P-TECH schools must also cover costs related to college courses — primarily tuition, instruction, and textbooks. Each local partnership must work together to identify sources of funding for these costs. Some states offer funding for “dual enrollment” programs.
These funds are typically provided to the colleges that offer credit-bearing courses to high school students, and may be a good option for P-TECH funding in those states.
In other states and districts, the college may waive or reduce the cost of college courses. In other situations, local charities may provide funding.
For example, in one city, the costs of college courses are shared by the community college and the local education entity.
These expenses include items such as:
- A dedicated school leader and staff
- College instructors
- College textbooks
- Collaboration between high school and college faculty
- The College Liaison position
The two systems have created policies that aim to reduce the total expenses related to college credit courses.
For any section of a college course that primarily includes high school students (i.e., a cohort course), the program only covers the cost of the course instructor rather than the full tuition for each student.
In some instances, a high school teacher may be approved to teach a college-level course as part of his/her regular teaching load. In those cases, the incremental cost of instruction is essentially zero. This is because teachers cannot be paid from two sources for a single course. Note that this scenario is dependent upon the teacher meeting all the criteria that the college department has established for its instructors.
Toward the end of the program, students will move into typical college courses, integrated in with other college students. In those cases, the program must cover the full cost of tuition for the student.