Pharos-Tribune

September 5, 2013

OUR VIEW: Dual credit the way to go


Pharos-Tribune

---- — The increasing cost of a college education and the ever-growing debt it dumps on students have dominated headlines for some time now. At the same time, headlines touting the increased need for a college education are fighting for attention.

And our students have long been left in the wake. Do they suck it up and take on the debt to get a better job later or do they take their chances at the workforce now and live debt-free?

But fortunately for Logansport High School and Century Career Center students, the equation is continually being tilted in their favor thanks to the dual-credit program.

And when we checked in this week to see how the program is going, we learned the students are overwhelmingly taking advantage of the courses.

During the 2012 school year, the number of dual credits offered jumped from 36 to 107. That same school year, 370 students earned a total of 1,464 dual credits.

Of the dual credits offered, 90 percent have no charge. That equates to well over $200,000 not spent on tuition later.

But it’s not just about the money.

Another education issue getting its fair share of headlines is college readiness, or rather the lack of it. The Indiana Commission for Higher Education’s research shows that 32 percent of the state’s high school graduating class of 2011 required a remedial course in college the following year.

Those numbers prompted many schools across the state to take a hard look at their college prep. For our students locally, the dual-credit program takes the idea of college readiness to a higher level. It’s not only ensuring they are ready to do college-level work, it has them actually doing college-level work.

So for the students engaged in these classes at the high school level, the transition to college won’t be the culture shock many will face. Many students get to college only to find it’s not all fun and games like Hollywood too often portrays.

Postsecondary education is rigorous, and doing college-level work in high school will only serve our local students well once they get to college. Having these courses under their belt, our students will be less likely to succumb to the pressure like many first-year college students do.

We’re proud of the programs our schools are offering and of the students who have stepped up to take the challenge.

Schools across the region would do well to take note and follow suit.

THE ISSUE Dual-credit courses at Logansport High School and the Century Career Center OUR VIEW The schools are setting a good example for others to follow.