Kirtland Community College is ready to help high-school students take advantage of a new federal education law designed to expand dual enrollment. The law will result in increased state and local investment of federal funds for college courses in high schools, according to the sole national accrediting body for concurrent enrollment partnerships, the National Alliance of Concurrent Enrollment Partnerships in Chapel Hill, NC.
The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), signed by President Obama in early December, encourages greater utilization of dual and concurrent enrollment programs as a critical strategy to raise the rigor of high school curriculum and prepare students for college. Sections of ESSA enable states and local education agencies to utilize federal funds to support college coursework for:
- students attending schools in need of improvement (Title I)
- students attending high-poverty schools (Title I)
- low-income students attending private schools (Title I)
- teacher professional development (Title II)
- English language acquisition (Title III), and
- academic enrichment (Title IV)
Julie Lavender, vice president of Kirtland’s Instructional Services, said Kirtland is ready to offer opportunities to students in surrounding communities.
“The new law provides supplemental support, making dual enrollment available to more students,” she said. “Schools are required by state law to pay for this. There is no cost to students. The new law should help to make these options even more accessible than before.”
Kirtland already has dual enrollment partnerships with: Houghton Lake, Roscommon, Fairview, Mio, and Gaylord high schools.
Kirtland also has an Early Middle College partnership with the Iosco Regional Educational Service Agency in Tawas. Students participate in a “13th year” program, at the end of which they earn both their high-school diploma and an associate degree. There was enough interest for two separate programs: one at IRESA in Tawas serving Tawas, Hale, Whittemore Prescott, and another at Oscoda HS.
“We encourage all of our local school districts to partner with Kirtland to find solutions to provide affordable, college education opportunities to high school students,” Lavender said.
For more information, visit www.kirtland.edu or www.nacep.org.