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House Bill 5 Information Q&A

House Bill 5

Frequently Asked Questions

House Bill 5 (HB5), which was passed during the 83rd Texas Legislative Session, impacts a number of areas in the Texas Education Code.   The new law will significantly change the requirements for high school graduation, graduation planning, and state testing requirements.  The following are questions and answers pertaining to HB5.

How can I earn Performance Acknowledgements on my Foundation High School Plan?

Outstanding performance in the areas of dual credit coursework college AP courses PSAT SAT or ACT.

How does HB5 affect high school students?

HB5 affects high school students as follows: 

1.  It reduces the number of state and end-of-course (EOC) assessments required for high school students to graduate.  In the past, high school students were required to take 15 EOC assessments.  Now, through the passage of HB5, only five EOC assessments are required.

2.  It also allows high school students greater flexibility in choosing their courses while maintaining academic rigor.   It establishes one basic graduation plan, called the Foundation High School Plan (FHSP), with the opportunity for students to earn endorsements and performance acknowledgments.

What are the course requirements of the Foundation High School Program?

What are the five endorsement areas?

The endorsement areas and the career field to which they relate are as follows:

1.  STEM

  • Science, Engineering, and Math

2.  Public Services

  • Health Science, Education, Law Enforcement, and Culinary Arts.

3.  Business and Industry

  • Information Technology, Database Management, Marketing, Accounting, Finance, Graphic Design, Architecture, Construction, Welding Automotive Technology, and Agriculture Science.

4.  Arts and Humanities

  • Literature, World Languages, Cultural Studies, English Literature, History, and Fine Arts.

5. Multidisciplinary studies

  • This endorsement provides students with the opportunity to take a variety of courses from each of the other four endorsements areas.

What if I choose to be in a magnet program?

Students who choose a magnet program will be assigned the endorsement corresponding to their specialty. However, a student may earn an additional endorsement upon consultation with the magnet dean and counselor. To graduate under the magnet program, students must complete all magnet requirements.

What happens if my child changes endorsements or elects to graduate without an endorsement?

Once an endorsement area is selected, a student may change their endorsement at any time, or may opt at the end of their 10th grade year to graduate under the Foundation High School Plan without an endorsement.  Students who graduate without an endorsement will be eligible to apply to all four-year colleges in the State of Texas, but will not qualify for the Top 10% consideration.  It is recommended that all students graduate with an endorsement.  Doing so ensures students have the maximum opportunity and options available to them.

What is an endorsement under the Foundation High School Plan?

The FHSP, when combined with an endorsement, gives high school students greater flexibility in choosing their courses while maintaining academic rigor.   Much as a student would pick a major in college, the new option for an endorsement offers a student the ability to earn a total of 30 total credits comprised of core requirements and endorsement electives in a targeted area of study for high school graduation.  NOTE:  local policy requires students to earn more credits.

When will students take EOC retests?

EOC retests will be offered three times during the school year.

Which EOC tests are now required for graduation?

The following five EOC tests are now required for graduation:

  • English I (includes Reading and Writing and joined into one test)

  • English II (includes Reading and Writing and joined into one test)

  • Algebra I

  • Biology

  • U.S. History

My student took one of the required EOC test, but didn’t pass. It is necessary for him/her to restest?

Yes.  A student who fails any of the required assessments is required to retest.

Graduation Requirements