Legislation that would require the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to pay at least 50 percent of the high-school equivalency testing fee will go to the floor next week at the Missouri House of Representatives. State Rep. Kathy Swan, R-Cape Girardeau, and State Rep. Elaine Gannon, R-DeSoto, are sponsoring combined House Bills 381 and 405. Swan said she expects the bills to be heard on the House floor Tuesday. In January 2014, Missouri changed from the GED test to the HiSET test for people wanting to earn their equivalency certificates. Although the HiSET test at $95 is less expensive than the new GED test, which can cost more than $120, it is more costly than the previous $40 GED. The increased cost is one reason for a decline in the number of people earning their certificates. Swan says after meeting with different groups she decided a better approach would be for the state to appropriate funds to assist with testing fees. The bills were amended and shortened, and Gannon will be handling the legislation on the floor. The bill would require the state to cover at least 50 percent of the testing fee for first-time test takers, or up to 100 percent of the cost, depending on appropriations.