Outcome of Study Could Affect Mississippi’s Early College High School Programs

U.S. Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.) today asked the U.S. Department of Education to include dual and concurrent enrollment programs in its upcoming analysis of federal K-12 education spending.

Hyde-Smith is among a bipartisan group of 17 Senators who signed a letter to Education Secretary Betsy DeVos encouraging the inclusion of dual enrollment, concurrent enrollment, and early college high school programs in a comprehensive review of federal spending allocations of educational programs.

“Mississippi has a growing number of college in high school or dual enrollment programs.  They effectively offer students, many from low-income or underserved communities, opportunities to prepare for post-secondary studies and careers,” Hyde-Smith said.  “The merits of these programs should be included in any assessment of federal education initiatives.”

Mississippi has six early college high school programs located in Clarksdale, Greenville, Mayhew, Natchez, Tougaloo, and Vicksburg, in addition to a number of dual enrollment programs throughout the state.

The Education Department’s study, the first in 10 years, will also help determine if the current distribution of funds meet program goals and student needs.

“An examination by the Department of school districts’ use of funds to support college in high school programs would be timely and help inform future policymaking to ensure more low-income and underrepresented students have access to these successful models,” the Senators wrote to DeVos.

Hyde-Smith serves on the Senate Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Subcommittee, which has jurisdiction over federal education programs funded through the Elementary and Secondary Education Act and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.

Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith Press Release