KnowledgeWorks early college high school is a solid model where students have the opportunity to earn as much as 60 hours of college credit while in high school. Students are provided with opportunities for on-campus experiences that build confidence and help the first-generation college-goer establish a “can-do” attitude toward college completion. Students begin college courses as early as the freshman year in high school and are provided with supports and services to insure their success. We know that our model is good for our students –and we are validated again!
A recent study of the Impact of Early College by the American Institute for Research (AIR) and funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation demonstrated the consistently positive outcomes of early college programs. The study by AIR stated confirmed that early college high school programs have a positive impact on college enrollment and degree attainment. Further, the impact of an early college high school on minority and first-generation of college-goers was even more substantial. In the AIR report, 81% of the early college students enrolled in college, and during the study period 25% of the students earned a college degree.
These results are no surprise to KnowledgeWorks – we see these results daily! KnowledgeWorks early college high schools have demonstrated success over and over again. Our Ohio early college high schools have demonstrated 4 year graduation rate of 96.9% which is much higher than both the state average (84.3%) and the district in which they reside (78.2%). In our Ohio schools the data shows that 95% of students continue in higher education, with an 87.3% persistence rate at four-year institutions. In these schools 79% earn at least one year of college credit and 30% earn 60 college credits – or an Associate Degree! These results are repeated over and over again – it is clear that KnowledgeWorks early college high schools continue to be a pipeline to college enrollment and college degrees for many low-income, minority students.
Deborah Howard, Senior Director of Operations, leads KnowledgeWorks' research and development work, concentrating on product design and innovation, evaluation and quality control. She blends her unique knowledge and experience in the field of education, non-profit and corporate sectors to help transform public education.