In our area, we approach this problem (or opportunity) a little
differently...rather than speeding up high school, we speed up college! More
or less. See the following description of "Running Start". (We are in
When kids are juniors in high school, they can sign up for a program at
the community college called "Running Start". Students fulfill their
highschool requirements, and also, at the same time are getting college
credit for those same classes. I know, I know. It doesn't make sense!! But
they are doing college level work, is the premise.
Some kids actually get their AA degree by the time they graduate from
highschool. They can take just a few classes at the CC, or they can take all
of them there. Most kids take a few classes at the CC and the rest at their
The main thing is, the RS classes are all free...part of public school
education. Eventually, when they graduate from highschool (and a bit of
college for most of them), they have some basic college classes taken care
of. Only our state colleges accept the credits as true college credits (big
savings for college years!), and most private schools count them as extra
college credit, but not as fulfilling requirements. Still, it all adds up.
My daughter went to the University of Washington with her entire Freshman
year already "paid for" and complete because of Running Start. She started
as a sophomore at the U. This saved us something like $11,000 at the time,
and would be more in today's college market.
This is a good program to challenge kids who are ready, and more mature. But
you know who really likes it? The "alternative type kids"... the ones some
people would write off as non-achievers...these kids just don't fit into
highschool as we know it...but they thrive in community college with more
freedom to come and go and with expectations on their own shoulders. No one
telling them to show up or turn stuff in. In college, you either do it or
you don't, it's up to you. They seem to respond to the freedom to achieve.
Oh, there are no requirements to sign up - nothing you have to get in like
certain grades or need-base or anything...just be a highschool student.
Homeschool kids get into this program no problem. It's for anyone working on
highschool credits towards graduation.
In a message dated 6/25/03 11:44:26 PM, STeacherkipp@aol.com writes:
<< Would you want to send your 16 year old child off to college? >>
Only if they lived at home. Why put kids in an unfair situation? They may
have been reading at two, and may well be able to compete intellectually and
academically, but what's the rush? Pressures around sex, alcohol, and
may be easier to handle when you go home at night to loving (read vigilant)
parents. Hooking up with a "sex buddy" and deaths from alcohol poisoning
all too common.
MaryAnn F. Kohl
Bright Ring Publishing, Inc.
PO Box 31338
Bellingham, WA 98228-3338