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Legislation makes edits to CIHS requirements

New bill excludes 10th graders from receiving credit in any CIHS classes 

Greta Rainbow, Copy Editor
Originally published June 2, 2014

Language Arts teacher Sooz Stahl talks to senior Fredrik Mansfield in her College in the High School (CIHS) course Film is Literature.

Language Arts teacher Sooz Stahl talks to senior Fredrik Mansfield in her College in the High School (CIHS) course Film is Literature.

New legislation explicitly excludes 10th grade students from participating in the college in the high school (CIHS) programs after a House bill, intending to amend the current program code, was struck down.


“It was never clear from the legislation who could get credits… In the language they stated that it was for juniors and seniors, but they never said it wasn’t for sophomores,” French teacher Annaick Sturgeon said. “So the UW interpreted that as ‘well, we can give credits for sophomores’ since we have some that are taking the classes.” The bill was proposed because some policymakers wanted an unambiguous, written assent that 10th graders could in fact receive the credit.


The bill was turned down and subsequently 10th grade students are excluded from the CIHS program across all subjects. These students may still take the class but cannot pay the fee and sign up to receive credit. For example, in the past, a 10th grade student in their third year of a language would be given the option of enrolling in the University of Washington in the High School (UWHS) program, where they would receive 5 credits from UW. The fee is around $300 and these credits are recognized by most American colleges.


“I think you kind of have to go to college now so it’s good preparation in advance, and if you can get credit then it’s even better,” junior Noah Forslund said. Because most UW bachelor degrees require 180 credits, starting to meet the quota early is one motivator for joining the CIHS program.


Since 11th and 12th graders can still participate, CIHS classes– which appear on transcripts and positively affect a student’s weighted GPA– will still be offered. 10th graders can take these classes but cannot participate in the credit transfer program.


For some CIHS classes, such as Astronomy, enrollment will not be affected because 10th graders are still completing their compulsory courses (Biology and Chemistry). For the World Language department, there will be a significant dip.


“Because a lot of students do their first year [of language] in middle school, then they’re freshmen in French 2, or Spanish 2 or Japanese 2, and they are sophomores in French 3, Spanish 3, Japanese 3. So it does affect about half of our student population in the World Language department,” Sturgeon said.


According to Sturgeon, the UW requires at least six students (although they prefer a minimum of eight) to sign up for the program in order to be an official CIHS class. Of this year’s French 3 students, seven 11th graders and four 10th graders participated.


“If a student’s ready they should be able to receive the credit,” Sturgeon said. As the new legislation demonstrates, Olympia lawmakers feel otherwise.

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Legislation makes edits to CIHS requirements