OLYMPIA – Students would have more opportunities to receive college credit while attending high school under a proposal approved by the House of Representatives today. The bill, sponsored by Rep. Chris Reykdal (D-Tumwater) passed the House 53-45.
“Providing more access and opportunity to higher education is one of the best investments we can make for our students,” said Reykdal. “Right now, too many students aren’t given a fair chance at those opportunities, but it doesn’t have to be this way. Expanding access to higher education is exactly what we need to ensure our students can compete in a 21st Century economy.”
Washington state currently offers two dual credit programs for high school juniors and seniors:
- Running Start – Allows high school students to take tuition free college-level classes on college campuses.
- College in the High School – Provides college-level courses taught by college-certified teachers in the high school.
Under HB 1546:
- Dual credit opportunities would expand to include students in grade 10.
- Students in grade 8 and 9 would be notified about dual credit opportunities.
- Subsidies would be created for low-income students to help pay for College in the High School costs.
- Families could use GET credits to pay for costs of taking college-level courses in high school.
- Legislative intent is clarified regarding the two dual credit programs.
“Expanding dual credit opportunities so we can reach more students is a win-win for everyone,” said Reykdal.
The bill now goes to the Senate for further consideration.