Running Start is intended to provide students a program option consisting of attendance at certain institutions of higher education and the simultaneous earning of high school and college/university credit. Running Start was initiated by the Legislature as a component of the 1990 parent and student Learning by Choice Law.
Students in grades 11 and 12 are allowed to take college courses at Washington’s community and technical colleges, and at Central Washington University, Eastern Washington University, Washington State University, and Northwest Indian College.
Running Start Students and their families do not pay tuition, but they do pay college fees and buy their own books, as well as provide their own transportation. Students receive both high school and college credit for these classes and therefore accelerate their progress through the education system. The exercise of that right is subject only to minimal eligibility and procedural requirements, which are spelled out, in state administrative rules. See RCW 28A.600.300 for more information.
Running Start Frequently Asked Questions - Revised (November 2014)
Learning by Choice - An Act Relating to Student Enrollment Options in Washington State - brochure
FY 2014-15 Running Start Enrollment Reporting (Reimbursement Rates)
Running Start Enrollment Verification Form - Revised (March 2015)
Please note there are several proposed legislative actions that could impact programming for the 2015-16 school year relative to Running Start in the High School and College in the High School. Currently there are no proposed changes to the traditional Running Start program. There are proposals to eliminate Running Start in the High School, as well as change to College in the High School programs to offer a tuition funding source for low-income students and may include grade 10 students. We will post any changes as soon as possible.
Associate Degrees, Running Start, and the Issuance of High School Diplomas (PDF)