Board approves changes in dual enrollment

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, May 14, 2003

In 1997, the Alabama State Department of Education passed a law which allowed high school students to pursue high school credit and college credit at the same time.

During Monday's regular meeting of the Andalusia City Board of Education, Superintendent Pete Kelley said there has been a similar policy in place in the Andalusia system targeted for seniors, and also during Monday's session the board approved an addition to this policy.

"Instead of taking a (high school) course that may not may not mean as much to them, (the students) could go out to LBW Junior College and take a college course and get credit for it," said Kelley.

He said the program, though, is new to Andalusia High School, and the system has reached an agreement with LBW, where the system will furnish a teacher who is qualified to teach both high school and college courses.

"This (program) will apply to the advanced program English class next school year at Andalusia High School and this is the first class we want to use with the program," said Kelley.

"(The students) will pay their tuition to LBW if they so desire to earn college credit. They will have to do extra work. If they are able to handle that workload, they will earn credit for their English 101 class at college."

Kelley said in the future, the advanced program may also expand to be implemented for other courses, but noted that would call for teachers who are extremely qualified.

"(High school students) won't be able to handle too many of (the advanced courses) at one time because they have their other responsibilities on the high school level," said Kelley. "We figure that one (advanced) course is all they can take, but we would look (at additional courses) later."

In terms of compensation for the teachers, Kelley said the system will proceed in paying him or her their salary, but then based on (LBW's) salary schedule, (the junior college) would reimburse the Andalusia School System for the day that the teacher teaches that advanced course.

"(The compensation provided by the junior college) will then go into our general fund to be used for supplies," said Kelley.

Kelley said teacher Dawn Thompson is qualified to teach the advanced English course, and added that most of the details have been finalized to allow the program.

"(Andalusia High School Principal Daniel Shakespeare) will be the monitor for the program at the high school," said Kelley.

He noted that another option with the program allows students to take the college course without receiving college credit, but they would still have to pay for the course.

"I don't know why (that option) is there, but it is a standard policy," said Kelley.

Eligibility requirements for students to participate in the dual enrollment program include:

The student must have a B average in completed high school courses.

The student must have written approval of the principal and the superintendent of education.

The student must be a senior.

The student must meet the entrance requirements established by the participating college/post secondary institution.

The payment of the current rate of tuition and fees per credit hour, textbooks and materials will be the responsibility of the student and full payment of tuition must be completed by the first day of class.

The policy also states that post secondary courses will be classified as electives at the high school, and those courses will be used in the class rank calculation at the high school. It also notes that while a student may earn post secondary credit for college, this credit will not substitute for high school requirements.

Students are urged to apply for the dual enrollment program prior to the end of the current school year.