Dual Enrollment - State Profile

Dual Enrollment - State Profile - Washington

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Methodology:
This information was collected from state statutes, rules and regulations, and state education agency Web sites. A profile was sent to each state for review and modification, as needed.

Last updated: December 2013

Data compiled by Jennifer Dounay Zinth: 303.299.3689 or jdounay@ecs.org.
 

Program Basics
Statewide policy in place Yes
Definition or title of program State has multiple programs:

Dual Credit is generally defined as a program, administered by either an institution of higher education, a high school, or contractual agreement between the two, through which 11th and 12th graders apply to a participating institution of higher education to enroll in courses or programs and simultaneously earn high school and college credit.

Running Start allows students to apply to a participating institution of higher education to enroll in courses or programs offered by the institution.

College in the High School programs, governed by a local contract between the district and the institution of higher education, allow students to earn high school and college credit.

Community and technical colleges may contract with local common school districts to provide occupational and academic programs for high school students.

The state also has a participation in high school completion pilot program that allows a student under age 21 who has completed all graduation requirements except exit exam requirements to enroll in courses or a program of study made available by a participating community or technical college.

Unless otherwise noted, policies in this profile refer to dual credit generally, Running Start, or College in the High School.
Where courses provided Dual Credit:
  • Not specified
Running Start:
  • At high school
  • At postsecondary institution
  • Virtual program. Students may take Running Start, University of Washington extension, Washington Online, and other online programs for college credit.
College in the High School:
  • Not specified
Postsecondary and/or secondary credit earned All programs: Both
Students may take developmental/remedial courses through dual enrollment program Running Start: No

College in the High School: Not set in state policy
CTE component Dual Credit generally: Yes. Community and technical colleges are required to establish agreements with high schools and skill centers to offer dual high school and college credit for secondary CTE courses, and may create dual credit agreements with high schools and skill centers located outside the college district boundary or service area. If a community or technical college has created an agreement with a high school or skill center to offer college credit for a secondary CTE course, all community and technical colleges must accept the course for an equal amount of college credit. All approved preparatory secondary CTE programs must either allow students to earn dual credit for high school and college through Tech Prep, Advanced Placement, or other agreements or programs, or lead to a certificate or credential that is state or nationally recognized by trades, industries, or other professional associations as necessary for employment or advancement in that field.

The office of the superintendent of public instruction, the workforce training and education coordinating board, the state board for community and technical colleges, and the council of presidents shall work with local school districts, workforce education programs in colleges, tech prep consortia, and four-year institutions of higher education to develop model career and technical education programs of study, by definition, include opportunities for students to earn dual high school and college credit.

The office of the superintendent of public instruction must develop and conduct an ongoing CTE campaign to increase awareness among teachers, counselors, students, parents, principals, school administrators, and the general public about the opportunities offered by rigorous CTE programs. Messages in the campaign must emphasize CTE as a high quality educational pathway for students, including for students who seek advanced education that includes a bachelor's degree or beyond. The office must include in the campaign information about CTE course equivalencies and dual credit for high school and college.

Subject to funds appropriated for this purpose, the superintendent of public instruction must periodically review and approve district CTE plans. To receive approval, a district plan must demonstrate that approved CTE programs maximize opportunities for students to earn dual credit for high school and college. The office of the superintendent of public instruction is also required to establish performance measures and targets and monitor the performance of CTE programs in specified areas, including students earning dual credit for high school and college. If a school district fails to meet the performance targets, the office of the superintendent of public instruction may require the district to submit an improvement plan. If a district fails to implement an improvement plan or continues to fail to meet the performance targets for three consecutive years, the office of the superintendent of public instruction may use this failure as the basis to deny the approval or reapproval of one or more of the district's CTE programs.

Running Start: Yes. Students may enroll in vocational or nonvocational coursework.
 
Unique characteristics Running Start: Home-schooled and private school students may also participate. Once a pupil has been enrolled in a postsecondary course or program, the student may not be displaced by another student. Once a pupil has been enrolled in a postsecondary course or program, the student may not be displaced by another student.

A community or technical college may issue a high school diploma or certificate. A Running Start participant who completes an associate’s degree must be awarded a high school diploma from the college upon written request from the student.

