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Franklin Regional might give academic credit for outside courses

| Thursday, Feb. 7, 2013, 7:16 a.m.

Franklin Regional School Board is considering giving students credits towards graduation for classes that students take outside of the high school, such as German language classes offered at Westmoreland County Community College.

Current district policy allows students to use outside classes as prerequisites for advance classes at Franklin Regional, but the district doesn't count those outside courses toward graduation requirements.

For example, a handful of students each year take math classes at WCCC over the summer in order to be able to schedule calculus at the high school. But these classes could not be used to fulfill any of the 24 credits requires to graduate. Those credits must be taught by Franklin regional teachers.

“Don't we think there are some things outside the scope of our walls that should be considered for our graduation requirements?” asked school board member Joe Seymour. “I loathe the idea of having policy that shuts students down.”

Board member Paul Scheinert agreed that eventually the district will have to start accepting credits earned elsewhere toward graduation, but he cautioned that academic standards and rigor must be upheld. As it stands, the district has no policy in place to determine how to weigh credits earned elsewhere.

The board will hold further discussions on this matter.

Bob Pajich is a freelance writer for Trib Total Media.

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