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Joint High School Partnership Programs on chopping block
Programs at Halifax CC could be affected under House budget proposal


If the current North Carolina General Assembly House budget proposal passes, the Joint High School Partnership Programs, including the Huskins and Dual Enrollment programs, will be cut this year.


“Unless something changes dramatically, Huskins and Dual Enrollment programs that have served the Roanoke Valley at Halifax Community College for more than 20 years are on the chopping block,” said HCC President, Dr. Ervin V. Griffin, Sr. “They will be gone.”


According to the House Subcommittee on Education legislation titled, “Eliminate College Transfer Courses for Dual Enrollment and Huskins Students,” funding for college transfer courses, excluding math and science, offered to dual enrolled and Huskins students would be cut. The reduction would not impact courses provided to Early and Middle College High School students.


The North Carolina Community College System office staff seeks funding for these programs to be at least partially restored to prevent changes in the fall semester. They would also like to replace the term “college transfer courses” with “general education courses” in the legislation. This could mean a big change in the courses that are allowed for funding.


If that change is enacted, colleges would be eligible to earn budget full-time equivalency (FTE). This affects funding that community colleges receive for students enrolled, tuition exempt, in Huskins or Dual Enrollment programs such as biology, chemistry, science, computer information systems and so on. Plus, colleges would continue to be eligible to earn budget FTE for all Huskins and Dual Enrollment students enrolled in technical and vocational courses.


However, if the proposed legislation is enacted, colleges would not be allowed to earn budget FTE for students enrolled in Huskins or Dual Enrollment programs in courses such as art, drama, economics, English and various foreign languages, history, sociology and the like. Colleges could elect to work with high schools to provide courses on a self-supporting basis, charging appropriate tuition and fees. 


To that, Griffin said, “The students in our service area will not be able to afford that. As a result, they will not have access to classes that they have had in the past. It would be a shame if these programs were eliminated.” Last year, HCC served 259 Huskins and Dual Enrollment students. During this year’s commencement, HCC awarded the third annual Presidential Partnership award to area school leaders for partnering with HCC in the cooperative programs.


The House budget also includes a provision to eliminate funding for the Learn and Earn Online program that permits public school students enrolled in grades 9-12 to take community college courses online for college credit.