Fairmont Area Offering Students the Opportunity to Earn an AAS Degree While Finishing High School

The Fairmont Area School District is working in partnership with Minnesota West Community and Technical College to offer students the opportunity to earn an Associate of Arts Degree in conjunction with their High School Diploma.


The School District began working on expanding their college offerings at the High School level about five years ago, according to Kim Niss, who serves at Fairmont Area School’s Principal of Curriculum, Instruction and Research.


Fairmont Area Schools have been working with Minnesota West to develop a plan to work with students who want to earn an Associate of Arts Degree while still in High School through a combination of college in schools courses, some online courses and transfer courses.


Fairmont currently offers 26 CIS classes, compared to just six CIS class offerings five years ago, according to Niss.


There are currently 12 teachers at Fairmont High School teaching CIS classes, but Niss said several others are currently getting the credentials to do so.


Niss said if a student doesn’t want to get the whole AA Degree, they can still take as many CIS classes as they want and graduate High School with some college credits under their belt.


The CIS classes are primarily geared toward students who are juniors and seniors, but there are some exceptions where sophomores can take the classes, as well.