+36 votes
in General Factchecking by Genius (42.0k points)

Oregon governor signs new law allowing students to graduate without proving they can read, write, or do math.  

by Novice (750 points)
This claim is true. When I was in high school the rules were a little different so I had to do some research to verify the details of test taking. The confusion must have been from changes in the Senate office and other positions in the government, the fact of the matter is that students have to meet a standardized level of reading, writing, and math to graduate.
by Newbie (480 points)
This claim is very true. Although it has struck a lot of attention about having "dumber" seniors,. When COVID struck in March of 2020 standardized testing was suspended. As many colleges do not require the SAT or ACT anymore it was not as needed. People worry that the students will not be as smart and it will be a lot easier to graduate but Oregon says "it will not mean anything less to graduate" and say "You still need all 24 credits". After Bill 744 was signed it is allowing them to conduct researching about graduation rates. Although it sounds a little crazy, this claim is true.

by Novice (550 points)
This claim is true, researching the new bill made by the Governor of Oregon was entered to rewrite the graduation requirements being able to read and write is not necessary anymore. This page goes in-depth into why lowering the expectations for children and teens is better and more advantageous. https://www.opb.org/article/2021/09/20/examining-oregon-decision-to-drop-high-school-essential-skill-requirements/
by Apprentice (1.2k points)
Hello! I think your fact-check could use a little more credibility to be accurate. I appreciate that you are a first-hand source, but I think you should have included some sort of article as evidence for your claim. For example, this article from OPB includes information about the new Oregon policy that I think could have been useful in your response.


21 Answers

+10 votes
by Apprentice (1.3k points)
selected by
Best answer
While the article might sound like something out of the ordinary, it is true. It does sound misleading in the sense that they don't provide the important details as to how it applies to different students of different backgrounds. The article starts off by stating that having a high school diploma doesn't necessarily prove that people who has it are capable of proof that they can read, write, or do math. Although this is true, the newly signed Bill 744 is more about how suspending the requirements will be more inclusive and help people of color.


After looking up Bill 744 for Oregon, a pdf from the Oregon.gov shows up going in detail about what it is and what it means for students.

"Remove the requirement for students to demonstrate proficiency in Essential Skills. The purpose of this pause is to research and evaluate the current graduation requirements to ensure that they are equitable, accessible, and inclusive."

While statement might sound misleading, based on evidence, it is proven that high school students technically can graduate without proving the efficiency of reading or math.
by Novice (750 points)
I liked your reference to Bill 744. It's important to not only reference news sources but also find primary sources that back up the claim.
by Novice (570 points)
I really appreciate how you explained everything. Using Bill 744 was also really helpful in understanding what was going on and how the information might seem misleading. It is an important skill to be able to point out what does sound wrong but is actually true.
by Apprentice (1.1k points)
This is very through and well done. Referencing the bill adds a lot of credibility. Adding the counter argument, of how it could sound misleading but technically it is true, and one can graduate without proving efficiency also strengthens your claim.
by Novice (740 points)
I like how you answered this question by bringing up the law that was passed that clarifies this statement.
by Apprentice (1.1k points)
I think this is a good factcheck, and I appreciate how you found a primary source for this claim. The title of the claim sounds like it would be false, and I think that acknowledging that in your response was a nice touch too. I think maybe finding one more source could be helpful to the response to strengthen your claim too.
by Novice (980 points)
I value the thorough explanation you provided. Understanding what was going on and how the information might seem misleading was also greatly aided by using Bill 744. Being able to identify what seems incorrect but is true is a crucial ability.
by Novice (710 points)
I think it was a smart idea to refer to a primary source, and you made a good point about the claim being true even if it sounds misleading, good job.
by Novice (600 points)
This assertion is absolutely accurate. Though having "dumber" elders has garnered a lot of attention. Standardized testing was halted in March 2020 following the COVID-19 pandemic. It was less necessary because the SAT and ACT are no longer required by many universities. Although Oregon claims that "it will not mean anything less to graduate" and that "you still need all 24 credits," others are concerned that the students will not be as intelligent and that graduation will be much simpler. Following the ratification of Bill744, they are now able to study graduation rates. This claim is true, despite the fact that it seems a little crazy.

