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Arizona House moves to end algebra II requirement for students

The Arizona House of Representatives has voted to remove algebra II as a requirement for high school students. 

While algebra II would no longer be mandatory, four years of math still is. The state Board of Education would have to come up with an alternative such as statistics or business math. 

The bill’s sponsor, GOP Rep. John Fillmore, says students would benefit from more practical skills. 

"For kids to understand the ability to, to amortize a loan, do business discounting and understanding sometimes when 60% off an item in a retail store still may not be a good deal, even with that 60%," Fillmore said. 

Democrat Reginald Bolding worries about how the bill will impact students. 

"What I think is this bill is going to disproportionately impact students in low-income communities. It's going to dumb down the standards. It's not going to give our kids the resources and the opportunities that they need to be successful at a further level," Bolding said.

Most Democrats opposed the measure, but Rep. Mitzi Epstein says current math standards are not set for achieving relevant math. The bill now moves to the Senate. 

Greg Hahne started as a news intern at KJZZ in 2020 and returned as a field correspondent in 2021. He learned his love for radio by joining Arizona State University's Blaze Radio, where he worked on the production team.