SAC Partners with New Frontiers Public Schools for New Early College High School
August 12, 2021
Pictured left to right are: Dr. Frank L. Madla III, Board President for New Frontiers Public Schools, Dr. Mike Flores, Chancellor of Alamo Colleges District, Harold Oliver, Board Member of New Frontiers Public Schools, and Dr. Robert Vela, President of San Antonio College.
Local high school students will soon have the opportunity to earn their associate degree in three of San Antonio’s fastest-growing industries.
San Antonio College has partnered with New Frontiers Public Schools to create an early college high school offering educational paths that can meet the city’s emerging workforce needs.
The Imelda Davis Early College High School – named for the late and beloved community leader - will focus its offerings on nursing, information technology and education.
“We are excited to announce this wonderful new partnership that will prepare students for important and crucial careers within the local workforce, “said SAC President Dr. Robert Vela. “This collaboration will grow and strengthen the San Antonio community on many levels.”
This initiative comes on the heels of SAC receiving the coveted Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence and a $15 million gift from philanthropists MacKenzie Scott and Dan Jewett, both of which spotlight the college’s razor-sharp focus on improving educational outcomes for students in chronically underserved populations.
The school aims to supplement coursework with real hands-on experiences. Internships with private sector IT partners will be sought to allow students to gain professional experience. Education-tracked students will gain critical classroom experience as New Frontiers Public Schools will explore the use of district campuses as laboratory schools to provide students’ with hands-on experience. School leaders are also exploring a non-traditional school day schedule.
“We take great pride offering a premiere high school opportunity that makes college accessible for all students,” New Frontiers Public Schools CEO Alfredo Segura Jr. said. “We are proud to partner with San Antonio College as we believe that schools like this one will have long-term impacts on our community’s work force.”
The SAC-New Frontiers partnership is perfectly aligned with current workforce needs and trends in San Antonio. The SA Works 2019 fourth-quarter report projected that a 13 percent increase in health care jobs will occur by 2024. Information technology jobs are also projected to increase by 11 percent from by 2024, outpacing national growth by 3.4 percent. Additionally, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that the employment of kindergarten and elementary teachers will increase by 3 percent by 2028.
New Frontiers Public Schools has demonstrated success in the early college domain. The public charter school network currently operates the Frank L. Madla Early College High School – in partnership with Palo Alto College. The school was recently identified as one of the 10 best public charter high schools in San Antonio, according to U.S. News & World Report and holds an “A” rating under the Texas Education Agency Accountability System.
Early College High Schools (ECHS) employ an innovative school design that allows students least likely to attend college an opportunity to earn a high school diploma and up to 60 college credit hours. Students have the opportunity to earn both their distinguished high school diploma and their associate degree - all at no cost.