The Early College High School (ECHS) Concept

Early College High School (ECHS) is a school reform model that targets students at risk of dropping out of school. ECHS blends high school and college work to enable students to graduate with a high school diploma and an associate degree or 60 college credit hours toward a baccalaureate degree. General information about this program can be found in the Texas ECHS Map, and What is ECHS sections of this website. Those interested in designing and planning a new ECHS will find in-depth resources organized by topic in our Resource Guide.

Overview of Early College High Schools in Texas

News & Announcements

Save the Date: Early College High School Best Practices Summit — August 4 - 5, 2016 (More Info)

April 25, 2016

TEA announces 13 Early College High School Demonstration Site grants

AUSTIN — The Texas Education Agency, working with Education Service Center Region 13 in Austin, today announced that Early College High School (ECHS) Demonstration Site grants have been awarded to 13 campuses across the state.

The ECHS Demonstration Site Grant provides financial and technical support to high-performing ECHS campuses that are implementing defined best practices. Campuses designated as ECHS demonstration sites (listed by school district) are:

  • Aldine ISD - Victory Early College High School
  • Bryan ISD - Bryan Collegiate High School
  • Comal ISD - Memorial Early College High School with St. Phillip's
  • Corpus Christi ISD - Collegiate High School
  • Dallas ISD - Trinidad "Trini" Garza Early College High School
  • Humble ISD - Quest Early College High School
  • Pasadena ISD - Pasadena Early College High School
  • Pharr-San Juan-Alamo ISD (2) - PSJA North Early College High School;
    PSJA Thomas Jefferson T-STEM Early College High School
  • Roscoe Collegiate ISD - Roscoe Collegiate High School
  • Spring ISD - Early College Academy at Southridge
  • Taylor ISD - Legacy Early College High School
  • Ysleta ISD - Valle Verde Early College High School

ECHS demonstration site campuses will provide mentoring, technical assistance, webinars and open house opportunities to new and prospective ECHS school leaders. The selected ECHS demonstration sites will also share best practices content through the ECHS website and regional and statewide conferences.

The 13 campuses have been designated as ECHS demonstration sites for the grant period of April 1, 2016 through May 31, 2017. Campuses eligible for funding were required to have been a Texas Education Agency-designated ECHS for at least four years (with a graduated class) and be at an exemplar level in at least three domains of the ECHS Blueprint.

To learn more about early college high schools, visit the Texas Education Agency website at

Texas Education Agency (April 25, 2016) TEA announces 13 early college high school demonstration site grants. Retrieved from

April 19, 2016

TEA Announces Early College High School Designations

AUSTIN — Commissioner of Education Mike Morath today announced approval of 16 new Early College High School (ECHS) designations for the 2016-2017 school year.

Early college high schools are innovative high schools that allow students least likely to attend college an opportunity to earn a high school diploma and either an associate degree or at least 60 college credit hours toward a baccalaureate degree. Under this model, an ECHS provides dual credit at no cost to students; offers rigorous instruction and accelerated courses; provides academic and social support services to help students succeed; increases college readiness; and reduces barriers to college access.

"The early college high school concept is just one innovative approach embraced by Texas school systems to offer students an avenue for success," said Commissioner Morath. "With more than 150 campuses, Texas continues to be a national ECHS leader in providing high school students with college credit while saving families money." The following campuses were given approval for provisional designation for the 2016-2017 school year:

  • Beaumont ISD - Beaumont ISD Early College High School
  • Burleson ISD - Burleson Collegiate High School
  • Crowley ISD - Crowley Collegiate Early College High School
  • Dallas ISD - Seagoville Pathways to Technology Early College High School at Eastfield
  • Judson ISD - Judson High School: An Early College IB World School
  • Judson ISD - Karen Wagner Early College High School
  • Judson ISD - Mackey Early College High School
  • Kermit ISD - Kermit Early College High School
  • Lubbock ISD - Estacado Early College High School
  • Port Arthur ISD - Port Arthur Early College High School
  • Raul Yzaguirre School For Success Early College High School (Houston)
  • Raymondville ISD - Raymondville High School
  • Robstown ISD - Robstown Early College High School
  • Round Rock ISD - Round Rock ISD Early College High School
  • Silsbee ISD - Silsbee Early College High School
  • Socorro ISD - Rams Early College High School

School districts and charters approved for provisional ECHS designation must complete certain technical assistance activities during the spring and summer. In addition, a final, signed memorandum of understanding with an institution of higher education partner must be submitted to TEA before the start of the 2016-2017 school year. Once designated, campuses receive technical assistance and coaching support to operate as an approved ECHS.

TEA will review applications for renewal of existing ECHS campuses in the coming weeks. More information about early college high schools can be found on the TEA website at

Texas Education Agency (April. 19, 2016) TEA announces early college high school designations. Retrieved from

Feb 3, 2016

Click on the following links to learn more about the Early College High School Demonstration Site Sub-Grant.
[powerpoint] [video] [transcript]

Nov 9, 2015

Click on the following link to view the recorded ECHS Designation Application webinar. The PPT presentation of the ECHS Designation Application webinar can also be downloaded from this location.

Nov 2, 2015

Click on the following link to register and view the recorded technical assistance webinar:


Oct 30, 2015

2016-2017 ECHS Designation Application is Available:

May 5, 2015

     Austin Community College Expands Early College High School Program

April 13, 2015

     Texas a Leader in Early College High Schools

April 7, 2015

     TEA Announces Early College High School Designations

March 16, 2015

     Early College Success Gets Attention

March 6, 2015

    Early College High Schools Proliferate

    GTF Scholars

February 9, 2015

ECHS Kick-Off Conference on February 9th - 10th

February 9, 2015

The Texas Education Agency is excited to announce Education Service Center Region 13 (ESC 13) as the recipient of the 2014-15 Early
College High School (ECHS) Technical Assistance and Leadership Coaching Contract. The purpose of the project is to provide support, leadership, and training to leadership teams at ECHS-designated campuses to ensure fidelity of implementation according to the ECHS Blueprint.

ESC 13 will utilize existing research on ECHS along with data from activities such as needs assessments, site visits, and summative evaluations to identify areas requiring support at ECHS campuses in Texas. ESC 13 will contract ECHS experts as leadership coaches to ensure that the existing knowledge base, Blueprint, technical assistance, coaching, resources, and evaluation are aligned.

Resources and support will include technical assistance (including on-site support), regional and statewide professional development opportunities, best practices guidance, webinars, websites, listserv(s), and other web-based tools.

Please share this announcement with anyone involved in ECHS implementation, including district/campus administrators, IHE partners, teachers, parents, and students.

For additional information, please contact Jessica Snyder (TEA) at or Erin Romero (ESC 13) at

TEA / ESC 13 Technical Assistance
ECHS Calendar of Events

Event / Milestone Date

Advisory Committee


Kick-Off Meeting

February 9-10, 2015

Site Visits

February - August 2015


February - August 2015

Best Practices Summit

August 6-7, 2015

Best Practices / Website Development

Ongoing (Summer 2015 rollout)

Regional Consortium Meetings