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More math, science needed to graduate starting with Class of 2017
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Platteville High School freshmen, sophomores and juniors recently made selections for their 2015–16 school year classes.

Freshmen and sophomores will have to choose more math and science classes in future school years to fulfill new state graduation requirements.

That in turn will require increasing the number of PHS math faculty, even as the school district is looking at having to cut up to $300,000 from its 2015–16 budget because of proposed state aid cuts and state revenue caps.

Since 1988, the state has required that high school students have two credits each of mathematics, including algebra and geometry, and science, including biology and physics, to graduate.

The state Legislature in its last session increased the graduation requirement to three credits of mathematics — which can include one credit of computer science or a Career and Technical Education class — and three credits of science, which can include a CTE class or an agriculture class.

Most PHS 2014 graduates and current seniors would meet the new graduation requirements. Platteville Public Schools superintendent Connie Valenza said that 42 of the Class of 2014’s 138 graduates did not meet the new math requirement, and 32 of the Class of 2014 didn’t meet the new science requirement. The numbers are lower in the Class of 2015 — which is not subject to the new requirement — with 25 of 105 seniors not having taken three credits of math and 22 of 105 seniors not having taken three credits of science.

Platteville High School principal Tim Engh brought up potential math and science options at the School Board’s Feb. 23 meeting, including a ninth-grade integrated science, or pre-biology, class; applied geometry; and possible CTE courses.