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HCPSS Students Participating in JumpStart Dual Enrollment Courses to Receive Free Tuition

October 24th, 2022

Howard County Public School System (HCPSS) and Howard Community College (HCC) announced today that eligible students who participate in JumpStart dual enrollment courses, including those who are currently enrolled, will no longer be charged the cost of tuition.

Based on recent guidance from the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) regarding the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future Legislation, HCPSS will now pay tuition and consolidated fees for all JumpStart students. This change takes effect immediately for all students enrolled for the 2022-2023 school year, including students who participate in the Free and Reduced-Price Meals (FARMs) program. Students are still responsible for paying for course fees, First Day material fees, and textbooks.

“By providing free college tuition to JumpStart students, HCC and HCPSS will expand higher education opportunities for greater numbers of high school students,” said Dr. Daria J. Willis, president of Howard Community College. “Equity and access are at the center of the HCC mission of providing pathways to success, so this change in funding will transform the lives of Howard County students and families.”

“I am thrilled about the growth of this program and our students’ interest in pursuing this pathway,” said Superintendent Michael J. Martirano. “Removing barriers for students to access opportunities such as dual enrollment courses is going to be a powerful tool for us and while we did not originally plan for this implementation in the current school year, I am excited that we can now make this even more affordable for our families and continue to grow this wonderful partnership with Howard Community College.”

A key initiative in the strategic plans of HCC and HCPSS, the JumpStart partnership provides a pathway for students to be college and career-ready. Enrollment increased to 1,106 high school students currently taking courses on HCC’s campus and over 1,000 students projected to participate in dual enrollment courses at their high schools this year.

HCC will begin issuing refunds for tuition and consolidated fees to the students who are enrolled in HCC credit courses on the HCC campus for the fall 2022 semester, if they have already paid tuition and consolidated fees. HCC will bill HCPSS for these costs. The refunds will be processed on or before November 30, 2022.

In addition, beginning October 25, 2022, students enrolled in eligible JumpStart courses in their high schools will need to decide whether they want to earn HCC credit during spring 2023. If they choose to earn HCC credit, they will no longer have to pay tuition and consolidated fees.

HCPSS is reviewing cost estimates for this new expenditure and expects to request a supplemental appropriation through the Howard County Government to support this new legal requirement, which was not funded in the HCPSS Fiscal Year 2023 Operating Budget. In addition, HCPSS and HCC will update their existing Memorandum of Understanding to reflect this change.

Details about JumpStart dual enrollment programs are available online at