In a bipartisan manner, the State Senate passed four education bills aimed at encouraging our young people to challenge themselves in the areas of math and science to prepare themselves not only for college but for the jobs of the future. Incentives were also offered to those who would like to teach in these crucial and understaffed areas.
Senate Bill 2 will increase the rigor of the high school curricula by increasing the number of schools offering advanced placement courses as well as the number of existing AP classes and the number of exams taken. The bill will provide incentives for students to take AP examinations and provide grants for schools to start AP programs in advanced math and science. It is our hope that as students excel in these classes and score well, this will decrease the college costs for parents with meaningful college prep classes - colleges give credit for scores of 3 or above. The bill will also provide financial incentives to middle schools to set up demanding math/science tracks and to teachers to improve content knowledge. Jobs in the math and science fields will be in high demand in the future. As a coal-producing state, we must be prepared to lead in the energy industry.