Running Start allows high school juniors and seniors to enroll in high school and community college at the same time, earning credits that apply to each institution. Students can earn up to 45 college credits per year while in high school. By attending the community college exclusively, they can attain the maximum.
Most Running Start students enroll in one or two college classes while still attending high school. Some students choose to take only college classes. In either case, the credits earned can meet both high school and college requirements. The high school district pays for the college tuition with a basic education allotment from the state, up to a specific limit of high school and college classes combined. The Running Start student pays all other consumable expenses, which include books, computer fee, parking, etc. Students enrolled in more than 15 credits will be assessed a tuition fee.
The high school district establishes high school graduation requirements. Working together, the high school and the college establish what college courses meet high school requirements. It is important that students know exactly what high school requirement will be met, if any, before enrolling in a college class. One five-credit course in college earns one high school credit regardless of whether it satisfies a requirement or not.
College credits earned through Running Start are transferable to colleges and universities in state, according to the guidelines of each specific institution. How courses transfer to out-of-state colleges can never be guaranteed, but to date there have been few problems. Contact those colleges for their own policies.
Mandatory orientations are held at the high schools each spring for fall quarter and on the college campus for winter (November) and spring quarters (February). These sessions are directed toward the tenth and eleventh grade students and provide an excellent opportunity to ask questions. Attendance is mandatory for any student who is planning on enrolling in Running Start anytime during the following school year.
You may review the new WVC Running Start Handbook for Students and Parents; please send corrections and/or feedback to Maria Christina Ortega, email@example.com.
The state's FAQ on Running Start are also available for further general information.
Homeschooling parents may review relevant information on Washington Homeschool Organization: http://www.washhomeschool.org/homeschooling/running.html.
Jamie McLaughlin Maria Christina Ortega
Coordinator Educational Planner
For Mandatory Running Start Orientation Online