Please join us on May 19, 2013 at South Shore Harbour Resort as CCISD High School Juniors and teachers take to the runway. To sponsor or purchase tickets to the It’s Our Time to Shine Fashion Show, click here.
Thank you to our sponsors!
Time to Shine Student Model Sponsors:
Andrew Kurth, LLP
Dillard’s – Baybrook
Stephanie and Kevin Stanley
Ron Carter Cadillac Hyundai
Beam of Light Student Model Sponsors:
Southern Bracing Systems – Jill & Dan Reason
Gold Shores Sponsors:
Kim and David Barker
Steve Quimby, State Farm Agency – Houston
Attending a school such as Clear Horizons Early College High School, the expectations to excel are extremely high. Clear Horizons is one of only ten Texas High Schools earning 12 of 12 TEA Gold Performance Acknowledgements, one of only 66 Texas High Schools named Exemplary in 2011, and US News & World Reports ranked Clear Horizons as the 34th Best High School in the state of Texas.
In its early years, Clear Horizons found it difficult to fill a freshman class of 100. Today, the amount of interest and desire is extraordinary, as shown in the surge of applicants over the past three years. In 2011 the school received 184 applications for admission. That number rose to 195 in 2012. In 2013 this number jumped to 258.
In its seventh year of existence, Clear Horizons serves as a flagship model for other early college high schools, serving low-income youth, first-generation college goers, English language learners, students of color, and other young people who are traditionally underrepresented in higher education. In fact, research indicates that if a student receives 20 or more college credit hours while in high school, the likelihood of earning a college degree is much more attainable. Clear Horizons is a unique model where the school is located on a college campus immersing students in the college culture through a partnership with CCISD and San Jacinto College South. Students attend both high school and college classes concurrently, expecting to earn 61 college credit hours to attain their Associate’s degree three weeks before high school graduation. Each student knows what a tremendous opportunity has been bestowed upon them by attending this school, helping them achieve dreams never thought possible. That dream is a college degree, as statements listed below highlight the impact of the program’s success:
“I have been enrolled in the program since freshman year. I was given the same responsibilities as a college freshman at the age of thirteen. Though it was tough, I was determined to take advantage of this once in a lifetime opportunity.
In tenth grade my mom and I were evicted from our apartment and I was forced to stay with friends. I was absent from my mom for weeks. By eleventh grade my mom and I were in a shelter and I was riding public transportation for two hours to and from school. This was the hardest time of my life. I was not only dealing with the burden of not having a home, but I still had obligations at school that I had to take care of. Many adolescents would have left due to a hardship such as this, but I used my troubles as motivation to get an education so that I can later afford to bring my mother and me out of poverty.”
“I was never on board with the idea of attending this school to the point where in my first semester of my freshman year I decided to fail all of my courses. Without the teachers of Clear Horizons and the school itself, I would not be the same person that I am today. Their goal is to see every single student succeed and they have achieved that with me, I am now applying for universities and I know what I am going to do with my future.”
“Despite what many people believe, CHECHS is not a school full of over-privileged genius children. I am probably the perfect counter-example. My father has bipolar disorder, and is chemically dependent on crack cocaine. Just throughout my school career, he has stolen our car three times and wrecked all of them. In fact, the last time he ran off, my mom was in the hospital and he had taken me to school to take my last college final exam. When I got out of my final, he was nowhere to be found. I was stranded at school. We found our car a month later. Needless to say, I was by no means born with a silver spoon in my mouth. Before CHECHS, I was very unsure of whether or not I would ever make it to a community college, let alone graduate with an associate’s degree. I don’t think that without Clear Horizons and the support of the teachers that I would have the drive to go further with my education like I do now.”
The benefits of attending Clear Horizons do not go unnoticed with acceptances from in-state colleges ranging from the University of Houston, University of Texas, and Texas Tech, to out-of- state colleges such as Colorado of the Mines, Louisiana State University, and the University of Hawaii at Mānoa, to the prestigious West Point Military Academy and the University of Texas, San Antonio’s Facilitated Acceptance to Medical Education program (F.A.M.E.). Clear Horizons Early College High School students are competitive and highly sought after candidates in the college admission process.
The strong foundational pillars of the school that set Clear Horizons apart and create a culture of student success include carefully designed advisory curriculum that lays the foundation for College and Career Readiness. The independent study mentorship gives students real world professional experience to help guide them to an intended major path, and setting them up for success upon graduating from Clear Horizons. In addition, the required service learning component provides real world application experiences, relating to the lessons taught in the classroom and enabling the students to create a bond with the small staff at Clear Horizons. These foundational elements combined with immersion in a college going culture continue to take students to new heights. As Texas celebrates early college high school week it is important to note the success students are having in our area and the support that the educational institutions provide to make the program possible.
The Teacher Innovative Grant application deadline has been extended to Sunday, March 31st, at Midnight. Click here to start or complete your grant application.