Act Now! State to pause HS grad requirements (vote this week)

**Taxpayers Association of Oregon  is highlighting this report by the two groups below and issuing a call to action for  taxpayers to make your opinion known by this Thursday about ODE’s plans to drop high school graduation requirements for essential skills proficiency through 2028.**

Contact the State Board with comment
Watch Sept. 21 Oregon Dept of Ed Board Meeting Live
Contact your legislator

Learn more about this issue below…

Press Release from Save Oregon Schools
September 19, 2023

PORTLAND, OREGON – A report released today by Save Oregon Schools and Oregon Association of Scholars highlights major concerns and inaccuracies in the Oregon Department of Education report on equitable graduation outcomes. [link to ODE report]

“Removing graduation standards in 2021 was a step in the wrong direction for Oregon students,” said Jeff Myers, parent and owner of Save Oregon Schools. “The report ODE published regularly misrepresented and manipulated research findings to frame the narrative they wanted, not what was best for Oregon students.”

Full Report from Oregon Association of Scholars and Save Oregon Schools [link]

2-page summary of report from Oregon Association of Scholars and Save Oregon Schools [link]

Key findings from the report:

  • Research Methodology Concerns: The report points out instances of potential plagiarism and mis-citations in ODE’s work. It emphasizes ODE’s lack of practicing even basic, high-school writing skills, such as using reputable sources and proofreading.
  • Significant, Unsupported Claims: Some of ODE’s most significant claims were without evidence or ODE misrepresented research to appear supportive. For example, there were many claims that a student’s sense of belonging was a significant, important factor for improving graduation rates and academic achievement, but the cited research made no such claims.
  • Unfair Attack on Oregon Teachers: SB 744 questions the equity of high school diploma requirements, prompting the Oregon Department of Education (ODE) to investigate. Instead of an objective analysis, ODE leans heavily on claims of systemic racism and bias without substantial evidence. ODE even insinuates that teacher biases might influence grading, a claim that lacks concrete support and paints Oregon educators in a negative light.

“The findings of this report underscore the importance of rigorous research methods, transparency, and adherence to legislative mandates,” said Dr. Bruce Gilley, President of the Oregon Association of Scholars. “It calls for a re-evaluation of ODE’s practices, rejection of all work found to be fraudulent, and a commitment to more accurate and unbiased research in the future.”

Upcoming, related events:

  • September 21, 2023: Oregon State Board of Education Meeting. Agenda includes “Suspension of the Assessment of Essential Skills through the 2027-2028 School Year”, requested by Dan Farley on behalf of ODE. This is the 2nd reading and potential final vote to push this change, which was a direct result of ODE’s fraudulent report. [link]
  • September 27-29, 2023: Oregon Legislative Committee Days. Committees can convene information meetings, and may do so to address concerns raised in this report. Senate will also likely convene for the confirmation of new ODE Director Charlene Williams, and she may be asked to address questions raised in this report. [link]

“It’s frustrating to see the Oregon State Board of Education will vote this Thursday on extending the Essential Skills graduation requirement pause until the 2027-28 school year, all because of this fraudulent report, “ Myers continued.

The Oregon Association of Scholars is the Oregon affiliate of the National Association of Scholars, a network of scholars and citizens united by a commitment to academic freedom, disinterested scholarship, and excellence in American higher education. Membership in NAS is open to all who share a commitment to these broad principles. NAS publishes a journal and has other state and regional affiliates. Visit NAS at, and OAS at or on Twitter/X @OregonScholars.

Contact: Dr. Bruce Gilley, OAS President, [email protected]

Save Oregon Schools, LLC is a registered business entity in the state of Oregon, focusing on research, analysis, and timely news pertaining to public education. Visit SOS at, on Facebook at, or on Twitter/X @PapaBearMyers.

Contact: Jeff Myers, Owner & Chief Editor,