www.oregonlive.com/education/2023/10/oregon-again-says-students-dont-need-to-prove-mastery-of-reading-writing-or-math-to-graduate-citing-harm-to-students-of-color.html#:~:text=Oregon%20high%20school%20students%20won,requirement%20that%20began%20in%202020
True

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