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New HS graduation requirements now law in IL



Pekin, Ill. – Illinois will now require high school students to take more math, science, and English before graduating.

Gov. Rod Blagojevich signed the legislation Wednesday at a high school in Pekin, Ill.

The law requires students to take four years of English instead of three; three years of math instead of two; two years of science instead of one; and to take two intensive writing courses.

The new requirements will be phased in over four years.

Some lawmakers complained that the tougher requirements only bring Illinois to about average in terms of what states require of graduates. But others said pushing for even stricter rules too fast would kill the measure.

Ill. High School Graduation Requirements
(in years needed in each subject)

Subject Before 2005-6 * 2006-7 * 2007-8 * 2008-9 *
English 3 3 3 3 4
Math 2 3 3 3 3
Science 1 1 1 2 2
Social Studies 2 2 2 2 2
Music, Art, Foreign Lang., or Voc. Ed. 1 1 1 1 1
Writing 0 0 2 2 2
* - denotes requirements for those entering 9th grade that year


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