College and career readiness

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The implementation of the Common Core State Standards a set of benchmarks designed to better prepare students for college coursework have set up a debate in the Utah Legislature regarding things like expanding Utah's higher education degree offerings, funding career and technical education, and increasing student performance at the high school level.

The need for improved college readiness and degree completion has become a key issues for Utah leaders, and one that is likely to be addressed in the Utah Legislature 2013 session.

Sen. Howard Stephenson, R-Draper, said he intends to sponsor a bill that would mandate and provide funding for all high school students to take a college readiness exam. The proposal is similar to a bill that failed to pass before last year's legislative session ended.

Sen. John Valentine, R-Orem, has sponsored a bill to fund an additional 40 students annually at the University of Utah. The bill cleared the Senate Education standing Committee during the opening day of the session.

The legislature will also get a chance to weigh in on university status for Dixie State College after the Utah State Board of Regents approved the change Friday, Jan. 25.

Utah education officials want two-thirds of the state's adults to hold a post-secondary degree or certificate by the year 2020, up from the 43 percent of adults who currently have a degree. The goal is being driven by Prosperity 2020, a public/private partnership that aims to improve education performance in Utah, and has set goals such as a 90 percent benchmark for students testing proficient in math and English, and for the state's overall graduation rate.

Legislative actions in the education realm can be seen as an investment into strategies toward achieving the goal of improved education, and Utah's leaders are showing signs of putting forth those legislative actions they deem necessary in the 2013 session.

Follow the Deseret News' ongoing legislative coverage to learn more about education and other issues that matter to Utah families.

Education gets a boost, but preschool advances remain elusive

Education funding received a boost at the 2013 Legislature, but specific attention to preschool development for children, caps on class sizes and time for teachers to... Read more »

March 16, 2013

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Higher education action includes money for tech college

For months, Gov. Gary Herbert has been advocating for a statewide goal to have two-thirds of Utah's adults holding a postsecondary degree or certification by the... Read more »

March 16, 2013

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Calm legislative session makes some gains

The 2013 Legislature was summed up as calm and even boring as lawmakers tried to stay away from controversy and put their focus on education and other issues important... Read more »

March 16, 2013

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Late substitute of school grading bill passes after close vote in House

A bill to change the way Utah's public schools are graded was approved by the Legislature on Thursday after narrowly passing the House in a 38-36 vote amid concerns of... Read more »

March 14, 2013

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Legislature passes ACT testing bill

Both chambers of the Utah Legislature passed a bill Wednesday that funds and requires the administration of a college readiness assessment, such as the ACT or SAT, for... Read more »

March 13, 2013

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Senate OKs new school grading system

Public schools have only received one year's worth of data from the Utah Comprehensive Accountability System, but already lawmakers are looking to replace UCAS with a... Read more »

March 11, 2013

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