Akron Early College High School in Akron, Ohio, is completing their application process for the 2017-18 school year, and as it has been in past years, the number of applications exceeded the number of spaces available for incoming students by almost 200. The early college has been acknowledged an Ohio School of Promise four consecutive years in a row, and was named a National Blue Ribbon School in 2013 by U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. Principal Cheryl Connolly insists their success is due to the hard work of teachers, and the willingness of students to rise to the challenge.
“The misconception for many is that we only take the top notch kids,” says Connelly. “But that’s not true. We take those tough, gritty C students who have had challenges and learned to overcome them.”
Their recruitment process relies on recommendations from teachers, middle school principals, and school counselors, as well as reaching out to individual schools and organizations within the community. In addition to meeting with eighth graders and parents from Akron’s public schools and throughout Summit county, Connolly explains that they develop relationships within the county’s parochial and charter schools, too. Communication is key.
Want to learn more about how a strong partnership between higher education and K-12 is empowering Akron Early College High School students to defy expectations?