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North Dakota

June 14, 2007

Senate Bill 2309: A Bill Regarding High School Requirements

Author:
Senators Dave Nething, JoNell A. Bakke, Layton W. Freborg

Summary:
This bill would require all high school graduates in North Dakota to have completed a college preparatory curriculum before receiving a diploma. This is an unreasonable requirement for students who don’t have the aptitude or inclination to complete such a curriculum. Many students have no plans to attend college but want a high school diploma before entering the work force. This bill affects homeschoolers because they receive their diplomas from the local school district, North Dakota Division of Independent Study, or a state-approved nonpublic school.

Status:

1/22/2007 Introduced, first reading, and referred to the Education Committee
1/29/2007 Committee hearing
1/31/2007 Amended in Committee and Committee report: “Do pass.”
2/1/2007 Senate amendment adopted and referred to the Appropriations Committee
2/6/2007 Committee hearing and Committee report: “Do pass.”
2/7/2007 Second reading and passage in the Senate
2/8/2007 Received from the Senate
2/13/2007 Introduced, first reading, and referred to the Education Committee
3/12/2007 Committee hearing
3/15/2007 Reported back “Do Pass” as amended
3/16/2007 Amendment adopted
4/20/2007 Conference Committee report adopted by the Senate, passed second reading, and placed on Calendar
4/23/2007 Conference Committee report adopted by the House and passed second reading
4/24/2007 Signed by the Speaker of the House
4/26/2007 Signed by the President of the Senate and sent to the Governor
4/26/2007 Signed by the Governor and filed with the Secretary of the State

HSLDA's Position:
HSLDA monitored this legislation.

Action Requested:
None at this time.

Background:
Senate Bill 2309 is legislation which would prohibit any North Dakota student from graduating from high school or being admitted to college without completing a college preparatory curriculum. This bad bill has already passed the Senate and is now in the House of Representatives.

How will this bill affect homeschoolers if it becomes law? Clearly, all students in a home education program receiving a diploma from their local school district, the North Dakota Division of Independent Study, or a state-approved nonpublic school would have to meet the new curriculum requirement. Additionally, homeschool graduates receiving a diploma from their parents and planning to attend college in North Dakota would have to complete the college preparatory curriculum. The unreasonable aspect of this proposed law is that even students who don’t have the aptitude to complete a college preparatory curriculum or any plans to attend college would be required to meet the new graduation requirement. This is absurd.

This new law could also affect admission to trade schools and employment opportunities if the schools or employers required high school diplomas. If only those students who had completed the college preparatory curriculum were considered to be high school graduates, then other students would be left out in the cold. (And it gets cold in North Dakota!)

 Other Resources

Bill Text   (requires Adobe Acrobat Reader)

Bill History