New county policies limit dual enrollment access

When the year began senior Mathew Murray could not want to take his four dual enrollment classes,  but once he was forced out of them due to already having his credits, he decided to take it up with his guidance counselor.

The new change affects students who take dual enrollment, and have all of their graduation requirements.

“My plan was to take two classes per semester, but then they cut it down, so I fought the system and got three classes back. It put me back a little in what I want to with my pre-medical prerequisites, and it screwed up my senior year a little,” senior Mathew Murray said.

Students who have open requirements to can still take whatever class they want, such as college algebra. However, students with all of their graduation requirements filled up cannot take dual enrollment.

Senior Katie Loveland. She got put into Calculus II, and forced out of her college algebra class. She was one of the only students to be forced out since she had already filled up all her math graduation credits.

“It is totally unnecessary [that I’m in Calculus II] and I am not a happy girl with this change, ” Loveland said.

With the new change, students find the process more confusing and challenging. After talking guidance counselor, they have to apply for the class and then actually get accepted, and all to find out they cannot take the class because they have all of their graduation requirements.

The reason behind this change lies in expenses. The school board and state decided that if all students have their graduation requirements, these students have no reason to take dual enrollment. The school pays for each student taking their dual enrollment classes, so from an academic standpoint the change keeps students from cheating their GPA by taking classes just to boost it, and also limits the amount of money spent on Dual Enrollment.

“It is not very fair on other students if the school pays for a student’s classes above the graduation requirements,” Guidance counselor Charlotte Barolet said.

Previously college and universities paid for most of the $58 million tuition for dual enrollment in Florida, with the counties paying to cover the remainder of that expense. Now with the new change, school districts will have to pay $30 million on average.

However, dual enrollment is a way for students to experience college while still at high school. Each course taken by the student counts as high school and college credit. Students can still take a range of courses from algebra to American literature. \

Dual enrollment is available at Seminole State College and at the University of Central Florida. Available courses can be found on The Dual Enrollment-High School Subject Area Equivalency List on the website.

To apply a student has to talk to their guidance counselor and confirm with the college counselors. Students must maintain an un-weighted 3.0 GPA and a minimum score on a common college placement test such as SAT.

Students cannot take more than six dual enrollment credits per semester, and will only be administered during periods five and six.

The new change allows for fiercer competition among students who do not try to inflate their GPA, but also limits students who have all of their Graduation requirements, while also giving students a chance to try college classes.