CNN新闻在线听附文本(2010-02-24) 简介：Download MP3 Audio 把音频贴到我的博客(Qzone)或BBS 关闭MP3地址:音频页面地址:Remember being a senior in high school? It was a big deal, right? Homecomi…
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Remember being a senior in high school? It was a big deal, right? Homecoming, the prom, graduation, the excitement of taking that next step. You know, the stuff that memories are made of. Well, can you imagine high school ending in 11th grade? Juniors at the top of the high school hierarchy? Well, they're actually having that discussion in Utah right now.
A state senator has proposed making senior year optional. If you've got enough credits to go to the next level, well go for it. If you need the senior year, take it. The idea here is to save money. The man who has proposed the idea says it could save Utah up to $60 million and the state is looking for ways to make up for a big money shortfall.
Some people who support the idea say that many seniors just slack off anyway, you know, the old senior slump, senioritis but the student body president of West Jordan High School in Utah actually told the "L.A. Times," "senior year hasn't been a waste for me. If you're the type of kid who will slack off, you'd find a way to do that in sophomore or junior year anyway."
Well, you have to admit the idea is definitely different. So let's talk about it. William Sederburg is Utah's commissioner of higher education and the lawmaker who put that idea out there in the first place, Senator Chris Buttars. They're joining us both live from Salt Lake City.
All right. So, Senator, let's start with you. How did you come up with the idea and why did you think this would be a good way to save money?
SEN. CHRIS BUTTARS, UTAH STATE SENATOR: Well, there is a lot of money to be saved. We've got a $700 million shortfall. If you talk about the 12th grade, that represents $120 million. But by giving the seniors an option, it's really up to the parents and the child so there's no pressure to stay in 12th grade.
I believe that about half will take the option. There’re some incentives. There's $1,000 scholarship and a number of things that they'll be able to take advantage of. For example, we give the kids in the 12th grade a special price for their freshman year called AP classes. So we let that transfer over to their freshman year.
I believe as this becomes better known where this option is available, it will become a big thing. You talk about $120 million and you talk about two groups of kids in high school, those that's working real hard taking AP classes really has one foot in college and then you've got the kids that are just goofing off. If you talk to 100 kids, you'll hear over and over again, well, I took four classes of PE and two arts classes. That's not a…