Ohio’s College Credit Plus (CCP) Program

February 16, 2016

CCP-53To CCP or not to CCP? This is the question. At least one time a day, a parent, teacher or colleague asks me if high school students should participate in CCP.  It is true that CCP is an amazing opportunity and a great chance for students to earn college credit at little to no cost, but there are also some risks.   Below is a checklist to help students and their families make the best decision possible.

The Pros

  • College Credits Plus provides tuition and books free…yes, that is right! You can earn thousands of dollars in college credits for free.  This is not a typo.  If you don’t understand the basics of how CCP works, I strongly encourage you to visit chatfield.edu/ccp.
  • Students can earn up to 30 credit hours per year. (the equivalent of most full time college students).
  • Student can now take classes in the summer to get a jumpstart on the school year.
  • Students can earn up to 120 total hours.
  • A typical college course (3 credit hours) is worth 5 Carnegie units in high school, or in plain English, a one semester class in college is worth a yearlong class in high school. For example, if you take English 101 in the fall and English 102 in the spring of that year, College English is worth two years of high school English.
  • High schools can not prohibit CCP students from participating in extracurricular activities or sports. They are also not permitted to have any policies that discourage participation in CCP.
  • Colleges will provide an advisor to you, and you will be treated like any other college student.
  • Many students have graduated from high school and earned an Associate Degree at the same time.
  • If your high school offers advanced placement or honors courses that you can earn above a 4.0 grade point average, then they must also grant the same advanced standing grade point scale to a college class taken through CCP.
  • Students who participate in CCP usually graduate from college at younger age and with less debt, when they enter the work force as a professional at a younger age. In some cases, students finish both a Bachelor’s and Master degree in the four years after high school.


The Pros (specific to Chatfield)

  • Our small class sizes are very small, with most classes averaging 5 to 15 students.
  • Chatfield has articulation agreements with more than 30 of the best colleges and universities in our state and beyond. This means the classes you take transfer to schools like Miami, Xavier, NKU, Thomas More, Mount St. Joseph and more.  Not only do your credits transfer, they count for the credit you need—not just as an elective.
  • We have always had a dedicated advisor for CCP students.
  • Tutoring, writing labs and online tutoring are all provided for free.
  • Most local high schools have a written CCP agreement with Chatfield, making the transition as easy as possible.
  • Chatfield College use block scheduling; meaning classes meet only one time per week for two and a half hours. This makes it convenient for students who want to continue taking some of their classes at their home high school or students who want to go to college full time, but be to participate in athletics or extracurricular activities like band, choir or clubs.
  • Block scheduling often save students in both travel time and expense, as a class only meets once per week instead three times a week, like many colleges.
  • Chatfield College provides the books for CCP students, which makes Chatfield much less expensive for home schoolers who must buy their books at other institutions. It also lessens the cost to local school districts.
  • Chatfield is faith-based and nonprofit. We are able to put the needs of students ahead of fiscal concerns, and our values are reflective of the students and families of Southwestern Ohio

The Cons

  • Just because a student is academically ready to take college classes does not mean they are mature enough to handle the rigors of a college class.
  • It can be tough to juggle a schedule at both high school and college.
  • The time allowed to drop a class without penalty is short. At most schools, it is only two weeks.
  • Poor college grades often do not transfer. A grade of D rarely transfers.
  • College classes require several hours of work and study outside of class. A student needs to be disciplined enough to make time in their busy schedules for reading, studying and completing assignments.
  • College and high school schedules often do not match, meaning you may start class before your high school starts, and often end before your high school schedule ends.
  • College classes cover material that, in some cases, would be more mature than material covered in high school classes.
  • Online classes sound tempting, but the completion and pass rate for online classes is much worse than classes that meet in person. A student must be very disciplined to do well in an online class.
  • It is the student’s responsibility to communicate any issues they have as soon as possible, to both their advisor and their high school guidance counselor. Rarely do the issues create a problem that cannot be fixed, unless it is not communicated in a timely manner.
  • You are responsible for the tuition for a class you fail unless you qualify for free or reduced lunch.
  • You must declare your intent to participate in writing to your principal by April 1. You can declare intent but not participate without penalty.

I hope this list is helpful to you in the decision-making process.  CCP is a great option for most the students we meet with, but please take the time to understand everything that is required to be successful.  The best way to find out if CCP is right for you is to use this check list and then go to a campus for a visit.  If you would like to visit Chatfield College and see all the great things we have to offer CCP students, please go to www.chatfield.edu/visit and schedule a time to come to in.  If you have any other questions, feel free to email me at john.penrose@chatfield.edu or call 513-875-3344 ext 138.

Posted in