Rhode Island’s 3-tiered high school diploma system described

Jennifer Jordan, via a kind reader’s email:

State education officials appear ready to move forward with their plan to establish a three-tier high school diploma system tied to student performance on state tests, and will start drafting changes to the regulations.
At a well-attended work session Thursday, the Board of Regents for Elementary and Secondary Education discussed the details of the plan, which differs significantly from the regulations the Regents approved in 2008.
Regent Colleen Callahan expressed concerns with the proposal, saying it places too much weight on the standardized tests, which were not designed to be high-stakes or to determine what kind of diploma a student receives.
“I’m worried about tests being the determining factor, as opposed to other parts of the system,” Callahan said, a reference to grades and student portfolios or projects.