The Pasco School District will request an extension from the Washington School Board of Education on new state-mandated high school graduation requirements.
School board members agreed last week to draft a request to delay requiring more social studies courses for the class of 2016, next year's incoming freshmen. They want to delay it until 2018.
The district's graduation requirements currently meet or exceed the rest of the state's mandate.
"This is the second time they've made a change without (providing) any funding," said Superintendent Saundra Hill.
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State board members approved the new graduation requirements in mid-November. They are aimed at preparing students for a career or college.
Under the new requirements, high school students must take more English and social studies classes and can take fewer elective courses.
The total number of credits required by the state will remain at 20, though Pasco will continue to require students to have 22 credits to graduate.
Hill said the additional half-credit in social studies that Pasco students will have to take will have an effect on the district, including requiring hiring new staff.
Implementing that requirement with less than a year of notification would be difficult, she said.
Sergey Gorbatyuk, 18, a Pasco High senior and student representative on the board, said he urged the board to delay the new social studies requirement as long as possible.
Adding another graduation requirement will make it harder for students like him to be involved in other programs, such as music and the arts.
"I know students who have to take a semester off (from elective programs) so they can meet a graduation requirement," he said.