The South-Western City School District will be expanding the "education options" it offers students next year as part of its effort to help prepare them for college or career after high school.

The South-Western City School District will be expanding the "education options" it offers students next year as part of its effort to help prepare them for college or career after high school.

Assistant Superintendent John Kellogg presented an overview of the education options offered by the district and what new choices will be available for students next school year.

Kellogg was standing in for Erik Shuey, the district's executive director of secondary learning and athletics, who prepared the material included in the presentation.

" 'Education options' in general is our way to give flexible means for students to earn high school, and in some cases, college credit through a variety of different programs we offer through the high school course of study," Kellogg said.

Those options are:

* Credit Flexibility, or "one of the newest species of education options we offer," Kellogg said.

Students are able to write their own course of study around an area of interest either because the district does not offer it or offerings do not fit their schedule, he said. The program only pertains to high school credit, but there is no limit to the kind of course work or number of credits.

Students earn credit through classroom instruction, demonstrating subject area competency or a combination of both.

Shuey is working with the district's high schools to develop a database for this program, including determining how many students are choosing this option and what courses they are studying under credit flexibility and what they are gaining through the program, Kellogg said.

* Post-Secondary Education Options (PSEO) allows students to take courses at college campuses and earn college credit and/or high school graduation credit, Kellogg said.

There have been two significant changes in the PSEO program from Columbus State Community College, which serves as the largest provider for South-Western, he said.

Students must now declare a major and follow that program of study, Kellogg said. And, before they can enroll in a degree-oriented college-level class, students must complete the Ohio Core high school graduation standards in the content area.

The number of students enrolled in PSEO has been declining, he said. Most likely that is because of the policy changes and because more students are opting to take AP courses at the high schools.

* Dual enrollment is a little different than PSEO, because it allows students to enroll in a college-level class taught in the high school by a high school teacher, with support from a college or university faculty member.

This program saves students the time and trouble of traveling to a college campus and keeps them in the high school environment while giving them "a first taste of college academic rigor," Kellogg said.

Next year, the district will be piloting its first comprehensive high school dual enrollment course -- Physics 1200 -- with Columbus State, he said.

The college credit students earn through the class would be applicable to all Ohio colleges, not just Columbus State, Superintendent Bill Wise said.

The program represents "a first step in our vision of every student leaving us with college credit," Wise said.

Two sections of math college development courses were offered this school year and about 12 courses will be offered next year.

Next year, South-Western will offer about five sections of English language arts courses and will be the first district in central Ohio to do so, Kellogg said.