by Novice (750 points)
You added great information, especially adding Bill 744.
by Apprentice (1.1k points)
I found your factcheck to be very helpful and I specifically liked the sources that you used. Using a source such as Bill 744 shows that you are finding information that is both reliable and rooted in validity because it is a government document. Overall, great job on the fact check.
+26 votes
by Apprentice (1.8k points)

This is True

The original article says that the governor of Oregon, Kate Brown, singed Senate Bill 744 into law. After copy and pasting the original articles title into google I came across another website:


However the contents of this article are not so important, what is important is a hyperlink embedded in the words "Senate Bill 744" which will lead you to a one page overview website owned by the Oregon Government:


In this PDF it clearly states that this bill "maintains Oregon’s stringent high school credit requirements for graduation. Students are required to have knowledge and skills in reading, writing, and math to graduate with a diploma in Oregon.". This makes it seem that the original article is lying, however reading further you can see that the bill also allows for a school to "Temporarily suspend the requirement for students to demonstrate proficiency in the Essential Skills." With this in mind, students can graduate without proficiency in reading or math. However it is important to note that this is not applicable to all students, and is primarily used for inclusivity. 

by Novice (580 points)
Thank you for taking the time to fact-check the information regarding Oregon Governor Kate Brown and Senate Bill 744. Your effort in referencing the one-page overview of Senate Bill 744, is great. Your analysis of the bill's provisions, especially regarding the temporary suspension of proficiency requirements in reading and math, adds valuable context to the discussion.
by Novice (660 points)
Your fact-checking efforts are commendable. The inclusion of ample evidence and examples from highly reputable sources strengthens the credibility of your work. I alsoappreciate your correction of the original claim, as it mistakenly suggests that one can obtain a diploma without possessing any skills in those particular areas.
by Novice (920 points)
I appreciate your thoughtful analysis of the information you found on the subject and your ability to weigh the contradictions along with the factual aspects of the claim. I would say that, based on your analysis, it looks like the original claim is more misleading in terms of how it is phrased-- as the information you found highlighted the rarity of the requirements being waived. Great analysis, thanks!
by Novice (740 points)
Great job on this fact check. You help validate your claim by introducing facts into your claim.
by Newbie (380 points)
We appreciate you taking the time to research Senate Bill 744 and Oregon Governor Kate Brown's information. It's impressive that you took the time to refer to the one-page synopsis of Senate Bill 744. Your breakdown of the sections in the bill, particularly the one about the temporary lifting of the math and reading competence standards, provides important background information for the conversation.
+8 votes
by Apprentice (1.7k points)

This is correct.

The Oregon Live reported that Oregon’s Board of Education passed “Senate Bill 744”, suspending students in the 2022, 2023 and 2024 classes from having “essential skills” become a graduation requirement. The removal has been cited as an effect of COVID-19, with the conversation around the topic beginning in 2020. Local and state officials are using the Smarter Balanced assessment (a standardized test) to keep students on track academically. The Oregon Public Broadcasting said that “according to data from the Oregon Department of Education, 88% of reading essential skills, 77% of writing essential skills, and 73% of math essential skills were met through a standardized test.” Because of this, local school officials do not believe it changes the academic rigor of Oregon high schools. 

The essential skills being removed include “reading, writing, math, critical thinking, technology usage, and civic and community engagement.” These skills were adopted by Oregon’s Board of Education in 2007-2008, per the Senate Bill 744. The Oregon Public Broadcasting said that students “still have to pass their high school classes and earn 24 credits to graduate”. According to The Hill, Oregon’s graduating class of 2022 was the “second highest four-year graduation rate in the state” but residents do not believe this showed the student’s proficiency in education. Currently, the bill is set to stay in place until 2029.




