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Florida High Schoolers to Begin Declaring Majors

May 05, 2006|From the Associated Press

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — The Legislature gave final approval to a bill Thursday that requires high school students to declare a major, similar to college students.

The measure now goes to Republican Gov. Jeb Bush, who pushed the requirement as part of a sweeping education overhaul approved by the House, 90 to 24. The Senate passed it earlier in the day, 39 to 1.

"It's important because it'll make the high school experience more relevant for a broader range of students," Bush said. "This will give them a chance to pursue education where their interests lie.... There still will be core curricula credits that they'll need to pass."

The bill also requires that high school students take a fourth year of math and that middle school students receive career planning instruction.

The measure originally referred to major and minor subjects, but was changed to "major areas of interest."

"We're saying we're trying to get students to think more in terms of 'What do I really like to do? What is my talent?' " said Senate Education Committee Chairwoman Evelyn J. Lynn, a Republican.

A major could be an academic subject such as math, or a vocational field such as carpentry.

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