This study examines Algebra II completion and failure rates for students entering Texas public high schools from 2007/08 through 2014/15. This period spans the time when Texas students, beginning with the 2007/08 grade 9 cohort, were required to take four courses each in English, math (including Algebra II), science, and social studies (called the 4x4) and the time when, beginning with the 2014/15 cohort, the state moved to the new Foundation High School Program, which eliminated Algebra II as a math requirement. Overall, Algebra II completion and failure rates followed the same trend for the 2014/15 cohort as for the seven cohorts that graduated under the previous graduation requirements. Key findings include: (1) In the 2014/15 school year, the first after enactment of HB 5, 37 percent of districts reported requiring students to complete Algebra II to graduate from high school; (2) Fewer than half of districts reported that they planned to offer the alternative math courses in the first year of the new graduation requirements; (3) Both before and after enactment of HB 5, 78 percent of students completed Algebra II as their third math course; (4) Trends in Algebra II completion and failure for most student subgroups remained stable after enactment of HB 5; and (5) Almost all students who did not complete Algebra II after taking Geometry either were taking a pre-Algebra II course or had completed math courses only through Geometry in the first three years of high school. The findings from this study suggest that students' choice of the third high school math course was not immediately influenced by the HB 5 policy enacted in 2013.
ERIC DescriptorsAcademic Failure, Algebra, Cohort Analysis, College Readiness, Educational Attainment, Educational Change, Educational Legislation, Educational Trends, Enrollment, Failure, Geometry, Grade 9, Graduation Requirements, High School Students, Mathematics, Mathematics Achievement, Public Schools, Required Courses, School Districts, State Legislation
Southwest | Publication Type:
Descriptive Study | Publication
Date: February 2018