Heritage Academy, a private Christian college preparatory school, has teamed up with Missouri Baptist University to give high school seniors a head start on college with dual enrollment courses in college algebra and advanced biology.
Math teacher Tere DeWitt and biology teacher Laurie Wallace will use the university’s texts and syllabuses to instruct their high school classes.
DeWitt said the two courses will be as challenging as those at Missouri Baptist in St. Louis.
About 80 students are enrolled in the academy, now in its fourth year.
Heritage Academy administrators picked college algebra and biology for the dual-credit program because they had faculty members qualified to teach those subjects.
Wallace, who has a doctorate, previously taught at MU’s College of Veterinary Medicine.
DeWitt taught college algebra at Central Missouri State University and State Fair Community College.
Students who choose to take one of the courses will pay approximately $150 for three credit hours, in addition to their normal private school tuition.
Other Columbia high schools offer college credit with a different approach.
Christian Fellowship School offers Advanced Placement courses in biology, calculus, physics and American history.
Students taking AP courses must pass a standardized test in their subject area at the end of the class before they receive college credit.
Administrator Rick Mueller said about 75 percent of the school’s students who take the tests receive the credit.
He said Christian Fellowship has considered integrating dual-credit programs into its curriculum.
“We’re interested in it,” he said. “We looked into it last year with Moberly Area Community College, but we don’t have it set up yet.”