New curriculum could allow students to skip college remedial courses

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Hundreds of students are required to take remedial classes when enrolling in state community colleges. A new pilot program in select high schools could soon change the requirement.

“These courses are designed for students who have done pretty well on the ACT, but not well enough to enter a two or four-year college without a remedial course,” said Cathy Jones, an education administrator with the Alabama State Department of Education (ALSDE).

Considering the rising costs of education and some demanding degree plans, it will save students a wealth of time and money.

“The remedial costs are a little bit expensive for the parents and the students, and it also sets them behind in achieving the college degree if they have to take a remedial course,” Jones said.

The program is a partnership between ALSDE, state community colleges and select high schools. The Southern Regional Education Board is providing teachers with college readiness training in Mathematics and Literacy. Enterprise High School is a major partner in the region.

“They are giving special attention and offering training around the state for the teachers and for the community colleges,” said Jones.

The courses are offered for high school credit.

“This course needs to be taken with caution and in communication with the school guidance counselors, but it is a viable option for many students in our state, especially those going to community colleges,” Jones said.

The pilot program will take effect this fall. If it is successful, Jones said it will be implemented in high schools statewide. Training is also underway this week at Jefferson State Community College. She said another one is planned in Mobile in the next several weeks.

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