By SALLY SEXTON
Weatherford College trustees approved a tuition change that will impact area high school students taking dual-credit courses.
The college had previously charged in-district high schoolers $80 per hour, and students considered out of district a higher tuition. During Thursday’s meeting, trustees voted to approve an overall flat rate of $80 per hour to all high school students attending schools within the Weatherford College district.
“We have some kids from Millsap and Aledo who go to school there but live out of district,” Andra Cantrell, WC’s vice president of financial and administrative affairs, said. “It’s confusing for them to be paying two different rates when they’re sitting beside each other in the same classroom.”
With the new rate, Weatherford College would initially suffer a loss of a little over $96,000, according to Cantrell, but “we feel this will increase our number of students and will be able to offset the loss.”
WC president Kevin Eaton said the change will also help Weatherford College stay in competition with other colleges.
“The Legislature passed a rule a few years ago, where universities could come in and offer dual-credit courses. We’ve had [The University of Texas at Permian Basin] come in and try to do that,” Eaton said.
“If we can’t provide a course and someone else can, then of course we want [that student] to get what they need. But they’re not doing that, they’re offering the same classes that we are.”
In addition to approving the flat rate fee, the board also approved an hourly fee of $25 for dual-credit students that are currently on the free- or reduced-lunch program.
Trustees also approved six vendors who had submitted bids for science equipment and supplies for the 2014-15 school year.
Arrowhead Scientific, Carolina Biological, Fisher Scientific, Sargent Welch, Sirchie Fingerprint Laboratories and Ward’s Natural Science were all approved, at a total estimated cost of $52,627.