Cut in Running Start education program headed for floor vote

By LIV FINNE  | 
BLOG
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Mar 2, 2018

SB 6362, the bill to cut the popular Running Start program for high school students, has moved out of the House Rules Committee and is headed for floor action. 

Section 407 of SB 6362 would cut Running Start funding by freezing the amount per student the program receives. This would mean a $30 million a year reduction to the program.

Running Start provides educational funding to about 26,000 eleventh- and twelfth-grade students so they can take courses at community and technical colleges. The program has been in place for 27 years, and has given thousands of students a strong start on higher education. Running Start also offers a second chance to foster youth and other struggling high school students who have dropped out.  It lets them complete their GED and transition seamlessly into higher education courses, setting them on a course for success in life.

Cutting the program, as the sponsors of SB 6362 are seeking, means more young people will face a frustrating dead-end, losing this key learning opportunity to turn their lives around and secure a better future for themselves.

Public education faces many problems, including lack of school choice and high drop-out rates. Yet here is one program everyone agrees is working and enjoys broad bi-partisan support. That’s Running Start. Why would any lawmaker vote to cut this program?