New agreement would provide plan for Streetsboro students with disabilities to better address their careers

by mike lesko | Reporter Published:

Streetsboro -- The Streetsboro Board of Education unanimously approved an agenda item that gives students with disabilities the option to "opt-out" of algebra II and one advanced science course beyond biology.

The School Board unanimously approved the Ohio Core Opt-Out Provision at the May 8 School Board meeting. The plan would go into effect in the fall.

Superintendent Michael Daulbaugh said the state minimum requirement for a student to graduate in Ohio and go on to an accredited four-year university is 20 credits.

"Potentially, we have students [with disabilities] that might struggle in the areas of math, maybe beyond algebra and beyond biology," Daulbaugh said. "What this opt-out provision does is, it allows these students and parents to opt-out of an advanced math class or an advanced science class so they can still graduate and get a diploma from Streetsboro City Schools.

"Otherwise, if you don't exercise this opt-out provision, you could have students who just can't pass some of those advanced courses in mathematics or science, and then they don't graduate," he said.

Daulbaugh said the provision gives the district "a way to address those few students."

"They'll still get a diploma, but, by law, the parents, students and schools enter into this opt-out agreement," he said.

That will "force [school officials] to have a plan in place as to how to address their career," he said. "We have to create what is called an individual career plan. What that does is, it forces us to have a conversation -- parents, students and school -- and create a plan where they either commit to a 2-year program in college, which is an associate degree; or acquire a business and industry credential, which they can achieve at Maplewood Career Center; or enter into an apprenticeship, which also can be achieved at Maplewood."

Daulbaugh stressed this doesn't mean students can't attend an institution like The Ohio State University, the University of Akron or Kent State University, "but if they use the opt-out provision, they'll have to take a couple remedial classes."

School Board member Denise Baba said this means "the student ultimately will not be underserved by not taking these courses."

"They will still be employable," she said. "They will still have a future. It's just, they're not going to take the same path as a traditional student."

Email: mlesko@recordpub.com

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