5-year free college program slated for DPS

Students return to classes next week

Times-Herald Newspapers

DEARBORN — Dearborn Public School students have about a week left until school starts Sept. 5 — and several upcoming events will keep students, parents and guardians alike busy.

Starting in September 2013, a five-year free college program is scheduled to begin at Dearborn, Edsel Ford and Fordson high schools, allowing freshman to graduate from high school in five years, subsequently receiving their high school diploma and a two-year associate’s degree, Dearborn Public Schools Communications Coordinator David Mustonen said.

Henry Ford Community College also will partner with the district.

Mustonen added that the school district will cover the costs.

Mustonen said the graduating students can either choose to enter the workforce or go to another college or university.

“We want people to know about it and be aware because there are things they need to do if they want to get into this program,” Mustonen said.

The five-year program has an open enrollment and students interested may apply. HFCC classes are available in the program for 11th-graders.

Tenth-graders in the program need to pass a test to prove they are prepared for HFCC courses during their 11th-grade year, according to a published report.

Mustonen said more information regarding the five-year high school and college program is scheduled to come out in the near future.

Because of new state legislation, students must now turn 5 before Dec. 1 so they can enroll in kindergarten. The date of enrollment will change for the next three school years, and the enrolled students need to be 5 years old by Nov. 1, 2013; by Oct. 1, 2014; and by Sept. 1, 2015.

Mustonen said the state put a waiver in place so if a parent sends a letter to their respective school that says their child turns 5 on Nov. 18, and they request an exception from the Nov. 1 cut off.

“If they send a letter we will enroll them,” Mustonen said. “We want parents to know about that waiver as well and have that by June 30, 2013.”

Mustonen added that the date is closer than it seems.

“We don’t want anyone to say they didn’t hear about it or it snuck up on them,” Mustonen said.

For more information on any new programs go to www.dearbornschools.org.

(Sherri Kolade can be reached at skolade@bewickpublications.com.)