Oct. 15,2012 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
NACOGDOCHES — Students in Nacogdoches Independent School District’s Early College High School program will experience even more university campus life and gain new study skills with planned additions to the program.
NISD officials met with representatives from the Texas Education Agency and Institute for Public Schools on Wednesday, Oct. 10, to discuss progress thus far with the new program. Early College High School allows ninth through 12th grade high school students to take courses at Stephen F. Austin State University while attending Nacogdoches High School classes.
“The conversations with the TEA representative gave us positive feedback on the implementation of our program and the future success of our students,” said
NISD College and Career Coordinator Keri Launius. “Our ‘school-within-a –school’ model is a traditionally successful model that meets the needs of a variety of students, both academically and socially.”
Dr. P. Sampson, the ECHS liaison at SFASU, echoed Launius’ positive sentiments.
“ As a first generation college graduate, I am so pleased that this program is available for students,” Sampson said. “When they learn they can do college work, then we can keep them working in high school and be college graduates. I am so impressed with the hard work of the students, faculty and administrators. Everyone wants the students to succeed.”
During the ECHS review meeting, “We talked about the design of our program and how our year is going. We discussed our support systems that are in place, and our goals for implementing new technology, service learning, and collaboration with SFA, all of which help to develop our students as 21st Century learners,” Launius said.
To meet the service-learning goal, officials said students will design and execute a project by working with their peers, the community and their teacher. The service-learning teaching method allows students to use the curriculum-based skills they are learning in a way that is of benefit to their community.
The more-advanced nature of college courses also calls for a higher level of study skills. ECHS students will expand their study skills by developing an understanding of how to use technology as a learning tool, “…as well as learning how to appropriately use their cell phones and the various social medias available to them,” Launius said.
Finally, NISD students will have the opportunity to experience typical university social outings, Launius explained.
“We are looking into additional ways for students to experience the college culture by going to an SFASU football game, as well as attending fine arts events such as the upcoming play ‘The Madwoman of Chaillot.’” she said.
This fall, more than 20 NHS students are being transported to the university twice a week to attend a speech course for the inaugural year of the NISD program.