Bill mandates valedictorians in state’s school districts

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A state lawmaker has introduced legislation that would require school districts in Ohio to name a valedictorian and a salutatorian.

The House bill introduced by Republican state Rep. Niraj Antani (NEER’-ahj an-TAHN’-ee), of Miamisburg, comes after Mason High School in southwestern Ohio decided it will stop awarding those academic honors.

Many schools traditionally have bestowed the valedictorian title on the graduating student with the highest cumulative grade-point average. The salutatorian title has often gone to the student with the second-highest average.

The Columbus Dispatch reports Antani says the gist of the legislation is that “academic competition is good.”

The bill allows districts to set criteria for selecting valedictorians and salutatorians.

Some Ohio education groups oppose any state bill mandating decisions they say should be made at the local level.

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