Guest Column: College Credit Plus Helps Students Get A Jump On Higher Education
New program could help students in grades 7-12 save thousands on college

Parents whose children are moving closer to high school graduation likely are asking themselves a few questions: Will my child go on to college after graduation? Will my child be prepared for higher education? Will we be able to afford it? These are normal questions for parents to ask.

There are chances for parents and students to save thousands of dollars for college by participating in Ohio's College Credit Plus Program while the student is still in high school. A college education is one way to begin a career. We are creating opportunities for our students to have alternatives in beginning their higher education.

There is good news if you think college may be in your child’s future. Ohio’s College Credit Plus program offers students in grades 7-12 the chance to earn college credit from any Ohio public college or participating private college while earning high school credit for the same courses, if they qualify academically. If a student qualifies for College Credit Plus, all associated costs are free to students seeking credit from public colleges. There may be limited costs for students seeking credit from private institutions. 

“In our quest to make higher education more accessible and more affordable for all students and their families, we think College Credit Plus can be a real game changer,” said John Carey, Chancellor of the Ohio Board of Regents. “Depending on how many College Credit Plus courses a student is able to successfully complete, he or she could get a jump on a degree and a career.”

Ohio has never offered students a better start on a college education. A College Credit Plus student enjoys the opportunity to pursue more challenging classes and explore college interests sooner. Qualifying students can earn anywhere from a few college credits to more than a year’s worth while still in high school, which can reduce a student’s time in college and greatly reduce the family’s higher education costs.

Private school and home school students also can apply to take part in College Credit Plus. The deadline is April 1 for students to let their high schools know they want to participate in College Credit Plus next school year. Students who attend a nonpublic school or are home-schooled must inform the Ohio Department of Education by the same April 1 deadline.

Here are the next steps for parents:

  1. Talk with your child’s school. Your local school district was required to provide information about College Credit Plus before March 1.If you haven’t received an email, letter or call yet, check your district’s website. The district also must hold a public meeting before March 30 to explain the program, and it must invite participating colleges and universities in your area to attend.

  2. If you have questions about College Credit Plus,please visit the FAQ page at to see if the answer to your question is there.

  3. If your question is not answered on the FAQ page, or you do not receive timely information from your school, please contact the Ohio Department of Education toll-free at (877) 644-6338 or via email at Your child’s school and your area colleges will have the information you need to do your part on time.

  4. In the meantime, have your child meet with his or her school counselor—you’re welcome to attend also—to talk about whether College Credit Plus might be a good fit for your child.

  5. Once you have the facts, contact or check the website of participating colleges in your area. All public and participating private colleges in the state are listed at Ask them for College Credit Plus application forms, instructions and a list of criteria they will use to determine if your child is college-ready for admission to that institution.

  6. Once your child is admitted to a college under College Credit Plus, he or she will be able to register for college courses. Again, conversations with the high school counselor or a college advisor can help your child decide which of the many available college courses would match his or her needs and plans.

  7. Have your child register for classes and provide a copy of his or her schedule to the high school counselor for review.

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