Dual credit generally: 2013 H.B. 1642 encourages each local board to adopt an academic acceleration policy for high school students, under which the district automatically enrolls each student who meets the state standard on the high school statewide student assessment in the next most rigorous level of advanced courses offered by the high school. Students who successfully complete such an advanced course are then enrolled in the next most rigorous advanced course, with the objective that students will eventually be automatically enrolled in courses that offer the opportunity to earn dual credit for high school and college. Districts must notify students and parents regarding the academic acceleration policy and the advanced courses available to students, and provide parents an opportunity to opt out of the academic acceleration policy and enroll a student in an alternative course.

The 2013 legislation, subject to appropriation of funds, also establishes the academic acceleration incentive program, to award funds to support teacher training, curriculum, technology, examination fees, and other costs associated with offering dual credit courses (i.e., College in the High School, Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, Cambridge Advanced International Certificate of Education Examination (AICE), Tech Prep, online courses). Running Start students do not generate an incentive award. Half of appropriated funds must be awarded via competitive grants on a one-time basis for high schools to expand the availability of dual credit courses. (To be eligible, districts must have adopted an academic acceleration policy.) Priority in awarding grants must be given high schools with a high proportion of low-income students, and high schools seeking to develop new capacity for dual credit courses rather than proposing marginal expansion of current capacity. The remaining half of funds must be awarded districts as an incentive award for each student who earned dual credit for courses offered by the district’s high schools in the previous school year. Districts must distribute the award to the high schools that generated the funds. The award amount for free- and reduced-price lunch students who earn dual credits must be set at 125% of the base award for other students. A student who earns more than one dual credit in the same school year counts only once for the purposes of the incentive award. The office of the superintendent of public instruction must report to the education policy committees and the fiscal committees of the legislature, by January 1st of each year, information about the demographics of the students earning dual credits in the schools receiving grants under this section for the prior school year.

Institutions of higher education are encouraged to review their policies and procedures regarding financial aid for students enrolled in dual credit programs (i.e., programs administered by a high school or postsecondary institution for 11th and 12th graders to enroll in an institution’s courses or programs and earn high school and college credit). Institutions are also encouraged to implement policies and procedures providing students enrolled in dual credit programs with the same access to institutional aid, including all educational expenses, as provided to resident undergraduate students.

Each institution of higher education, including technical colleges, must deposit a minimum of 3 ½% of revenues collected from tuition and services and activities fees in a locally-held institutional financial aid fund. Moneys in the fund must be used only for specified purposes, including to provide financial aid to high school students enrolled in dual credit programs. Moneys from this fund may be used for all educational expenses related to a student's participation in a dual credit program including tuition, fees, course materials, and transportation.

The office of the superintendent of public instruction must compile information about online learning programs for high school students to earn college credit and place the information on its website. Examples of information to be compiled and placed on the website include links to purveyors of online learning programs, comparisons among various types of programs regarding costs or awarding of credit, advantages and disadvantages of online learning programs, and other general assistance and guidance for students, teachers, and counselors in selecting and considering online learning programs. The office must use the expertise of its Digital Learning Department and Washington Online to provide assistance and suggest resources.

The superintendent of public instruction and the office of student financial assistance must develop advising guidelines to assure that students and parents understand that college credits earned in high school dual credit programs may impact eligibility for financial aid.

A high school that demonstrates improvement in its dropout prevention score in comparison to baseline school year may receive a PASS program award. The office of the superintendent of public instruction must determine the amount of PASS program awards based on appropriated funds and eligible high school, to provide an award to each eligible high school commensurate with the degree of improvement in the high school's dropout prevention score and the high school’s size. A high school must use 90% of an award for dropout prevention activities, which the school principal must determine after consultation with parents and certified school staff. Among the activities for which a school may use PASS funds are (1) Outreach and counseling to students identified as at risk of dropping out of school, or who have dropped out of school, to encourage them to consider alternatives such as running start and other options for completing a high school diploma, and (2) Preapprenticeship programs or running start for the trades initiatives.

Districts in Washington and community colleges in Idaho and Oregon may enter into cooperative agreements to allow 11th and 12th grade students to earn high school and postsecondary credit. Such agreements must adhere to RCW 28A.600.310 through .360 and 28A.600.380 through .400. A district agreement may allow the community college to accept an amount less than the statewide uniform rate set in RCW 28A.600.310(2) if the community college does not charge students tuition and fees. To the extent feasible, such agreements must permit students to attend the community college without paying tuition or fees. Agreements may not permit community colleges to charge nonresident tuition and fee rates. Agreements must ensure that students may enroll only in courses transferable to the Washington two-year, tribal and select four-year institutions from which students in traditional dual enrollment programs would earn postsecondary credits.

