Benchmark 1 – Target Population
- Admission Policy
- Communication Plan
- Current Marketing Brochure
- Enrollment Application
- Lottery Procedures
- Recruitment Plan
The Early College High School shall serve, or include plans to scale up to serve, students in grades 9 through 12, and shall target and enroll students who are at risk of dropping out of school as defined by the Public Education Information Management System (PEIMS) and who might not otherwise go to college.
All ECHSs must implement and meet the following requirements:
- The ECHS recruitment and enrollment processes shall identify, recruit, and enroll the subpopulations of at-risk students (as defined by PEIMS), including, but not limited to, students who are of limited English proficiency, students with disabilities, or students who have failed a state administered assessment. Enrollment decisions shall not be based on state assessment scores, discipline history, teacher recommendation, parent or student essays, minimum grade point average (GPA), or other criteria that create barriers for student enrollment.
- The ECHS shall identify, recruit, and enroll subpopulations (in addition to those who are at risk as defined by PEIMS) that are historically underrepresented in college courses (e.g., first generation college goers, students of low socioeconomic status, African American, Hispanic, Native American.)
- The ECHS shall clearly document recruitment and enrollment policies and practices; refining and improving them annually based on data reviews.
- Recruitment and enrollment processes (including marketing and recruitment plans, materials, and timelines) shall include input from key stakeholders (e.g., parents and community members; postsecondary partners); target student populations as described in 1 and 2 above; and include regular activities to educate students, counselors, principals, parents, and school board and community members.
- For admissions, the ECHS shall use either a performance-blind, open-access lottery system that encourages and considers applications from all students (all students have an equal opportunity for acceptance, regardless of background or academic performance) or a weighted lottery that favors students who are at risk or who are part of the targeted subpopulations for the ECHS.
Required Activities & Products
- All products shall be published on the ECHS’s website and be made available to TEA upon request.
- All products shall be maintained in accordance with the local records retention policy.
- Written admission policy and enrollment application
- Written recruitment plan including a timeline of recruitment and enrollment events, and recruitment materials for distribution at feeder schools and other appropriate locations in the community
- Brochures and marketing in Spanish, English, and/or other relevant language(s)\Written communication plan for targeting identified audiences, parents, community members, school board, higher education personnel, etc.
Access Outcomes-Based Measures
|Data Indictaors||Provisional Early College||Early College||Distinguished Early College|
|Requirements||Must meet at-risk students for incoming 9th graders and at least three additional target population data indicators||Must meet at-risk students for incoming 9th graders and at least three additional target population data indicators||Must meet at-risk students for incoming 9th graders and at least four additional target population data indicators|
|ECHS proportionate to or over-represents at-risk students for incoming 9th graders||No more than 20% points under district||No more than 15% points under district||No more than 10% points under district|
|ECHS proportionate to or over-represents African American students||No more than 10% points under district||No more than 5% points under district||Meets or over-represents district|
|ECHS proportionate to or over-represents Hispanic students||No more than 10% points under district||No more than 5% points under district||Meets or over-represents district|
|ECHS proportionate to or over-represents economically disadvantaged students||No more than 10% points under district||No more than 5% points under district||Meets or over-represents district|
|ECHS proportionate to or over-represents males||No more than 10% points under district||No more than 5% points under district||Meets or over-represents district|
|ECHS proportionate to or over-represents ELL and SWDs||Not taken into account for designation||Not taken into account for designation||No more than 5% points under|
Incoming 9th grade candidates must first complete a simple standard application that contains:
- Current contact information for their parents and themselves
- Demographic data (such 8th grade course load)
- Three short-answer student questions to be completed by the student
- Desire to be considered for enrollment
- Description of how they persevered through a challenging situation
- Long-term goal they think they can accomplish at ECHS
- Two short-answer questions to be completed by the parent.
All candidates are ranked with the following criteria:
- Students that are listed as ‘At-Risk’ by the Federal government.
- Free and reduced lunch status.
- First generation college student in their family.
- Limited English Proficiency (LEP).
- Historically under-represented minorities accepted and enrolled in higher education.
- Consideration is also given in terms of the sub-populations %’s enrolled at the district level.
- Completion of the application.
Application and Acceptance Timeline:
- Recruitment efforts are made at the middle schools in October and November.
- Open House sessions are held in November and December.
- Applications are available during the first week of December.
- Application deadline is the day before the district goes on the winter holiday break.
- Late January, students receive their acceptance letters.
- By the start of February, students accept or reject offer.
- Students who have accepted then tour the campus and become college registered by the end of the first week of February.
- Late February students are inducted into ECHS at a formal ceremony.
- Any student not accepted can request a ‘waitlist’ status.
- They are to write the principal or come to the campus to request the designation.
- The above criteria are applied for wait-list students.
- As student placements open up waitlist applicants are notified of their acceptance.
