MADISONVILLE-The "dual" is over.
Tuesday night, the Monroe County Board
of Education accepted the recommendation of Director of Schools Mike
Lowry to continue their dual enrollment partnership with Hiwassee
College for a probationary one-year period, instead of changing to
Cleveland State Community College (CSCC).
The school system had already decided
to use CSCC for math dual enrollment courses because of a bridge
program designed to help students improve their math scores so they
can take college credit classes, but was faced with a tough decision
on remaining with Monroe County's sole college, Hiwassee College, or
moving all other dual enrollment classes to CSCC.
The discussion arose at the June
meeting of the School Board after the system had received numerous
complaints about Hiwassee's credits transferring in recent years.
In addition to conversations with a
committee, Lowry had lengthy discussions with Hiwassee College
President Dr. Robin Tricoli, high school principals, and guidance
counselors before reaching a conclusion.
"There were varying opinions both
ways," Lowry told the School Board. "There was no consensus."
In the end, Lowry recommended the
school system give Hiwassee College another chance.
"After looking at both institutions
and also taking into consideration what we do as a community, I feel
that our best interest, with stipulations, is that we go with
Hiwassee College for a probational period of one year," Lowry said.
Among the stipulations, the school
system is requiring that a "strong accountability system" be
established, with frequent communication between Hiwassee College,
Lowry, the high schools and the Board of Education. In addition, if
any issues develop with credits transferring, Hiwassee should
approach the school system with that information.
"Those bugs need to be worked out as
much as humanly possible," said Lowry. "If there are any problems
that I'm made aware of, I will go directly to Dr. Tricoli."
Dr. Tricoli agreed that Hiwassee
College would do anything asked of them.
"Your goal is the same as ours to
make sure that our priority is student success," she told the
School Board. "We will make sure that as students enroll for
classes that they understand about transferability. We'll work on the
front end to make sure credits transfer on the back end."
Dr. Tricoli explained that when looking
into some of the transferring problems, they discovered students had
not requested their college transcripts.
See full story in the Sunday, July 14, edition of The Advocate & Democrat.