The state’s Student Achievement Council must collaborate with the appropriate state agencies and stakeholders, including the state board of education, the office of the superintendent of public instruction, the state board for community and technical colleges, the workforce training and education coordinating board, and the four-year institutions of higher education to improve student transitions and success including recommending policies that require coordination between or among sectors such as dual high school-college programs, and awarding college credit for advanced high school work.
Access
Offering mandatory or voluntary All programs: Voluntary

Dual Credit generally: While offering of dual credit is voluntary, 2013 legislation encourages each local board to adopt an academic acceleration policy for high school students, under which the district automatically enrolls each student who meets the state standard on the high school statewide student assessment in the next most rigorous level of advanced courses offered by the high school. Students who successfully complete such an advanced course are then enrolled in the next most rigorous advanced course, with the objective that students will eventually be automatically enrolled in courses that offer the opportunity to earn dual credit for high school and college. The legislation provides funds
College partners can be 2-year/4-year/both Dual Credit: Both

Running Start: Two-year and select four-year institutions if the governing board decides to participate (Central Washington University, Eastern Washington University, Washington State University, and the Evergreen State College are authorized. The Evergreen State College does not participate at this time). Accredited tribal colleges may also participate.

College in the High School: Both. Accredited tribal colleges may also participate.
Student eligibility requirements Dual Credit:
  • Not specified
Running Start:
  • Meet entrance requirements set by postsecondary institution
  • Student in grades 11-12
College in the High School:
  • Not specified. The high school and institution of higher education together define student eligibility criteria.
  • Student in grades 11-12
Cap on number of credits students may earn Running Start: Yes. Running Start dollars will fund no more than a maximum of 15 quarter credits (1.0 FTE) per term, assuming no more than .2 FTE enrollment in the high school. A student first enrolling in grade 11 may not take more than the equivalent of two years' coursework; a student first enrolling in grade 12 may not take more than the equivalent of one year's coursework.

College in the High School: Not set in state policy
Students/parents must be notified of dual enrollment opportunities Programs generally: Yes. Each high school and any other school serving grade 9 must deliver to each parent of a student in any grades 9-12 information about entrance requirements and availability of local programs offering college credit, including Running Start, College in the High School, Advanced Placement, Tech-Prep, skill centers, and International Baccalaureate programs. The information may be included with other information the school regularly mails to parents. In addition, each senior high school and any other public school that includes 9th grade must include the names and contact information of other public or private entities offering such programs to its 9th through 12th grade students if the school has knowledge of such entities.

In addition, high schools must ensure that parents and students have opportunities to learn about online learning programs, such as Running Start, University of Washington extension, Washington Online, and other programs and providers that meet qualifications to offer courses that high schools may accept for credit toward graduation requirements or that offer courses generally accepted for credit by public institutions of higher education in Washington. High schools must also ensure teachers and counselors have information about these online learning programs and are able to assist parents and students in accessing the information.

Running Start: Yes. Districts must provide general information about Running Start to all students in grades 10-12 and to their parents, including information about the opportunity to enroll in the program through online courses available at community and technical colleges and other state institutions of higher education.

College in the High School: Yes. Participating districts must provide general information about the College in the High School program to all students in grades 10-12 and to those students’ parents.
Counseling/advising is made available to students Running Start: Yes. Institutions of higher education, in collaboration with relevant student associations, must aim for students who can benefit from fee waivers for low-income students to take advantage of these waivers. Institutions must make every effort to communicate to students/families the benefits of the waivers and provide assistance to students/families on how to apply. To the greatest extent possible, institutions must: (1) Incorporate information about waivers into financial aid counseling, admission information, and individual billing statements, and (2) use all means of communication, including web sites, online catalogues, admission and registration forms, mass e-mail messaging, social media, and outside marketing to ensure that information about waivers is visible, compelling, and reaches the maximum number of eligible students and families.

College in the High School: Not set in state policy
Finance
Who is primarily responsible for paying tuition Running Start: Combination of state and student/parent, although funds paid by the state through districts are not deemed tuition or operating fees. The superintendent of public instruction allocates funds appropriated for basic education to school districts for purposes of making payments to postsecondary institutions, and for granting school districts 7% thereof to offset program related costs. Each participating district transmits to the institution of higher education an amount per each full-time equivalent college student at statewide uniform rates for vocational and nonvocational students. The superintendent of public instruction, participating institutions of higher education, and the state board for community and technical colleges shall consult on the calculation and distribution of the funds.