Exaggerated/ Misleading
by Apprentice (1.3k points)
This is a well done fact check but I do not believe that true is what we should label it. The original article was misleading and that is the claim we are fact checking.
by Novice (780 points)
Your fact-check was very well done. You gave ample sources and many good quotes to go along with it. My only issue is that you labeled this as true. I believe the original article to be exaggerating the information. Also, bases on other fact-chekcers responses it stands to reason that there may be some form of exaggeration happening here. These four skills are extremely important, but the original source makes it seem as though you do not need any of those skills in order to graduate.
by Novice (670 points)
I thought this did a really good job of breaking down what the claim meant. Adding not only legitimate sources to back up your fact check, but also quotes that from the sources helps add a lot of validity to the source.
by Apprentice (1.6k points)
This is a great fact-check. I liked that you opened the claim by stating it was true. It automatically notifies the reader about the authenticity of your fact-check. I also enjoyed the ample amount of sources you cited. Overall, very well done.
by Novice (640 points)
Your fact check is well-done, but I would not label this as "true," moreso misleading.
by Novice (750 points)
This fact check is really well done. I like the inclusion of statistics and numbers. It definitely acts strong evidence.
by Apprentice (1.6k points)
I liked that you noted that the original article was misleading. While yes, the bill did get passed and the majority of the claim is true, students will still have to pass their basic high school courses, thus meaning that students will still have to learn how to read, write, and do math.
by Apprentice (1.0k points)
I liked that you used multiple sources and showed you read laterally instead of just sticking to one source. I don't believe the claim is exactly misleading, simply because it is true. Rather, the claim is true and needs more information to give it depth and make it seem like a credible claim.
by Newbie (380 points)
Our fact-checking was excellent. You included enough of references and insightful quotations to support your points. I take issue solely with your labeling this as true. I think the information in the original article was overstated. It also makes sense that there could be some exaggeration going on here based on the comments of other fact-checkers. Although the original source implies that none of these four talents are necessary to graduate, they are all very crucial.
+4 votes
by Apprentice (1.3k points)
The Original Article was posted on a website called the post millennial. Nothing about this site seems legit at all. However, I saw two subsequent articles that that proved this story true. Oregon Live and Oregon Public Broadcasting, each of them reported this as being true. While the intent of the PM article was to stir the pot with republican voters in Oregon.


Exaggerated/ Misleading
by Journeyman (2.1k points)
Using a .org site is awesome for fact-checking! I like that you tagged your response as exaggerated/misleading instead of correct. I agree. The original claim is that high schoolers can graduate without proving they can read, write, or do math. But, as your article of choice explains, this is not the whole truth. I'd love to see more of your thoughts on what makes a sight seem legit.
by Journeyman (2.2k points)
I would love to hear more insight about why you believe this website is not legit. Along with expanding on why Oregon Live and Oregon Public Broadcasting believe this is true. How do you know that these sites are legit?
by Genius (42.0k points)
A little more background and information would be helpful for someone who doesn't know about the law. Thanks!
by Novice (720 points)
It seems that you have reliable sources, and your answer is straight to the point. It would be helpful to include a bit more information about the claim and just some deeper explanations. Otherwise this is a helpful answer with strong sources.
+1 vote
by Novice (680 points)

This is true, but not permanently in effect. The article linked above stated, "Governor Kate Brown dropped the requirement that students demonstrate they have achieved those essential skills by signing Senate Bill 744 into law." I looked up "Senate Bill 744 Oregon" and I found that this is correct and was signed in 2021. Here's a link that shows the official enrolled senate bill from the Oregon legislative assembly. 


