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Early College High School


Early College High Schools (ECHS) are innovative high schools located on or in close proximity to a college campus that allow students least likely to attend college an opportunity to earn a high school diploma and 60 college credit hours. Early College High Schools:

  • Provide dual credit at no cost to students
  • Offer rigorous instruction and accelerated courses
  • Provide academic and social support services to help students succeed
  • Increase college readiness
  • Reduce barriers to college access

ECHS Designation

Under the authority of Texas Education Code (TEC) §29.908(b) and Texas Administrative Code (TAC) §102.1091, the TEA has developed a designation process for Early College High Schools. The designation process ensures that districts and colleges operating ECHS campuses maintain the integrity of the model, which was researched and designed to target and serve students who would not otherwise consider attending college.

The designation process, which has historically occurred in the spring, will be moved to fall in 2014. This new timeline will facilitate a more coherent student recruitment and enrollment process. In addition, the change in the timeline will enable the TEA to finalize plans to refine and update the designation process, including completion of an online application. This work will strengthen ECHS programs moving forward.

Information about the Early College High School Designation for the 2014-2015 school year is provided in the To the Administrator Addressed letter

Laws and Rules



Laura Gaines
Program Coordinator
Texas Education Agency
1701 North Congress Avenue
Austin, Texas 78701-1401
(512) 463-9581

Curriculum Division
(512) 463-9581

Page last modified on 2/4/2014 02:13:32 PM.