Lincoln County High School is one of four Kentucky high schools joining the University of Kentucky’s dual credit program, with courses starting in the 2021-22 school year. The program allows high school juniors and seniors to simultaneously earn high school and college credits in courses taught by both high school teachers and UK instructors.
“In many dual credit programs, a high school instructor teaches the college material. Our program is unique in that UK instructors partner with high school teachers and teach courses via interactive video,” said Dr. Justin Bathon, co-director of the UK Center for Next Generation Leadership, and an associate professor of Educational Leadership Studies at the UK College of Education.
The program launched in early 2020 with four high schools serving as pilot sites: Paris Independent High School, Marshall County High School, Elkhorn Crossing School in Scott County, and STEAM Academy in Fayette County. The following semester, Fleming County High School, Lawrence County High School, Somerset Independent High School, Logan County High School, Bardstown High School, and Trimble County High School came on board.
In addition to Lincoln County High School, three other districts will begin offering dual credit with UK in the 2021-22 school year: Allen County-Scottsville High School, Larry A. Ryle High School in Boone County, and Frankfort Independent High School.
“Lincoln County High School and Lincoln County Schools are very excited to be part of this partnership and the opportunity it brings to our students,” said Michael Godbey, Lincoln County High School Principal. “The expanded dual-credit opportunities this partnership brings will expand our mission of graduating college, career and community ready citizens of Lincoln County and set our students on an even greater path of success.”
For the 14 participating high schools, the dual credit program is an extension of their districts’ participation in programs offered by the Center for Next Generation Leadership, based at the UK College of Education. The center has helped establish a network of schools committed to upgrading educational systems to deepen the learner experience for every student.
“School leaders are implementing innovative practices across the Commonwealth in an effort to better meet the needs of all learners. Our innovative dual-credit program has become a logical extension of that work,” said Dr. Lu Young, clinical associate professor in the Department of Educational Leadership Studies and executive director of the Center for Next Generation Leadership at the UK College of Education.
The high school juniors and seniors who enroll in the dual credit program are known as “UK Next Generation Scholars.” They are provided an advisor from the UK Center for Next Generation Leadership who checks in on their progress, helps with college applications and supporting materials, and promotes a successful transition to college.
"Next Gen Scholars is a way to let students access the University of Kentucky while still in high school and consider whether our bachelor’s degree options might be right for them. It is particularly encouraging that working with our high school partners we can make this a tool of opportunity to reach more students who might not have considered themselves college-going in the past," said Christine Harper, associate provost for enrollment management at UK.
Next Gen Scholars apply for admission to UK as non-degree seeking students. They can take up to a maximum of 10 UK courses while in high school. The UK courses are delivered both online and by high school teachers who have been trained by UK faculty to teach the curricula. Tuition for courses in the dual credit program, in alignment with state determined dual credit rates, may be paid by either the school or the student, as determined by each district’s policy. Districts are expected to provide tuition support to qualifying free or reduced lunch students, a Council on Postsecondary Education policy.
UK dual credit courses are developed and offered primarily by UK academic departments with the support of local high school staff.
UK colleges contributing to the available courses include:
College of Arts and Sciences
College of Communication and Information
College of Design
College of Education
Interested Lincoln County High School juniors and seniors should contact the school guidance office at 606.365.9111. Additional information about UK’s dual credit program can be found at https://www.uky.edu/sal/dual-credit.