Early College High Schools Grow Dramatically

One of the newest stars in the education constellation is combining secondary education with college and it has taken off dramatically. In just one major program this year, 159 schools in 24 states operate with an expected 100,000 students served at 250 sites within the next few years. What are early college programs? Mortarboard.jpg

Early college schools are partnerships between public secondary schools and higher education institutions. These small schools are designed so that students accumulate high school and college credit simultaneously. Going beyond typical dual enrollment programs, the early college curriculum is a coherent unit, with high school and college-level work blended into a single academic program that positions students to leave high school with one to two years of college credit. This initiative funded by conventional revenues but augmented by numerous foundations aims at breakthroughs with youth underrepresented in college enrollments.

A stunning example of using almost every progressive reform idea is that of the Empowering Students program of the Georgia state colleges. It begins in the 7th grade with schools on college campuses, uses students as resources, involves community volunteers, integrates curriculum and impressively raises student aspirations.

This astonishing movement is a striking example of an institutional bypass! A major initiative is coordinated by the Early College High School program of Jobs for the Future. There are others as has been noted on this weblog earlier.

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