SECME Selects Teams
To Help Develop Early College High SchoolsWASHINGTON
SECME, a strategic alliance of school systems and engineering universities in 17 states, has identified local teams to help plan and establish eight new “Early College High Schools” across the Southeastern United States.
The planning teams, which come from K-12 and higher education, will work with SECME to start the schools over three years beginning in fall 2003. The goal is to dramatically increase the high school graduation and college attendance rates for the most disadvantaged youth.
The schools will be among 70 across the country that will be established with the help of $40 million from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in Seattle and other philanthropic organizations (see Black Issues, April 4).
SECME received $4.8 million from the Gates Foundation to open the eight schools, which will be located in Alabama, Florida (2 schools), Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, Tennessee and Washington, D.C. The organization will oversee the design and development of schools, which will be housed on or adjacent to a higher education institution. Each higher-education team includes at least one historically Black college and university or Hispanic-serving institution.
Dr. Yvonne B. Freeman, executive director of SECME, says the eight schools will be “models for dynamic change and innovative educational transformation.”
“We intend for them to be beacons and benchmarks on today’s public education landscape. Each will be identified by a subject-matter theme that reflects a cutting-edge area of science and technology development and equates to high-demand career opportunities for graduates,” Freeman says.
SECME, which until 1997 was known as the Southeastern Consortium for Minorities in Engineering, seeks to increase the number of minority students who graduate from high school and go on to study science, math, engineering and technology.
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