Return to Headlines

The Boston Globe features PSJA’s early college initiative

PHARR –Pharr-San Juan-Alamo ISD’s early college initiatives were featured recently by The Boston Globe, in a story published on December 7, 2015. globe


The article, "Early College’ Offers Chance to Achieve In High School” written by Michael Levenson, highlights the school district’s efforts of providing early college opportunities for students. These efforts are helping students obtain a college-level education while in high school.

According to the article, school districts in Boston and cities across the U.S. are starting to rethink the high school experience and turning towards early college model districts like PSJA ISD, for inspiration.


PSJA ISD has eight early college high schools, where students can graduate with up to two years of college or an Associate Degree in various fields. Every semester, more than 3,500 PSJA students participate in dual-enrollment coursework with the district's higher education partner South Texas College and the number is increasing annually.

“Love it. Love it,” said Rahn Dorsey, Mayor Martin J. Walsh’s chief of education in the article. “It’s the wave of the future. It adds to the rigor that we need at the high school level, and we’ve learned that high school students can step up to the challenge...Why not acclimate you to that level of work as early as possible?”


For Nancy Hoffman, a member of the Massachusetts Board of Higher Education and a vice president at Jobs for the Future, PSJA’s approach to early college is a smart way to address the lack of education in today’s workforce.


“If you agree with the premise that, for most jobs, you need at least some post-secondary education, this is an extremely successful strategy,” said Hoffman in the article.


In addition to The Boston Globe, PSJA ISD’s comprehensive, innovative approach and proven results have garnered the attention of The New York Times, PBS News Hour, The Atlantic and other national publications. Top officials from the U.S. Department of Education, the Texas Education Agency and local, state and federal elected officials have highlighted PSJA ISD's efforts in providing early college opportunities for all students.


Click here for the full story.