2SHB 1973

This analysis was prepared by non-partisan legislative staff for the use of legislative members in their deliberations. This analysis is not a part of the legislation nor does it constitute a statement of legislative intent.

As Amended by the Senate

Title: An act relating to establishing the Washington dual enrollment scholarship pilot program.

Brief Description: Establishing the Washington dual enrollment scholarship pilot program.

Sponsors: House Committee on Appropriations (originally sponsored by Representatives Paul, Pollet, Bergquist, Sells and Riccelli).

Brief History:

Committee Activity:

College & Workforce Development: 2/19/19, 2/20/19 [DPS];

Appropriations: 2/27/19, 2/28/19 [DP2S(w/o sub CWD)].

Floor Activity:

Passed House: 3/5/19, 96-2.

Senate Amended.

Passed Senate: 4/15/19, 47-0.

Brief Summary of Second Substitute Bill

  • Establishes the Washington Dual Enrollment Scholarship Pilot Program (Pilot Program) to provide scholarships and textbook vouchers to low-income students enrolled in Running Start or College in the High School Programs.

  • Includes a sunset review by the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Committee.


Majority Report: The substitute bill be substituted therefor and the substitute bill do pass. Signed by 13 members: Representatives Hansen, Chair; Leavitt, Vice Chair; Gildon, Assistant Ranking Minority Member; Graham, Assistant Ranking Minority Member; Bergquist, Mead, Paul, Pollet, Ramos, Rude, Sells, Slatter and Sutherland.

Minority Report: Do not pass. Signed by 2 members: Representatives Van Werven, Ranking Minority Member; Kraft.

Minority Report: Without recommendation. Signed by 1 member: Representative Young.

Staff: Megan Mulvihill (786-7304).


Majority Report: The second substitute bill be substituted therefor and the second substitute bill do pass and do not pass the substitute bill by Committee on College & Workforce Development. Signed by 29 members: Representatives Ormsby, Chair; Bergquist, 2nd Vice Chair; Robinson, 1st Vice Chair; Stokesbary, Ranking Minority Member; MacEwen, Assistant Ranking Minority Member; Rude, Assistant Ranking Minority Member; Caldier, Cody, Dolan, Fitzgibbon, Hansen, Hoff, Hudgins, Jinkins, Kraft, Macri, Mosbrucker, Pettigrew, Pollet, Ryu, Senn, Springer, Stanford, Steele, Sullivan, Sutherland, Tarleton, Tharinger and Ybarra.

Minority Report: Do not pass. Signed by 2 members: Representatives Chandler and Dye.

Staff: Zane Potter (786-7349).


Running Start.

Eleventh and twelfth grade students may participate in Running Start (RS) by enrolling in courses offered by Washington community and technical colleges, Central Washington University, Eastern Washington University, Washington State University, and Northwest Indian College. Students take RS courses on college campuses and online. High school students do not pay tuition for RS classes, but may be charged fees and are responsible for books and transportation. The higher education institutions must provide fee waivers for low-income students, including those who qualify for the free or reduced-price lunch program. In 2018 there were over 27,800 students who completed at least one RS course.

College in the High School.

College in the High School (CHS) courses allow academically prepared high school students in tenth, eleventh, and twelfth grade to take college level curriculum in high school. The college courses are taught by qualified high school teachers using college curriculum, college textbooks, and with oversight from college faculty and staff. The CHS programs are defined in contract between a high school and a college or university. The CHS program contracts must specify the criteria for a student's eligibility for the program, whether the student or high school pays for tuition fees, and the negotiated cost of course materials, such as textbooks. Students who successfully complete a CHS program course receive both high school credit and college credit. A CHS course must fulfill general or major requirements at participating higher education institutions. In 2018 there were over 35,300 students who completed at least one CHS course.

Summary of Second Substitute Bill:

The Washington Student Achievement Council (WSAC), in consultation with the institutions of higher education and the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, must establish the Washington Dual Enrollment Scholarship Pilot Program (Pilot Program). Students who are eligible to receive a scholarship are those who qualify for free or reduced-price lunch, are enrolled in one or more dual credit programs, and have at least a 2.0 GPA. The WSAC may provide scholarships to students as follows:

The Joint Legislative Audit and Review Committee must conduct a sunset review of the Pilot Program, and if the Pilot Program is not renewed by the Legislature following the sunset review, the Pilot Program is set to expire July 1, 2025.


The Senate amendment expands the Washington Dual Enrollment Scholarship Pilot Program's running start award by covering course fees or laboratory fees, in addition to mandatory fees. The Senate amendment also requires the K-12 school districts to provide documentation of a student's low-income status directly to institutions of higher education for the purpose of the running start fee waiver when the school district has knowledge of a low-income student's enrollment in running start, beginning with the 2020-21 school year. Subject to appropriation, the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction, in consultation with the Student Achievement Council, must develop a centralized process for school districts to provide students' low-income status to institutions of higher education for the running start fee waiver.

Appropriation: None.

Fiscal Note: Preliminary fiscal note available.

Effective Date: The bill takes effect 90 days after adjournment of the session in which the bill is passed.

Staff Summary of Public Testimony (College & Workforce Development):

(In support) House Bill 1973 increases opportunities for postsecondary education for Washington families. Dual-enrollment programs allow students to earn college credit while still in high school. However, the opportunity to participate in dual enrollment is very much based on the family's income. State law allows students on free and reduced-price lunch to have their fees waived, but these students are still responsible for books. For the CHS program, there is a fee to participate in the and there can be inequity. The CHS programs are taught in high school by teachers to non-CHS students and CHS students, so because one student paid the fee they will get college credit while the other will not.

Research shows students who take dual-credit programs are more likely to attend postsecondary education. A lot of the time there will be students who graduate from high school and receive their two year degree in the same weekend. This saves taxpayers money because it shortens the student's time to obtain a degree. It costs four-times as much to take a class at a college than through the CHS program. As a result, there is less reliance on programs like the State Need Grant and College Bound Scholarship.

The RS and CHS programs are not just for university students. These programs are also beneficial for students pursuing apprenticeships and workforce programs. This bill will help the state get closer to the goal of making dual credit free for all students.

The WSAC would be the better agency to administer the scholarship as they administer the state's other financial aid programs and work with all of the higher education institutions.

(Opposed) None.

Staff Summary of Public Testimony (Appropriations):

(In support) This bill eliminates some barriers for college bound students in dual credit classes. There are instances where two students take the same classes and pass the same tests, but one student gets college credit and one does not. Often times that barrier is because of fees. This bill would help address this issue and provide more equity. Low-income students should be able to take advantage of these opportunities. This bill can present some monetary savings to the state. Students eligible for this scholarship would be eligible for state financial aid, which could be used for these programs, and which costs four times less than the cost of taking classes at a college.

(Opposed) None.

Persons Testifying (College & Workforce Development): Representative Paul, prime sponsor; Steve DuPont, Central Washington University; David Buri, Eastern Washington University; Joe Holliday, State Board for Community and Technical Colleges; and Katherine Mahoney, Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction.

Persons Testifying (Appropriations): Arlen Harris, State Board for Community and Technical Colleges; David Buri, Eastern Washington University; and Steve Dupont, Central Washington University.

Persons Signed In To Testify But Not Testifying (College & Workforce Development): None.

Persons Signed In To Testify But Not Testifying (Appropriations): None.