Nathan Hale High School

Nathan Hale
High School
Counseling Office

Running Start

Nathan Hale Running Start Information

Dual credit program at a community college:

  • Available for high school juniors and seniors
  • Tuition-free courses taken at the community college and taught by college instructors
  • Families pay for textbooks, fees, parking, any classes under 100 level. Summer school courses are not included
  • Transportation is not provided to the college
  • Fall, Winter and Spring quarters
  • Placement in college level courses is required for tuition free enrollment

Academic Rigor

  • College classes
  • Quarter system (11 weeks)
  • Fast paced learning environment
  • Critical thinking vs. memorizing
  • For every 1 hour of class, dedicate 2-3 hours to studying and completing homework

General Information

Running Start (RS) is a program for High School Juniors and Seniors to take college classes at Washington two-year colleges and earn high school and college credit at the same time. Tuition is free for a maximum of 15 credits per quarter in college-level courses numbered 100 or higher. However, the number of college credits each student may take free of tuition costs depends on how many classes the student is concurrently taking at the high school.

Students are responsible for tuition for pre-college courses (numbering below 100) and any credits that exceed their allowable limit. Students are responsible for the cost of books and transportation; however, fee waivers for these expenses (not including transportation) are available for students who qualify for free or reduced lunch.

Please Note: Running Start (RS) students must take full responsibility for keeping up-to-date on what’s happening at Nathan Hale High School, including important dates and deadlines (AP/PSAT/SAT Tests, Senior Prom, Ordering Graduation Supplies, Graduation Rehearsal Dates and Times, Senior Meetings and any other Senior related events).

Running Start students should check their Hale email regularly. Students should sign up to receive the Daily Bulletin or read the NHHS Daily Bulletin Online to stay informed of upcoming events and deadlines. Also visit the NHHS Calendar as well as the NHHS News Page for more information.

  • Are you excited about academic challenges?
  • Have you done well in your previous academic work?
  • Can you be assertive and ask for help?
  • Are you comfortable with diverse situations?
  • Are you an independent learner?
  • Do you have transportation to Running Start?

Questions to Ask Yourself when considering Running Start

  • Would you like to be part-time or full-time?
  • If full-time, would like to meet your high school graduation requirements and graduate from Hale?
  • If full-time, would you like to earn your Associates degree from the college and not complete your high school graduation requirements? Which Associates degree are you interested in and why?
  • What are your personal goals for doing running start, and what are the reasons that you feel ready to do this, considering pros and cons? Take some time to talk with your family about how this would affect your life as a student (transportation, sports, performing arts, leadership, social life, etc.). Check out the class schedules online to get an idea of the courses offered.
  • Which college would you like to attend and why?
  • Finally, please consider how you would react if classes ended up being online in the fall. Generally, we do not recommend first time Running Start students to take online classes.

Final Thoughts to Consider

  • Social life-Will you miss your high school relationships?​
  • Academic Rigor-are you ready?​
  • Maturity and Independence​
  • Cost of books, fees, parking, transportation ​
  • Conflict with high school schedules and holiday breaks​
  • Quarters vs. Semesters ​
  • Financial Aid Impact-Dual credits and completion rate will impact financial aid eligibility; please contact financial aid advisors for more information​
  • FERPA: Limited Parent Accessibility ​
Periods at Nathan HaleTuition Free College Credits

Semesters Vs. Quarters

  • At Nathan Hale we have semesters; you can take 6 credits per year (3 per semester)
  • At Running Start you can take up to 15 college credits per quarter (3 high school credits) for a total of 45 per year (9 high school credits)
diagram explaining that Hale has two semesters in the school year for a total of 6 high school credits. Community colleges have three quarters during the school year for a total of 9 high school credits.

College vs. High School Credits

One quarter-long 5 credit college class is equivalent to 1 credit at the high school. 

For example, if you take English 101 (5 credits) at the community college, that will count for the entire year of English 11 at the high school.

College CreditsHigh School Credits
A running start student is eligible up to a maximum of 15 college credits tuition-free per quarter. This is considered a full time college student. If you are part-time, you will be eligible for less credits per quarter.

Course Equivalencies Chart

This chart tells you what college classes count for which type of credit at the high school. For example, if you need to complete US history (2nd semester) and you are a running start student at North Seattle college you can take History 136, 146 OR 147 in order to complete that graduation requirement.

