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Running Start

Running Start provides students with the option of attending college in 11th and 12th grade, simultaneously earning of high school and college/university credit.

Running Start students and their families do not pay tuition, but they do pay college fees and buy their own books, as well as provide their own transportation.

By earning both high school and college credit, students accelerate their progress through the education system. Students taking a full Running Start course load for two years may earn an associate’s degree by the end of their senior year of high school. 

Learn more about running start.


In order to participate in Running Start, you must:

  • Have junior or senior standing in high school
  • Apply in March prior to the fall quarter you plan to attend 
  • Enroll in courses that are approved by your high school counselor to meet graduation requirements
  • Complete the college coursework and pass the class
  • Maintain full-time high school enrollment so that your graduation status is not jeopardized
  • Be responsible for knowing the registration date(s) and deadline(s) for district and college registration
  • Be responsible for transportation, lab fees, and books
  • Take a placement test administered by the college

Community Colleges

Here is a list of local community colleges that participate in the Running Start program. To learn more, contact your high school counselor.

Tacoma Community College