The school board is reassessing requirements for honorary graduates, valedictorians, and saluters; first vote Thursday
The Troup County School Board considered several new revisions Monday to current policies for Farewell Graduates, Salutatorians, Distinguished Honors Graduates and Honors Graduates for the Class of 2023 and beyond.
A total of eight revisions were submitted to the board. These suggestions come from recent public comments on the policy. Aspects of the policy have been revised to clarify certain components of the policy, explained Jonathan Laney, director of secondary education at TCSS.
One of the most significant proposed changes to the policy, Laney noted, is an adjustment to specifically state that a valedictorian and a salutatorian must be members of the graduating cohort.
“The cohort is established at the beginning of the first year of the cohort,” Laney explained. “If you are graduating in 2023, but were due to graduate in [2024,] you could be a distinguished honorary graduate, but you could not represent your class as valedictorian or salutatorian.
Transferred students and homeschoolers will still be eligible for valedictorian and salutatorian under this policy.
A proposed change has been rewritten to clarify that a student must be enrolled in the Troup County school system for at least four semesters prior to their graduation date to be considered a valedictorian or salutatorian. Another proposed change also clarified a student’s class ranking is based on weighted GPA. The marks from the transcript and the marks posted on the report card at the end of the third nine weeks of the last year will be used to calculate the class ranking.
A new policy included the International Baccalaureate (IB) program as a factor in a student’s grade point average. Currently, Advanced Placement (AP) courses and dual enrollment courses are only included in this process.
An additional proposed change in the policy included the incorporation of AP Art and AP Art History into a student’s weighted GPA, which was previously excluded. Laney said the change clarified that dual-enrollment courses, which are typically technical in nature, continue to include only academic courses like English, math, science, social studies and foreign languages.
A proposed change in policy would adjust this policy so that honorary graduates are announced at the end of the first semester at the end of the grading period. From there, distinguished honor graduates, valedictorians, and salutatorians could be determined. The change also indicated that students will now only need three social studies units to graduate instead of the three and a half under current policies.
The requirement of four units in math, English and science, two units in a foreign language and three units in fine arts; health and/or physical education; vocational, technical, agricultural education; or additional foreign language units will not change.
The school board will vote on the suggestions Thursday at its regular meeting. A second compulsory reading will take place in July.