Section 3 of the bill states that students may not be required to show proficiency in Essential Learning Skills as a condition of receiving a high school diploma during the 2021-2022, 2022-2023, or 2023-2024 school year. 

by Genius (42.0k points)
When you say it is not permanently in effect, what do you mean? Is the law currently active? Is there a deadline, making it temporarily in effect?
by Novice (680 points)
There's a deadline, "Section 3 of the bill states that students may not be required to show proficiency in Essential Learning Skills as a condition of receiving a high school diploma during the 2021-2022, 2022-2023, or 2023-2024 school year."
+1 vote
by Apprentice (1.2k points)
Looking at the article given, it states that the governor of Oregon, Kate Brown, has now made it not a requirement for high school students to graduate with writing, reading and math proficiency.  The Senate Bill 774 was put into law making those changes exist.  Now looking at other sources such as OregonLive, The Oregon Broadcast and much more, all the articles suggested the same thing that the proficiency for reading, writing and math have all been dropped.  Even looking at the official Oregon State Legislator website, it shows the Senate Bill 774 and its contents.

OregonLive: https://www.oregonlive.com/education/2023/10/oregon-again-says-students-dont-need-to-prove-mastery-of-reading-writing-or-math-to-graduate-citing-harm-to-students-of-color.html#:~:text=Oregon%20high%20school%20students%20won,requirement%20that%20began%20in%202020.

Oregon Public Broadcasting: https://www.opb.org/article/2021/09/20/examining-oregon-decision-to-drop-high-school-essential-skill-requirements/

Oregon Legislature PDF: https://olis.oregonlegislature.gov/liz/2021R1/Downloads/MeasureDocument/SB744/Enrolled
by Genius (42.0k points)
How would you rate the claim based on your fact-checking?
+2 votes
by Novice (510 points)
This is true. The article specifically mentions, Senate Bill 744, and after doing a quick search on Bill 744 I was able to find all of the specifics from the Oregon Government website: https://www.oregon.gov/ode/students-and-family/OregonDiploma/Documents/SB744%201-page%20Resource.pdf

The Oregon Government website details more of the specifics that go along with this Bill. The goal of removing the proficiency requirement is to focus more on the graduation requirements within Oregon high schools and make sure that those requirements are inclusive and beneficial for all students. While the article is correct I think it would benefit from a little bit more context.
by Novice (970 points)
This is a good response. I like how you cited a source to show proficient research on this topic. I do agree with you that the article could use more specific context because it can be misleading to some readers from the first look. I think what could also help this fact check is by adding another source to where you found the information that it is true.
by Apprentice (1.0k points)
I agree, this article and claim do need more context to add credibility. I would also say, usng a better source like the one you used or from a trusted publication, rather than the Post Millennial.
+1 vote
by Newbie (280 points)

This is a true claim. This Official Government Record states that students K-12 do not need to read proficiently to graduate. A law passed into law by former Oregon Governor, Kate Brown in 2023. 

0 votes
by Novice (830 points)

This claim is false. It is not true that students are able to graduate high school in the state of Oregon without being able to read, write or do math based on Senate Bill 744. Senate Bill 744 allowed a temporary suspension of the Assessment of Essential Skills section of education so that research can be done on how equitable the requirement is. This means that a particular state test temporarily not being required. As shown in the Oregon Diploma requirements, students are still required to complete credits in the areas of math and language arts. So the claim that they can graduate without being able to read, write or do math is false; however, you can receive a high school diploma without completing the Assessment of Essential skills. 

Oregon Diploma requirements- https://www.oregon.gov/ode/students-and-family/oregondiploma/Pages/default.aspx 

Senate Bill 744- https://www.oregon.gov/ode/rules-and-policies/Documents/SB744_OnePageOverview.docx.pdf

by Genius (42.0k points)
"So the claim that they can graduate without being able to read, write or do math is false"

The claim actually says students can graduate without *proof* of reading, writing, or math proficiency. Do you still think it's false after conducting your fact-check?
+1 vote
by Novice (960 points)

This is correct.

While looking into this claim I found multiple websites that revealed Kate Brown's initiative. The websites provided details into the senate bill that governor Kate Brown signed into law. It turns that in 2021 this bill was passed but it has exceptions. It states that "An Oregon high school diploma does not guarantee that students who earned it can read, write or do math at a high school level."  These new standards will help students that have other strengths that aren't necessarily being tested. Instead of testing them using standardized test. 





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