The Early College High School markets the ‘Transformational Power’ of the school program by regularly attending local business chamber of commerce events, community service meetings, presenting and celebrating program components (including faculty accomplishments) at all district-wide showcase events, visiting non-district middle schools, hosting regular meetings with college partners (IHE – Brookhaven College), delivers presentations to ‘Best-Practice’ conferences and select professional development trainings.
Special program presentations will be given at local church and community business venues to attract not only parents and new students but forge connections with a variety of different constituents. Here are a few examples:
- Monthly meetings with the Farmers Branch & Metrocrest Chambers of Commerce
- Quarterly attendance at the Metrocrest community events
- Participation in monthly local community lunches hosted by clergy to
address social-related concerns. Students attend.
- Students serve monthly as Brookhaven College Tour guides or ambassadors for younger school district students.
- Host two Open House events per semester for parents and community.
- Plan and participate in student-led performances for local parents and their younger children (once per semester).
- Local business, education, and community partners participate in our College and Career Readiness Fair week in early January.
- Attend weekly Institute of Higher Education (IHE) meetings with Brookhaven College personnel; convene bi-annual meeting with ECHS Advisory/Leadership team to review all achievement and designation data.
- Meet personally each term with school Superintendent to discuss the State of Early College High School.
- Present three times a year ECHS faculty to the C-FBISD School Board of Trustees to honor and celebrate their dedication and passion for students.
Additional communication tools include social media announcements via the school’s Twitter page, Facebook, Instagram. The newly designed ParentSquare communication program enables school personnel to communicate directly with parents via texts, emails and voice messages. These parents can then interact with the communication and promptly respond. PTSA published a monthly newsletter as well.
Early College High School incoming freshmen candidates must first complete a short standardized application that contains requests for student and parent contact information and demographic data including 8th grade course work. Students and parents are asked to complete short answer questions in order to explain why they want the young person to attend Early College High School. An additional question asks the student to describe a time they had to overcome academic adversity in middle school. Both the parent and student then describe a long-term goal they think will be reached if the child attends and completes the high school program.
A weighted lottery is then applied to the student data gathered from the parent(s), students and school data demographics. The lottery does favor students that are considered ‘At-Risk’ by Federal guidelines. The early mission of all Texas Early College High School programs was to elevate or launch students coded ‘At-Risk’ into the best possible position to acquire a two-year Associates degree and then to gain access to 4-year university programs. Sub-population characteristics are also weighted but not as much as the ‘At-Risk’ category. Listed below are the weighted categories:
- At-Risk identification (by Federal Government standards).
- Economically disadvantaged (Free and Reduced Lunch).
- First generation in the family to go to college.
- Underrepresented minorities in higher education.
- Limited English Proficiency.
The application essays are checked for completion and do not have weighted value.
These weighted categories are then added together to produce an initial acceptance list from the local district middle schools. Out-of-district enrollments do occur. These students are considered with these categories and must also meet all district transfer requirements as described by school board policy.
Wait-listed students are often accepted in the summer in that the initially accepted list of students do not all accept their ECHS enrollment invitation.
Occasionally, mid-year winter enrollments do occur. When they do, students are evaluated under the same criterion as Fall enrollments.
The Early High School recruitment plan focuses on accepting 95% of its incoming freshmen class from the six school district middle schools. Because of our size and mid-year enrollments from the previous year our freshmen enrollment numbers tend to hover between 86 and 92 students total. The recruitment timeline is listed below:
|Month||Time in month||Event description|
|September||Last two weeks||C-FB Assoc. Gifted Talented Open House|
|October||Early to mid||Visit Middle School AVID classrooms w students|
|Visit local parochial, charter and private schools|
|Visit to middle schools to speak to all 8th graders|
|November||Early||All C-FBISD 8th grade students visit ECHS|
|8th grade parent Open House on a Saturday|
|Mid||Attend a district sponsored Stellar Program night|
|Host a table at the C-FBISD Literacy Night|
|Late||Shadow Day for specifically interested 8th graders|
|(Shadow Day also includes mid-year enrollees)|
|December||Early||Second Open House for parents on a Saturday|
|Applications distributed to middle schools|
|Mid||Applications due to ECHS|
|January||Mid||Acceptance letters sent to applicants; visits to middle schools by the principal and counselor.|
|Late||Accepted students send ECHS commitment letters|
|February||Early||Committed students tour ECHS|
|Mid||Committed students and parents attend a ‘Transformational Tour’; Q & A with 12th graders|
|April||Early||Special ‘Obligation’ Ceremony occurs along with the first round of College TSI preparation|
|Mid||TSI Reading assessment is given incoming 9th graders on the Brookhaven campus|
|June||Early||Mandatory Success Camp occurs for all incoming freshmen; a second round of TSI assessments are given (reading, math, and writing).|
|Mid to late||Additional TSI academic support provided; a third round of TSI assessments are given.|