More Valley School Districts Offering Dual Enrollment Courses

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HARLINGEN – Harlingen CISD signed a partnership with the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley allowing students to take college courses while completing a high school degree. 

Dual enrollment courses at Rio Grande Valley high schools are becoming more popular.

Some students can potentially walk away with two years’ worth of college credit after they graduate.

Hector Elizondo, a sophomore student at Harlingen CISD’s Early College High School, said he has an interested in mechanical engineering.

“It started when I was in eighth grade. I took this career class and I learned about it and I found it pretty interesting,” he said.

Elizondo will be taking courses in engineering through UTRGV starting next year while completing his high school courses.

Junior and senior students at the Early College High School will have an option to take college courses in engineering, teaching or general education.

Some Valley school districts also have partnerships with community colleges.

“We are a district of choice and so it’s really about student’s defining their path,” said Veronica Kortan, administrator for organizational development at Harlingen CISD.

She said the options in education are starting to become endless for students.

“As you really look at what teaching and learning looks like today, it’s worlds apart then it was 10 and even five years ago because the students that are coming in, their needs are very different,” she said.

Kortan said this option is great for first-generation students going off to college after high school.

She said not only does this help a student get ahead, but it also helps them save money.

“When you look at 60 hours of college credits, that’s a tremendous amount of savings for our parents,” Kortan said. “And so on the average, we are saving our parents and students up to two years of tuition.”

Students have to apply in order to be enrolled in early college high schools. Each school district has their own requirements, so it’s best to check with your student’s district on those requirements.

UTRGV has a partnership with the following Valley school districts:

Brownsville ISD, Coram DEO Classical Academy, Edcouch-Elsa ISD, Edinburg CISD, Harlingen CISD, Jubilee Academies, La Joya ISD, Lasara ISD, Lyford ISD, McAllen ISD, Mission CISD, Pharr-San Juan-Alamo ISD, Point Isabel ISD, Rio Hondo ISD, Roma ISD, San Benito CISD, San Isidro ISD, Santa Maria ISD, Santa Rosa ISD, Sharyland ISD, South Texas ISD, Valley Christian High School, Valley View ISD and Vanguard Academy.

UTRGV said they continue to work with other districts that are in the consideration/approval process.

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