State Board Boosting HS Graduation Requirements

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Graduating from high school could be getting tougher in Texas.

The State Board of Education has given tentative approval to a plan to increase the necessary number of credits needed to graduate from 24 -- to 26.

A final vote is expected Friday in Austin.

It would mean students have to take about two more classes over their high school careers.

The plan would dovetail with a new state law requiring every graduate to have four years of math and science -- beginning in 2011. That's one more year of math and science than is now required.

The board decided to boost the credits so that students can take the extra math and science classes without being discouraged from pursuing electives, such as fine arts or vocational courses.

The law will apply to students who take the recommended course curriculum plan, starting with next year's freshman class.

After some debate, the 15-member board in Austin decided to allow eighth-graders taking Algebra One to count the class toward their four years of math.