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Aligning with K-12 Schools

Washington state has a strong history over the past 25 years of offering a robust dual enrollment program for academic transfer known as the Running Start program. While this program serves many students, it does not serve all students. It is important to grow dual enrollment opportunities so all students can take part in this opportunity to earn college credit.

In addition to expanding the population of students accessing dual credit coursework, we need to find ways to engage the significant percentage of Washington high school graduates not currently going on to higher education immediately after high school. By strengthening partnerships with the Office of the Superintendent of Instruction (OSPI), the Educational Service Districts (ESDs), and regional consortia like the Washington Alliance for Better Schools (WABS) and the Five Star Consortium, the community and technical college system can help more students achieve the educational credentials they need for their life and career goals.

Objectives and Strategies

The K-12 Alignment Work Group identified two objectives on which to focus its work, each with an emphasis of eliminating the equity gap:

  1. Increase the number of high school students participating in dual credit programs
  2. Increase the number of high school graduates enrolling in higher education directly after high school.

The work group developed three strategies to achieve these objectives:

Strategy A

Eliminate common barriers for historically underserved populations entering Running Start and College in the High School programs.

Strategy B

Expand Career and Technical Education, Running Start, and College in the High School through the mapping of additional Career and Technical Education courses to high school graduation requirements and utilizing the 2018 Career Connect Washington: Strategic Plan.

Strategy C

Establish a Community Engagement Framework that helps organizations identify common goals and methods that leverage shared governance to achieve and measure these goals. Community Engagement Frameworks are commonly used in public health with emphasis on historically underserved populations.

Expand All

Eliminate common barriers for historically underserved populations entering Running Start and College in the High School programs.

  • Provide college academic support services to high school students, including advising and guidance on education/career pathways planning, on their high school campuses.
  • High schools and colleges that are partnered to provide dual credit programs conduct a thorough review of existing dual credit policies between secondary and postsecondary institutions.
    • Policies should be reviewed through an equity lens to uncover whether current policy norms and practices affect enrollment or outcomes for historically underserved students in dual credit programs.
  • High schools and colleges continue to monitor the dual credit completions and further disaggregate the data to identify additional opportunities to educate and support historically underserved students.

Expand Dual Credit Career and Technical Education, Running Start, and College in the High School.

  • More broadly implementing the recommendations in the 2018 Career Connect Washington: Strategic Plan and increasing the availability of high school work-based apprenticeship programs.
  • Implement the Articulation and Transfer Council's (ATC) proposed changes that are supported by research:
    • Being intentional about inclusion and racial equality at all stages of legislative prioritization and engagement with policy makers.
    • Subsidizing dual enrollment costs like registration fees, textbooks and transportation
    • Allowing 9th grade students to participate in College in the High School courses
    • Funding college prep or bridge classes for high school students

Create a Community Engagement Framework at each college aimed at building localized, highly targeted community partnerships.

Highly targeted community partnerships could help increase the number of high school graduates enrolling in higher education directly after high school by promoting a more robust and pervasive college-going culture and focus in high schools.

The work group recommends that colleges develop a campus framework for identifying opportunities to increase community engagement and foster stronger community partnerships. Olympic College has been a leader in the creation and use of a Community Engagement Framework.

The Olympic College framework is designed to assist college leaders with the identifying and developing community partnerships that are advantageous to students and the community at large. Olympic College has found that engaging with targeted communities results in increased enrollments among the targeted affinity groups.

The work group recommends tracking the number of colleges using a Community Engagement Framework.

Metrics

Number of high school students participating in dual credit programs

Number of High School Students Participating in Dual Credit Programs: 2015-2016=33,564 total students, 6,092 historically underserved students of color; 2016-2017=34,862 total students, 6,857 historically underserved students of color; 2017-2018=37,605 total students, 8,022 historically underserved students of color; 2018-19=40,491 total students, 9,208 historically underserved students of color; 2019-20=42,400 total students, 10,202 historically underserved students of color.

The Number of High School Students Participating in Dual Credit programs diagram shows the number of high school students participating in dual credit programs over the last five years. Total dual credit students has grown from 33,564 in academic year 2015-16 to 42,400 in 2019-20. The number of dual credit historically underserved students of color has grown from 6,092 to 10,202.

Number of high school graduates enrolling in community and technical colleges directly after high school

Number of High School Graduates Enrolling in Community and Technical Colleges Directly After High School: 2015-16=97,137 total students, 26,535 historically underserved students of color; 2016-17=94,544 total students, 26,474 historically underserved students of color; 2017-18= 97,459, 28,204 historically underserved students of color; 2018-19= 96,420 total students, 28,982 historically underserved students of color; 2019-20=93,170 total students, 29,457 historically underserved students of color.

The Number of High School Graduates Enrolling in Community and Technical Colleges Directly After High School diagram shows the number of recent high school graduates enrolling in community and technical colleges over the last five years. Total recent high school graduates enrolled has fallen from 97,137 in academic year 2015-16 to 93,170 In 2019-20. The number of enrolled recent high school graduates from historically underserved students of color populations has grown from 26,535 to 29,457.

Page Manager: shagreen@sbctc.edu
Last Modified: 8/4/21, 10:04 AM

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