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Early/Middle College

Tuition Free!

Bangor Public Schools Middle College is collaborative project between Bangor Public Schools and Lake Michigan College as a five-year, program combining the best elements of high school and college.

Students Using Technology

The Career Academy/Virtual Vantage High School offers students enrolled at Bangor Public Schools the opportunity to fulfill their requirements for a high school diploma while completing a rigorous college preparatory coursework experience gaining valuable college readiness skills, their high school diplomas, and earning up to sixty-two (62) transferable college credits towards their undergraduate degree and/or an Associate Degree Lake Michigan College.

Students begin the program at the start of either their tenth or eleventh grade, and if needed are provided an additional year (5th year) beyond their expected year of graduation to complete the program. This is a public early college high school. There is no cost to students or their families for attending. Tuition and required texts and fees will be paid by the school district.

Early/Middle College is a unique program for sophomores, juniors, seniors, and 5th year students who are mature, self-motivated, and ready to learn in a college setting. Students are offered an academically challenging environment to do their best academic work. The students have full access to Lake Michigan College’s onsite and/or online range of student support mechanisms and activities, and enrolled students are deeply involved in all aspects of high school life, assuming leadership roles in areas including student government, the honor society, and the fine and performing arts programs. The program will focus on students acquiring a liberal arts degree.

College and Work Success is our Goal

This is a two-phase program. In the first phase grades 7-9, students are provided with a rigorous college preparatory curriculum. Students acquire and demonstrate “hard” academic skills in English, Mathematics, Science, and Social Studies, as well as “soft” social and emotional skills.

“Hard and soft skills” are fundamental to student success in the post-secondary environment, and are embedded into the curriculum and school culture through a variety of “learner domains”: Attendance, Preparation, Follow-Through, Communication, and Responsibility. Students will not be eligible for the Early/Middle college preparatory program if they do not demonstrate true “college readiness” in both academic hard and soft skills. Upon completion of the college preparatory program in 9th grade, students transition to become both High School and part-time Lake Michigan College students where they begin work on their LMC general education and Bangor High School completion requirements in the sophomore year.

A core component of the Bangor Public Schools Early/Middle College experience is integrated dual enrollment in college coursework at Lake Michigan College, South Haven location. During the 10th grade academic year, students are enrolled in one college course each semester.  11th grade students take 2 college courses per semester, 12th grade 3 college courses per semester and finally grade 13 the student will take 4 courses per semester plus their final class to meet the high school graduation requirement.

The transfer rate for college coursework should be close to 100% whether it be to a Michigan college or university, depending on student grades. The intent is for students to successfully complete college courses--again, at a substantially higher pass rate than traditional college students. Lake Michigan College will provide student support services including a mandatory orientation, acclimating them to life as a college student.  Students must also schedule at least one appointment per semester to meet with an LMC adviser to discuss academic progress, college planning and preparation, as well as academic skills and other areas of concern to the student.

Consideration / Requirements for Student Admission to Virtual Vantage Academy Early/Middle College Program

  • 2.5 Overall GPA for High School Awarded Credit Courses.
  • Attach ACT or Compass scores and high school transcripts with enrollment paperwork.
  • Students must meet specific test and course prerequisite requirements for each course registration.
  • Qualifying course specific scores:
    • ACT/PLAN – Math 18, Reading 17, English 18
    • Plan scores can be used if a student has not taken the ACT.  Plan is only applicable while the student is in high school.
    • Compass scores – Pre-Algebra Math 46 (M), Reading 78 ®, Writing 78 (E)
  • Currently on track to obtain a high school diploma (appropriate course track and
  • success)
  •  Approval of the principal and appropriate school staff
  •  Student Letter (Why I would like to be admitted to the Middle College)

Evaluating Students

Organizationally, students are full time students. They are not just high school students who dual enroll in a few college courses. Instead, they are “jointly enrolled and admitted” to Bangor Public Schools and Lake Michigan College as part of the Early/Middle College program. Students who demonstrate an average rate of progress will spend eight (8) semesters in the program (not including 9th grade), with the last two (2) in the 13th year as full Lake Michigan College students while still taking a single course in their high school. All students will take the same assessments currently being taken at the high school (MEAP, MME etc.), but in addition will be required to take the Compass test. Culturally, students will eventually be fully immersed in the college environment as in their senior and 13th years.

Course Alignments

Students enrolled in the Early/Middle College program must meet the following MINIMUM (20 Credit) requirements to receive a high school diploma (as required in the Michigan Merit Curriculum):

  • 4 Math: including Algebra I, Geometry, Algebra II, and a senior-level math course taken at the college
  • 4 English Language Arts: including one taken at the college
  • 3 Science: including Biology and either Chemistry or Physics
  • 3 Social Studies: including  Civics,  Economics, U.S. History, and World History
  • 1 Physical Education/Health
  • 1 Applied Arts
  • 1 Online Learning Experience (minimum 16 hours)
  • 2 World Language (beginning with the class of 2016)

In addition, the students will work toward completion of 62 credits to meet the requirements for an associate's degree. This Associate of Arts will include a MACRAO certificate, which are general credits in subject areas that will satisfy the general education requirements for many Michigan colleges and universities. MACRAO is not a guarantee of credit transfer! The Lake Michigan College adviser will work with each student about this situation, depending on where they would choose to continue their education.

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