LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - A new school year usually means a new teacher, new textbooks and for some even a new school. However, this year for incoming high school freshman across Texas, it will mean a new curriculum. It's all a part of a mandate set by the Texas Legislature. Last summer House Bill 5 was signed by Governor Perry. The new layout of curriculum will change how high schools will educate students across the state.
"The graduation requirements are in a sense main streaming students to a certain area," said Julie McManus, a counselor at Lufkin High School. "Freshman will have five endorsements to choose from."
The five areas are art and humanities, business, public services, multidisplinary studies and stem. Those currently in high school will not have to follow the new requirements but all incoming freshman will be required to pick a direct path of studies. McManus said the incoming freshman had to pick their path at the end of the last academic school year. She said many of these young adults may have changed their minds over the summer, but there is no need to worry they are not locked in.
"Students are able to change their endorsements basically at any time. They just need to contact the counseling center. " McManus said.
Basically this new layout gives students the freedom to choose the classes they want to take. Once they have completed the series of course work they will have earned an endorsement.
So what happens if the course work can't be completed? For example, if the student changes direction later on in their high school and can't complete the course work. The student then will automatically fall into the multidisciplinary studies, which is broader path.
In the end educators believe that this will help high school students be better prepared for college and higher education.