The Texas Education Agency has approved the Socorro Independent School District to open Early College High School programs at El Dorado, Eastlake and Pebble Hills high schools.
The addition of the programs will make SISD the first district in Region 19, and one of few in the state, to offer an early college at every comprehensive high school in the district. Early College High School programs allow students the opportunity to graduate with 60+, free college credit hours and an associate’s degree before they leave high school.
“We’re eager and proud to be giving more students ways to get ahead and save money in college costs,” said Superintendent José Espinoza, Ed.D. “SISD is the right choice for endless opportunities that ensure our students are ready to achieve a lucrative future.”
SISD, in collaboration with the El Paso Community College, opened its first early college program in 2005, Mission Early College High School. The district opened three early college high schools in a span of three years; Socorro Early College in Socorro HS in 2014; Rams Early College in Montwood HS in 2015; and Trailblazers Early College in Americas HS in 2016.
SISD’s early college high schools are saving students thousands of dollars in college tuition. Last year alone, SISD students collectively enrolled in college courses to earn some 26,000 college credit hours valued at some $9 million in college cost savings.
“College tuition and fees keep rising, and we don’t want finances to be a reason for our students to not further their education,” Espinoza said. “Early college programs give our students a head start, and nothing – absolutely nothing – says students are ready for college better than students attending college while in high school.”