High School CoursesNorth and Central Seattle College Courses
English 11 A/BEnglish 101
English 12 A/BAny English Course 101 and above
Washington State HistoryHIST 214
World HistoryHIST 108, 126, 127, or 128
US History 11AHIST 136, 146, or 147
US History 11BHIST 137, 147, 148, 150, or 219
American GovernmentPol Sci 202
Health EducationHEA 150
MathMAT 100 and above
ScienceANY Science course 100 level and above
ArtDRA, MUS, ART, Dance – any above 100
CTEAny Course that mirrors an SPS CTE approved course at the 100 level or above
World Language and ElectivesWorld Language or any other 100 level and above
  • North Seattle Community College – most popular!
  • Shoreline Community College
  • Seattle Central Community College
  • Everett Community College
  • Cascadia College
  • Edmonds Community College

Running Start students meet with their high school counselor every quarter to talk about which classes they need to take in order to fulfill their high school graduation requirements.

Running Start students will meet with their college advisor to discuss their college goals and which classes they should take in addition to their high school graduation requirements.

Getting Started with Running Start Fall 2024

Visit the website for the community college you plan on attending and sign up for an info session. Attend an info session. Look at their requirements and apply to the school and get a student ID.

  1. Return a signed Parent/Guardian Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to Ms Takahashi
    • Please let Ms. Takahashi know if you have technology limitations. We can mail you forms.
  2. Provide proof of placement into college-level English and/or Math to Ms. Takahashi.
    • North Seattle College placement office info – Proof of Placement at North Seattle College is a self-directed assessment tool for English or a placement test for Math. Provide the results to Ms. Takahashi. Each college may have different requirements, consult their website.
  3. Obtain your transcript, credit sheet, and planning form from Ms. Takahashi.
  4. After you turn in your documents, you will be provided with a link to a survey.
  5. Once all of your documents have been submitted, you will be given a link to make a Running Start appointment with your counselor.
  6. Attend an advising session with your high school counselor to complete your Running Start Enrollment Verification Form (RSEVF), and to complete your high school plan.
    • Your RSEVF is completed with your high school counselor EVERY quarter you attend Running Start.
    • It is your responsibility to schedule an appointment with your counselor to complete your RSEVF at least 7 days before your registration date
    • Your registration will be blocked each quarter until you submit your RSEVF
  7. Complete Running Start registration at the college. This process will be different for each school. See their website for more information.
  8. Students must email their RSEVF to the Running Start office
  9. Students register for college classes online through the community college

Running Start Placement

  • Students should place into college level Math and English.
  • Placing into English 101 predicts that students are academically ready to take college level courses
  • Each college has placement options
    • Self-Directed Placement (choose English 101)
    • High School Transcript and GPA
    • SBA High School/SAT/ACT/AP Exam scores

Nathan Hale High School Running Start Responsibilities List


  1. View or attend the Nathan Hale Counseling Running Start Information Presentation
  2. Visit the website for the community college you plan on attending and sign up for an information session.
  3. Apply to the school you want to attend and receive a student ID number. Fill out the college Enrollment Packet.
  4. Return a signed Parent/Guardian Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to the Hale Counseling office.
  5. Provide results or proof of place-ment into college-level English and/or Math to Ms. Takahashi. Placement Test Information
  6. Obtain your transcript, credit sheet, and planning form from Ms. Takahashi.
  7. After you complete 1-6 you will be given a link to a survey from Ms Takahashi.
  8. After the survey you will make an appointment to see your counselor to complete your RSVF.
  9. Send signed RSVF to community college and work with them to register for classes. See their website for details.

Nathan Hale Counselor

  1. Running Start Meeting with student after steps 1-7 to fill out a RSVF. At meeting will discuss PT/FT, classes to take, progress toward graduation, etc.
  2. Meeting with students before each quarter to check progress and fill out RSVF.

Important Additional Information

  • Hale class schedule takes priority over Running Start schedules.
  • Students should sign up for the Daily Bulletin to receive notifications about Hale bell schedule changes and other important school news. Sign up here: Daily Bulletin
  • Students are responsible for their own transportation.
  • All Running Start college credits will be added to the high school transcript.
  • Students must meet with their Hale Counselors every quarter to make sure they are meeting their graduation requirements and to fill out the EVF.
  • If you earn college grades below 2.0 you will be placed on Academic Probation and given one additional quarter to improve your grade before you lose your standing.
  • Students are responsible for withdrawal/dropping a college class from Running Start.