State Rep. Bronna Kahle’s plan to expand dual enrollment access for high school students seeking summer education opportunities was unanimously approved by the Legislature and now moves to the governor’s desk to be considered for state law.
Currently, Michigan high school students may take approved postsecondary classes and are eligible for tuition reimbursement; however, students taking classes in the summer months are limited in reimbursement eligibility because the course must be within the school calendar year.
Kahle’s plan would allow high school students, if approved by the local school district, to have greater access to college dual enrollment opportunities and receive reimbursement for postsecondary classes taken during the summer months when high schools are not in session.
“We must be creative and proactive and give students every opportunity for future success,” said Kahle, of Adrian. “There are thousands of excellent jobs available in Michigan, and we must help our young people acquire the skills needed to fill them. The Legislature has worked hard to fill the ‘talent gap’ and this plan expanding dual enrollment opportunities is another positive step in the right direction.”
Kahle consistently supports greater investments in students and CTE programs. She has voted for record investments in K-12 students in every year she’s held office, including more than $15 billion overall in the current budget year.
The legislation also includes a provision in the wake of the COVID crisis allowing high school seniors seeking to participate in dual enrollment in the fall to be eligible with a GPA over 2.5, rather than the typically required SAT scores. This change affects the upcoming school year only and is in response to the interruption of standardized testing during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Rep. Kahle worked with students, families, and education professionals and experts to develop the plan. In September, she testified in support of the legislation before the House Education Committee along with Kyle Griffith, Assistant Superintendent of Instruction and General Services at the Lenawee Intermediate School District.
“The passing of these bills is a significant victory for students and their families across the state,” said Griffith. “If signed into law, this measure will allow students to have a conversation about how taking college courses in the summer may help them advance and prepare for postsecondary success.
“By having the ability to take courses during times when their high school is not in session, students will increase the number of credits they can take, ultimately reducing the amount of debt families face while pursuing a postsecondary degree or credentials. These bills will positively impact the Michigan Department of Education’s ‘Top 10 in 10 Years’ goal for postsecondary attainment for all students.”
The plan retains the current formula for students taking courses when school is in session and requires the MDE to publish guidelines for determining the reimbursement for students taking courses outside of high school session.