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Clinton Township

November 10, 2010

L'Anse Creuse partners with Wayne State University

CLINTON TOWNSHIP — L’Anse Creuse High School students will have the opportunity to earn college credit thanks to the new partnership between L’Anse Creuse Public Schools and Wayne State University.

The partnership was approved this past spring and the first college level history course, The World Since 1945, began this fall semester.

There are only eight students enrolled in the current class, but there has been a lot of additional interest for future classes, said Erik Edoff, senior director of instructional programs at L’Anse Creuse’s Frederick V. Pankow Center, where the college-level courses are held.

“This is a very unique program, and I am very much looking forward to it growing,” said Edoff. “The class that is currently in session has been really successful, and I’ve gotten very positive reviews from both the teacher and the students.”

The program offers dual enrollment in which students in 11th- or 12th-grade earn both high school and college credit. If the college level course being taken replaces a L’Anse Creuse course, a portion of the tuition is covered by the school district.

“The partnership offers a lot more flexibility and opportunity for advanced education,” said Michelle Irwin, director for communications and relations for L’Anse Creuse Public Schools. “With the district covering some of the cost, it reduces the cost of college tuition for parents and students, which in today’s economy is a bonus.”

The cost of a two-credit-hour course is $576.60, and with dual enrollment reimbursement, the L’Anse Creuse Public School District will cover $521.00, leaving the parent/student responsible for $55.60. For a three-credit-hour course the fee is $864.90, with the district covering $521.00, leaving the student/parent responsible for $343.90. A four-credit-hour course costs $1,153.20, of which the district will cover $521.00, leaving the student/parent responsible for $632.20.

The partnership is not only beneficial to L’Anse Creuse students and parents, but also to Wayne State University. The university has partnered with schools in other counties, including Detroit Renaissance High School, Troy High School and Southfield High School, to offer courses at the high school level, but this is the first district in Macomb County they’ve partnered with, said Ahmad Ezzeddine, associate vice president for educational outreach at Wayne State University.

“We are extremely excited about this, and working with L’Anse Creuse, as well as Macomb County, as part of a broader strategy to offer higher education opportunities to students,” said Ezzeddine. “It’s providing an opportunity for students to get college into their mind as early as possible. The students who participate in the programs are more advanced, driven students who are interested in getting some college credits out of the way and want to make their transition into a two- to four-year degree much easier.”

The courses don’t take place during regular school hours. For example, the class being offered right now runs from 2:45 p.m. to 5:15 p.m., so a student taking this course would not enroll in a first-period class.

The start date for the other proposed college courses is Jan. 10, 2011. Students can choose from Oral Communication: Basic Speech, Computer Science: Problem Solving and Programming with Lab, Survey of Economics, and Pre-Engineering.

The classes were not just chosen blindly. According to Ezzeddine, they wanted to offer general education courses that would be required for students regardless of the degree the student was pursuing or the college they were attending.

“We wanted to make sure that we offered courses that were of interest to the L’Anse Creuse students,” said Ezzeddine. “We came up with a list, ran it by the students, and these are the courses that garnered the most interest.”

According to Beverly Polega, executive director for instructional support for L’Anse Creuse, a course will be offered only if there is enough student enrollment. She said there needs to be at least eight to 10 students enrolled, but that they’d like even more than that.