Kinsey, Cooper bill to foster dual enrollment passes House

HARRISBURG, Oct. 4 – Today, H.B. 1258, introduced by state Reps. Stephen Kinsey, D-Phila., and Jill Cooper, R-Westmoreland, passed the Pennsylvania House of Representatives.

This legislation would improve the funding mechanism for dual enrollment programs by removing the requirement that students enrolled in such programs are removed from the school’s average daily membership. Commonly referred to as the “ADM,” the average daily membership impacts state funding to local school districts.

Dual enrollment programs allow high school students to enroll in college-level classes, earning college credits while still enrolled in high school. In some cases, college classes are taught by certified high school teachers and in the high school facility.

“Dual enrollment programs provide excellent opportunities for students; however, those currently participating in them aren’t able to get the full credit they deserve for their work,” Kinsey said. “It’s important that we allow students to have as many pathways to a successful education as possible, and today’s passage of our bill in the House is a great step toward making this happen!”

“Harrisburg shouldn’t be hindering innovation; we should be fostering it. If schools are being penalized for providing these programs, they would likely cancel them and deny students access to a great advantage,” Cooper said. “I am familiar with a student from one of my local schools who began their first year of college as a junior, because they earned a two-year associate degree while they were in high school. Now, they will graduate and enter the workforce much earlier and having saved a lot of money.”

House Bill 1258 will now head to the state Senate for future consideration.

Cooper and Kinsey worked together to draft this legislation and also came together as co-chairs of the Pennsylvania House Bipartisan “Meet Me in the Middle” Caucus.