In his Sunday editorial in the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette, Glenn Sharfman makes a case against the early college high school model because the schools result in students starting college “underprepared and overcredentialed.” He supports this by an example of one student who attends the college at which he works.
I agree with some of the points Sharfman makes, such as, “It is a disservice to encourage students to take college classes before they legitimately are ready in the hopes that having many hours of college credit or an associate’s degree, along with a high school diploma, will make them learned or prepared for the workplace.”
But, done well, the early college high school model can work. It because they work that the City University of New York is pursuing early college high schools to increase their college graduation rates, as noted in this Monday’s Wall Street Journal article. (The early college high school program being sponsored by the City University of New York is in partnership with KnowledgeWorks, the Smart Scholars program and the State University of New York.)
At a recent visit to Toledo Early College High School (TECHS), the students were in agreement that their college classes were easy compared to the high schools one. This is because the rigorous high school classes at TECHS are taught with a goal of preparing students for the college environment.