About a hundred Valley high school students will miss out on having an on-campus college experience this fall due to COVID-19.
Susquehanna and Bucknell universities are permitting dual-enrolled high school students to participate in virtual classes for college credits but won't allow them to be physically in the classroom.
About 100 students — mostly dual-enrolled students from Selinsgrove Area School District — take one course each semester at Susquehanna University free of charge, spokeswoman Amanda O'Rourke said.
Bucknell accepts between eight and 10 high school students from Lewisburg and Mifflinburg districts each semester and will also limit their participation in a college course to online, spokesman Mike Ferlazzo said.
Joe Stroup, director of instruction and curriculum at Midd-West, said the decision to keep dual-enrolled high school students off the college campus won't negatively impact the seven Midd-West students who signed up for college credits at Susquehanna this fall since most are taking math courses that don't require a lab or in-class presence.
"They can (participate in virtual classes at SU) right from Midd-West High School," he said. "It makes it easier to work out their schedule."
At Bloomsburg University, the 300 Valley high school students participating in the Advanced College Experience (ACE) program are treated the same as a traditional student and will be allowed on campus beginning Aug. 17 depending on how their class is being offered, spokesman Tom McGuire said.
Between 25 and 30 percent of the university's courses will be offered in person on campus and the rest of the courses are either online or a blend of the two, he said.
Participation in the ACE program at Bloomsburg, which offers high school juniors and seniors an opportunity to earn up to 12 college credits at 75 percent tuition reduction, has grown in the past few years from 110 in 2015 to 232 in 2019. This year, 300 students enrolled in the program, McGuire said.