Jonathan Alder likely to partner with Ashland University for College Credit Plus

(Posted Dec. 13, 2019)

By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor

Jonathan Alder Local Schools plans to partner with Ashland University to provide students with new options for earning college credit while in high school.

Misty Swanger, assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction, outlined the proposal at the Dec. 9 school board meeting. The board will vote on the proposal at their Jan. 13 meeting.

“We’re trying to find a better fit for our students for College Credit Plus,” Swanger said. By law, all Ohio public high schools must offer students opportunities to earn college credits.

The goal with the Ashland University partnership is two-fold, Swanger said. One, the district wants to offer students access to college courses that are more rigorous than some of the options they have now. Two, the district wants to offer those classes on-site at the high school so students can stay connected with their high school experience rather than spending part of their school days off-site at a college campus.

Currently, Jonathan Alder is partnering with Clark State Community College and Columbus State Community College for College Credit Plus. Some of the courses are taught at the high school, some online, and some at the respective college campuses. Some courses combine these various forms of instruction.

The partnership with Ashland University would provide options that would be taught at the high school. Ashland plans to send adjunct professors to Jonathan Alder High School to teach classes. Additionally, Jonathan Alder teachers can become certified through Ashland to serve as adjunct professors. Some of the instruction would be presented online.

Two pathways are planned: a general studies program and a business concentration. Currently, the high school does not offer business classes.

The general studies classes would include Composition 1, Composition 2, Principals of Sociology, and General Psychology, each worth three college credits.

The proposed business classes would include Elementary Statistics, Calculus I, Principles of Marketing, and Introduction to Management, each worth three college credits.

Both pathways would include a mandatory college and career readiness seminar.

If the school board approves the partnership, registration for classes would run through the spring. Interested students would be required to first apply to the program and be accepted, a rule of College Credit Plus. The deadline to register for classes would be May 1. Classes would start with the 2020-21 school year.

Swanger said the classes would be open to seniors and possibly juniors. Details are still being worked out.

Public high schools are required to cover the costs of College Credit Plus classes. Ohio law sets those costs. They are: $166.55 per credit hour for classes taken on the college campus or through the college’s online portal; $83.28 per credit hour for classes taught by a college professor on the high school campus; $41.64 per credit hour for classes taught at the high school by high school teachers certified as adjunct professors.

The more College Credit Plus classes taught at the high school, and especially by high school teachers, the more money the district can save, Swanger said.

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