State of Washington
66th Legislature
2020 Regular Session
ByHouse Education (originally sponsored by Representatives Paul, Morgan, Valdez, Bergquist, Lekanoff, and Santos)
AN ACT Relating to establishing a running start summer school pilot program; amending RCW 28A.600.300 and 28A.600.320; adding a new section to chapter 28B.50 RCW; creating a new section; and providing expiration dates.
NEW SECTION.  Sec. 1. (1) The legislature finds that the successes of the running start program, a program that allows students to earn high school and college credit through courses taken at participating institutions of higher education, have enabled students throughout the state to meaningfully advance their secondary and postsecondary education goals. However, because running start program schedules are constrained by the academic calendar of the applicable high school, students are currently precluded from participating in running start programs during the summer academic term.
(2) The legislature finds that creating a summer term running start pilot program for students who have recently completed grade ten or eleven would result in numerous benefits, including providing students with additional opportunities to: Complete requirements for earning a high school diploma or an associate's degree; and explore college-level courses in a lower stress environment that does not include concurrent high school obligations. The expansion of these opportunities could be especially beneficial for students who:
(a) Need or want additional academic credit for high school requirements;
(b) Are interested in maximizing opportunities to earn college credit before graduating from high school;
(c) Have not determined what career and educational pathways to pursue after high school and wish to explore academic options; and
(d) May be the first in their family to attend an institution of higher education.
(3) The legislature, therefore, intends to establish a two-year running start summer school pilot program to provide qualifying students with the opportunity to earn high school and college credit through courses or programs offered by participating institutions of higher education during summer academic terms.
NEW SECTION.  Sec. 2. A new section is added to chapter 28B.50 RCW to read as follows:
(1) Subject to the availability of amounts appropriated for this specific purpose, the running start summer school pilot program is established in the college board.
The purpose of the pilot program is to provide any student who has completed grade ten or eleven and will be eligible to enroll in grade eleven or twelve in the subsequent school year with the opportunity to apply to a participating institution of higher education to enroll in and complete courses or programs offered by the institution during its summer academic term.
(2) The college board, in accordance with an application process developed by the college board for this purpose, and in consultation with the office of the superintendent of public instruction, must select three applicant institutions of higher education to participate in the pilot program. In making the selections, the college board must consider geographic diversity and efforts to serve a diversity of students, including those underserved by institutions of higher education. Students participating in the pilot program must be able to enroll in a course or program offered by an institution of higher education during a summer term no later than after the conclusion of the 2020-21 school year of the applicable high school. Institutions of higher education participating in the pilot program must agree to do so for a period of time that includes two consecutive summer academic terms.
(3) The pilot program established by this section is part of the running start program established in RCW 28A.600.300 through 28A.600.400. Unless the context clearly requires otherwise, the definitions and requirements established in RCW 28A.600.300 through 28A.600.400 apply to the running start summer school pilot program. In accordance with this subsection (3), "institution of higher education" has the same meaning as in RCW 28A.600.300.
(4) The college board shall report findings and recommendations from the pilot program, including recommending whether the program should be extended, to the governor and, in accordance with RCW 43.01.036, the education committees of the house of representatives and the senate by November 10, 2022.
(5) This section expires December 31, 2022.
Sec. 3. RCW 28A.600.300 and 2009 c 450 s 7 are each amended to read as follows:
(1) The program established in this section through RCW 28A.600.400, including the running start summer school pilot program established in section 2 of this act, shall be known as the running start program.
(2) For the purposes of RCW 28A.600.310 through 28A.600.400, "participating institution of higher education" or "institution of higher education" means:
(a) A community or technical college as defined in RCW 28B.50.030;
(b) A public tribal college located in Washington and accredited by the northwest commission on colleges and universities or another accrediting association recognized by the United States department of education; and
(c) Central Washington University, Eastern Washington University, Washington State University, and The Evergreen State College, if the institution's governing board decides to participate in the program in RCW 28A.600.310 through 28A.600.400.
Sec. 4. RCW 28A.600.320 and 2009 c 524 s 4 are each amended to read as follows:
(1) A school district shall provide general information about the program, including the running start summer school pilot program established in section 2 of this act, to all pupils in grades ten, eleven, and twelve and to the parents and guardians of those pupils((, including)). The information provided must include information about the opportunity to enroll in the program through online courses available at community and technical colleges and other state institutions of higher education and including the college high school diploma options under RCW 28B.50.535.
(2) To assist the district in planning, a pupil shall inform the district of the pupil's intent to enroll in courses at an institution of higher education for credit. Students are responsible for applying for admission to the institution of higher education.
NEW SECTION.  Sec. 5. Section 3 of this act expires December 31, 2022.
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