Big Walnut High School is expanding its “College Credit Plus” program.
Academic achievement director Jen Young made that announcement that during the Jan. 21 school board meeting.
Historically, Big Walnut High students were able to earn early college credits at the high school by taking Advanced Placement (AP) courses or through post-secondary education options — leaving the high school campus and taking courses at nearby colleges and universities.
While college credit can be earned without leaving the high school campus through either AP courses or the College Credit Plus (CC+) Program, Young said there are distinct differences between the two programs.
“In order for a student to receive credit for an AP course, he or she must pass the course as well as the corresponding college board AP test,” Young said. “Students enrolled in College Credit Plus only have to pass the class in order to receive college credit. In addition, students in our College Credit Plus program are able to take courses that we offer on our campus, as well as courses offered at any college or university off-campus.”
Young said this school year Big Walnut High’s CC+ courses are World Civilizations 1 and 2, as well as English composition 1.
“During the 2016-17 school year, through College Credit Plus, we will offer a college-level course in all four of the core areas — English composition 1 and 2, World Civilizations 1 and 2, college algebra and biology,” Young said.
Young said all CC+ courses offered in-house next year are being taught by Big Walnut teachers in conjunction with a faculty member from Columbus State Community College.
“In the past we have found that our students were somewhat reluctant to take courses through the College Credit Plus program for two reasons — either they did not want to leave our campus in order to travel to a college, or they were uncomfortable with an unknown instructor,” Young said. “By partnering with Columbus State, we are able to bring the courses to our campus and use our own teachers.”
Young said that while students pay a fee for AP course tests, there is no cost to families for students to take the College Credit Plus courses; and in accordance with the state of Ohio’s transfer assurance guide, all of the college-level courses offered at Big Walnut High are guaranteed to transfer to any public university in the state. While it’s not mandated, Young said the courses would transfer to many private and out-of-state universities as well.
“College Credit Plus is truly a win-win for Big Walnut families,” Young added. “We’re able to provide our students with advanced, rigorous, college-level courses, and our students are able to graduate high school with free college credit already earned. We’re excited about the doors this opens for our students, and are looking forward to seeing how this program will grow in the future.”