House votes to raise Alabama dropout age to 17

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - A bill to raise the age when students in
Alabama can drop out of school from 16 to 17 has neared final
passage in the Alabama Legislature.

The bill sponsored by Republican Sen. Arthur Orr of Decatur
passed the House 91-3 Tuesday night.

The bill was amended in the House to include language that would
require 17-year-olds to get parental permission to drop out.

The bill returns to the Senate because of changes by the House.

Some House members expressed concern it would cost the state
more than $1 million a year for the 16-year-olds to stay in school.

But Democratic Rep. Thad McClammy of Montgomery said it would be
more expensive if the dropouts ended up in prison.

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