W. Charles Akins ECHS: Making College Accessible!
The Early College High School program at Akins High School provides an opportunity for students to obtain a two-year transferrable college degree while in high school at NO COST to the student or family.
- Students can earn up to 60 FREE college credits that also satisfy the high school requirements (dual credit).
- Students can earn an Associate of Arts degree and complete all the high school requirements by the time they graduate from Akins High School. YES, a high school diploma and an associate's degree!!
- All credits are guaranteed to transfer to any Texas public 4-year university. Private universities and out-of-state colleges will accept many of the credits as well.
- Students attend college classes during the school day at Akins or at the ACC South Campus. Transportation to classes at ACC South Campus is provided.
- Students can access ACC support services, including college advising, career counseling, and free tutoring. Students can use all ACC facilities and participate in ACC events for free.
- Students receive academic support through a full-time ECHS coordinator, AVID classes, tutoring, and study halls. They are encouraged to take other advanced academic classes, such as Pre-AP, AP, and OnRamps, if it fits in their schedules.
- And best of all...there is NO COST to the student or family for tuition, transportation, or textbooks!
The Akins Early College High School program is open to students who meet one or more of the following criteria:
- 1st generation college potential (neither custodial parent has received a 4-year degree)
- Belonging to a population that is under represented in higher education
- Seeking an accelerated or more rigorous academic experience
The program has one main recruitment period, which is during the Spring semester for students seeking to begin the program in the Fall semester of the following academic year. To apply, students must be in the eighth grade at any middle school within or outside of AISD.
Once students have applied, they must take the Texas Success Initiative (TSI) test. Students must meet college readiness in the Reading and Writing portions of this test to be eligible to begin taking college classes. If college ready, students may start college courses right away the Spring semester of their 9th grade year. Students that are not college ready will be provided TSI preparation during the school day.
Application Process and Deadlines
For Fall 2019 program entry
- Application deadline is Saturday, March 30, 2019
- The ECHS application is open to current 8th graders
- Students who do not live in the Akins HS attendance zone will be eligible for a transfer only if they are not slated to attend a high school that already has an ECHS.
- If admitted, students will be required to take the TSI test, and to attend a Summer Bridge Program where they will participate in college readiness activities, college orientation activities, and TSI test preparation if needed. If students meet TSI college readiness scores by the end of the Fall semester, they can begin taking ACC classes in the Spring semester. Parents are also required to attend a parent orientation during the Summer Bridge Program.
- Incoming 9th grade ECHS students must also participate in the AVID program at Akins. AVID provides support to students enrolled in ACC classes by teaching the study and organizational skills needed for college success.
To apply, students must submit the following:
ECHS applications will be available beginning January 1, 2019 through the Akins website (www.akinseagles.org).
- Applications may be downloaded and printed from the website or picked up in the main office at Akins High School. Paper copies of the application should be dropped off with Christine Kesling, College Readiness Counselor, in the main office at Akins High School, or can be mailed to her at: Christine Kesling, Akins HS, 10701 S. 1st Street, Austin, TX 78748. Applications may also be submitted online.
Students will be notified of program status (acceptance or reason for denial) by May 3, 2019.
For questions, contact:
College Readiness Counselor