At community or technical colleges, in lieu of tuition and fees, students pay all other mandatory fees. The state board for community and technical colleges may authorize a fee of up to 10% of tuition and fees. All other institutions of higher education may charge students a fee of up to 10% of tuition and fees, in addition to technology fees, in lieu of tuition and fees. In both instances, fees must be prorated based on credit load.

Institutions must make fee waivers available to low-income students, and establish written policies to determine low-income students before offering the fee waiver. Institutions must make every effort to communicate to students and their families the benefits of the waivers and provide assistance to students and their families on how to apply. Information about waivers must, to the greatest extent possible, be incorporated into financial aid counseling, admission information, and individual billing statements. Institutions also must, to the greatest extent possible, use all means of communication, including websites, online catalogues, admission and registration forms, mass e-mail messaging, social media, and outside marketing to ensure that information about waivers is visible, compelling, and reaches the maximum number of eligible students and families.

In 2018, the joint legislative audit and review committee must complete a systematic performance audit of the tuition-setting authority granted to the governing boards of four-year public institutions of higher education, in order to evaluate the impact of institutional tuition-setting authority on student access, affordability, and institutional quality. The audit must include an evaluation of the various outcomes for each four-year institution of higher education, including changes in enrollments in the Running Start and other dual enrollment programs. The audit must also include recommendations on whether to continue tuition-setting authority beyond the 2018-19 academic year. In conducting the audit, the auditor must solicit input from key higher education stakeholders, including students and their families.

College in the High School: Not specified. The institution of higher education may charge tuition to participating students.
How state funds participating high schools Running Start: Reduced funding

College in the High School: Equal
How state funds participating postsecondary institutions Running Start: Reduced funding. The college receives 93% of basic education funding for the portion of eligible FTE, with 7% retained by local school districts to offset program-related costs.

College in the High School: Not specified
Ensuring Program Quality
Instructor qualifications component Running Start: Courses taught by postsecondary faculty

College in the High School: Yes. Full-time and part-time faculty at institutions of higher education, including adjunct faculty, are eligible to teach program courses.
Program reporting requirement All programs: Yes. The office of the superintendent of public instruction, in collaboration with the state board for community and technical colleges, the Washington state apprenticeship and training council, the workforce training and education coordinating board, the student achievement council, the public baccalaureate institutions, and the education data center must annually report to the education and higher education committees of the legislature regarding participation in dual credit programs (including but not limited to Running Start, College in the High School, Tech Prep, International Baccalaureate, Advanced Placement, and Cambridge program. The report must include:
  • Data on student participation rates and academic performance
  • Data on the total unduplicated head count of students enrolled in at least one dual credit program course
  • The percentage of students who enrolled in at least one dual credit program as percent of all students enrolled in grades 9-12.
Data must be disaggregated by race/ethnicity, gender, and receipt of free/reduced-price lunch.

The office of the superintendent of public instruction must also annually report to the education policy committees and the fiscal committees of the legislature, information about the demographics of the students earning dual credits in the schools receiving grants for the prior school year through the academic acceleration program, to support costs associated with offering dual credit courses (i.e., College in the High School, Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, Cambridge Advanced International Certificate of Education Examination (AICE), Tech Prep, online courses) Running Start students do not generate an incentive grant award but are included in annual reports.

In addition to the data on student enrollment in dual credit courses mentioned above, the office of the superintendent of public instruction must collect and post on the Washington state report card website the rates at which students earn college credit through a dual credit course (i.e., 3 or higher on AP exam, 4 or higher on IB exam, students who successfully complete a Cambridge advanced international certificate of education (AICE) exam, students who successfully complete a course through the College in the High School program, students who satisfy the dual enrollment and class performance requirements to earn college credit through a Tech Prep course, and students who successfully complete a Running Start course.

College in the High School: The institution of higher education must maintain participant enrollment information separately from other enrollment information. The institution may not include enrollees in official enrollment reports, nor may such persons be considered in any enrollment statistics that would affect higher education budgetary determinations.

Program evaluation component All programs: Not set in state policy
Transferability
Public postsecondary institutions required to accept credits Running Start: Yes. Running Start courses in the general transfer agreement are recognized in the same manner as traditional postsecondary courses. However, each public instiution in the state varies in general distribution requirements.

College in the High School: Not set in state policy

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