Bill passes to extend high school age for refugees

Local school boards could allow refugees and foreign-born students to extend their stay in high school from age 21 to 23 under a bill that has passed the House.

The vote was 71-26 Thursday. State Rep. Jody Richards, a Bowling Green Democrat who sponsored the bill, said it would help these students catch up after arriving in this country with a poor education.

Some representatives who opposed the measure said it helped foreign-born students while students with disabilities would still have to leave school at the age of 21. Other critics expressed concerns that a 23-year-old man could be attending school with a 15-year-old girl.

The legislation moves to the Senate for consideration.

The legislation is House Bill 131.

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