ECHS Academy & Application Information


ECHS Academy students with the ACC Riverbat Mascot during our Spring 2020 Honor Roll Assembly.
Current 8th graders, scroll down to the bottom of this page for the 2020-2021 ECHS Academy application & Information about signing up for a TSI Test (via online).

ECHS Associate Principal- Mr. Manuel Garcia, (512) 841-9815

ECHS Coordinator- Mr. Kevin Edwards, (512) 841-9979

ECHS Counselor- Ms. Christine Kesling, (512) 841-9912


W. Charles Akins ECHS: Making College Accessible!

The Early College High School program at Akins High School was established in the 2019-2020 school as the school's 7th Academy (school within a school model).  It provides an opportunity for students to obtain a two-year transferable college degree while in high school at NO COST to the student or family.  


Important Deadlines for 2020-2021 

Applications Opens

December 2, 2019

Application Submission UPDATED DEADLINE: 

Monday, June 15, 2020

Decision Letters Begin to be Mailed


Acceptance Forms Priority Deadline



ECHS Program


  • 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! It is a $20,000 investment!




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 underrepresented 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.


TSI Testing


Texas Success Initiative (TSI) is a state-required assessment test to determine college-readiness in reading, writing, and math. All first-time college students must take the TSI test before enrolling in classes unless you are exempt or complete. Per the current COVID-19 closure of physical campuses, TSI testing will be done remotely. Click here to sign up: TSI Remote Testing.


Application Process and Deadlines


Fall 2020 program entry: The application deadline has been extended to Monday, June 15, 2020


  • 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, ALL students interested in the ECHS Academy program must submit the following:


ECHS Application

ECHS Recommendation Forms


Three Programs: See below to learn more about the three programs in the ECHSA for the 2020-2021 school year. Students interested in the Teaching or Real Estate ECHSA programs must complete the following applications. 


Students interested in attending must complete an enrollment self-interest form, essays, and complete (2) letters of recommendation. Interest and recommendation forms may be downloaded and printed from the website or submitted digitally. Students will be notified of program status (acceptance or reason for denial) by PENDING Board, District, and School-wide decisions. Please wait for further information as our campus adjusts to the Distance Learning caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

For questions, contact:

Kevin Edwards

ECHS Coordinator 

(512) 841-9979


The College-Level Examination Program (CLEP) provides students of any age with the opportunity to demonstrate college-level achievement through a program of exams in undergraduate college courses.
CLEP Spanish
Help prepare to take the College-Level Examination Program's (CLEP) Spanish Language exam.
CLEP College Math
Help prepare to take the College-Level Examination Program's (CLEP) College Math exam.
TSI Study materials
The links below will take you through our online TSI test review.