The Chinook’s Edge School division has seen a significant increase in student participation in online dual credit courses this year.  

Course registration increased from 163 students last year, to 270 students this school year.   

According to Alberta Education, dual credit is optional career-based high school programming, aimed at helping students in making meaningful transitions to post-secondary or the workplace. Students who participate get credit for their work at the high school and post-secondary level.  

“We’re thrilled to see the increase in students choosing to participate. Dual credit learning is an incredibly powerful experience for students, which is why we’ve worked hard to create these opportunities. Our data tells us that when students take at least one dual credit course, they graduate from high school,” said Associate Superintendent, of Chinook’s Edge School Division, Jason Drent.  “We see that because of their participation in dual credit, students increase their academic confidence, they are more engaged in their academic learning at school, and they are more likely to choose to be in challenging academic classes. Dual credit helps students see the ‘why’ of school, it helps them connect what they are learning to their future.”  

The success of the program is attributed to the teacher's ability to support each student.  

Typically, students in the program are assigned one teacher, and a key support staff member, who checks in with students individually to review assignments and deadlines.  

“We see that students are far more successful this way,” said the Principal of Hugh Sutherland School (HSS) in Carstairs Dean Nielsen. “The teacher in this role helps students by answering their questions and supporting them, while also holding them accountable.”  

Olivia Halverson, a Grade 11 HSS student took the Health Care Aid dual credit course through Red Deer Polytechnic because she wants a career in health care.   

“I think it’s a cool opportunity to look into something you want to pursue in the future, and I’m really enjoying it. I like learning about what people in health care do and seeing how it runs,” she said.