$1.75 million saved by BHS students thanks to dual enrollment program
What started on paper as a Seniors-to-Sophomores grant initiative in 2007 has actually enabled many Bellefontaine High School students to achieve that status. Through the district’s Dual Enrollment Program, students can transition directly from the ranking of high school senior to college sophomore. Better yet, all this can be achieved without leaving the halls of BHS. In other words, students are able to walk across the graduation platform with a high school diploma in one hand and a college transcript in the other. This equates to saving lots of time and money — two valuable commodities.
Bellefontaine High School continues to be a state leader in the early college credit initiative. Students jumpstart their college careers by choosing from a menu of college class options. These challenging college level classes are taught at BHS with a specially trained BHS instructor. Better yet, the students earn college credit at a fraction of the cost. Over the eight years the program has been in existence, Bellefontaine has partnered with multiple universities including University of Findlay, Urbana University, Clark State Community College, and Wright State University.
Approved high school instructors meet the university requirements to qualify as adjunct professors. In turn, they work with the college professor to assure that the curriculum and assessments are aligned with the college equivalent course. “After eight years of dual enrollment at BHS we still take the alignment of classes with the college curriculum very seriously. We want to provide the college credit to our students but more importantly we want to prepare them for what is ahead. The benefit to our students is incredible both in the credits they have when they enroll and also in their success once they are there” says Kristy Mount dual enrollment instructor in Chemistry and Physics.
During the 2014-2015 academic year, BHS offered 19 dual enrollment college courses. Currently 167 students are earning credit for a total of 336 college courses. At an average of four semester hours per course these students collectively accumulated 1,409 credit hours before stepping on a college campus. At an approximate cost of $300 per semester hour, students and parents have saved over $400,000 this year alone. In the eight years the program has been in existence, over 1,400 courses have been completed by students at a monetary value of over $1,750,000!
- Written by Angie Haver, Bellefontaine High School guidance counselor