Keith King, a former Colorado Senator and longtime education advocate, launched the Colorado Early Colleges model through Colorado Springs Early Colleges (CSEC) in 2007. Colorado Early Colleges was founded so that every student, regardless of background or skill level, will achieve mastery and will demonstrate that they can succeed in high school, in college, and in their chosen career. No exceptions; no excuses. In addition, the school is focused to help students avoid remediation*
Since 2007, CSEC and CECFC have produced impressive numbers: each of the 650 students have graduated with some college credits, more than 95 students have graduated with a complete associate degree, two students have earned a complete bachelor’s degree, and more than 26,000 college credits have been earned by Colorado Early College students, which equates to a financial savings of more than $5 million to its students and families. Including students already enrolled at CECDC, all three campuses will collectively have 1,350 students enrolled this fall, a 380 percent growth since inception.
“Rising education costs, graduation rates and overall shifts in education have proven that the traditional high school model isn’t working for many of today’s students. One of the largest benefits to CECDC is that we are able to give students choices and support them as they explore career options and work to prepare for a future that drives them and contributes to our workforce,” said John Etzell, head of school for CECDC. “All of our educators and administrators are here because they believe in our mission of supporting every student, and we are excited that we can bring that support through this education model to Douglas County families and students.”
An Education Model Centered Around Student Choice
CECDC is focused on helping students better prepare for the real world through individualized attention in academics, workforce readiness and leadership. The school is for every student willing to make the commitment to his or her future. Students who are struggling in other academic settings, students who are looking to earn college credit for free while in high school, students looking to get technical education while in high school and students looking for a new and supportive high school environment are all the right fit for CECDC.
The school works closely with Metro State University, University of Colorado Denver, Arapahoe Community College, Red Rocks Community College and the Community College of Aurora to ensure that its students get the education they are looking for and the support they desire while earning college credits. Its Parker campus is a small and intimate setting that provides a supportive and encouraging environment with small class sizes and personalized college and career planning that maximizes students’ opportunity to earn college credit while in a positive school atmosphere.
While CECDC is located in Parker, it is truly a Douglas County school. Busing is currently offered from Highlands Ranch and Castle Rock. A carpool network is being established in Parker, Aurora and other locations. Staff, teachers and parents partner together to enable students to attend and benefit from CECDC.
Informational meetings are held regularly, including upcoming sessions on June 2, June 11 and June 21 at the Parker campus. To register for an informational session, to enroll or for more information about CECDC, visit www.cecdc914.org, email firstname.lastname@example.org (mailto:inquire@
* According to a legislative report, 40 percent of 2011 high school graduates in Colorado who enrolled in state higher education institutions needed remediation. On a national level, more than 1/3 of U.S. 11th graders cannot meet minimum academic entrance requirements for career level military or for ‘remediation free’ college. Colorado Early Colleges work to eliminate the need for remediation.
** According to FICO, the size of the average student loan in 2005 was $17,233. By 2012 the average U.S. student loan debt climbed to $27,253–a 58 percent increase in just seven years.