Alameda Science and Technology Institute: AUSD’s Early College High School Program A Presentation to the Alameda Board of Education 22 April 2008 Scientia potentia est. Knowledge is power.
What is ASTI? Alameda Science and Technology Institute (ASTI) is an Early College High School (ECHS) providing a rigorous college preparatory curriculum preparing students to then enroll in full-time college courses in grades 11 and 12 with additional ASTI support. ASTI students benefit from a small school setting co-located on the College of Alameda campus. ASTI is a partnership between College of Alameda and Alameda Unified School District. Adhering to national ECHS Core Principles, ASTI aims to serve students who have been historically under-represented in post-secondary attainment.
The ASTI Course of Study The ASTI Course of Study was created to enable students to achieve two years of transfer college credits while simultaneously satisfying AUSD high school graduation requirements. ASTI has also established a system whereby its Juniors and Seniors receive additional supports during the school day to help with college work. Thus, these ASTI students bring ADA to AUSD and also FTE (Full-Time Enrollment) funding to COA, meanwhile adhering to CDE state policy supporting Early and Middle College programs.
ASTI Achievements to Date ASTI is a “school of choice” and option for families who want an accelerated ECHS academic program. Almost all ASTI courses earned UC “a-g” course approval. Moreover, ASTI is now a candidate for WASC accreditation. Because all ASTI Juniors and Seniors are also full-time college students at College of Alameda, ASTI has also helped COA meet its enrollment goals while increasing AUSD’s college attendance rate simultaneously. ASTI will graduate its first Senior class this year in June. Most of these students will attend four-year colleges, and the majority of ASTI seniors will have earned as much as two years of transferable college credit to ease college transition in terms of readiness, time and money.
ASTI Senior Achievements 100% of our ASTI Seniors are college-going… and while still in high school! 100% will continue on. Every ASTI Senior will have earned anywhere between 30 and 95 college units, with ASTI Seniors averaging 63 COA units per student. These are not just easy college classes but instead are actually College of Alameda “IGETC” classes required for four-year university transfer. 18 out of 28 graduating ASTI Seniors will attend four-year universities next year; 10 will continue on at community colleges before transferring on.
How ASTI Fits AUSD Goals AUSD has espoused very specific student achievement goals with regard to eliminating the achievement gap that is currently evidenced in AUSD and most other K-12 districts. ASTI is a minority-majority school, representing its aim to meet ECHS Core Principles that outline explicit goals of enrolling students of color, first-time college goers and students of low socio-economic status. As an Early College High School, ASTI aims to consciously address and reverse the predictability of racial and SES academic achievement and moreover college attainment. Thus, ASTI and AUSD goals are shown to cohere and align.
The Strength of a Small School ASTI benefits from being a small autonomous ECHS school located on the College of Alameda campus. ASTI’s “distributed leadership” model allows teachers to help make and implement ECHS operational decisions. ASTI teacher Emily Ramos has now completed her Administrative Services Credential coursework. ASTI teacher Jennifer Ahn has now completed her coursework for college advising at UC Berkeley. ASTI and its staff work very well together and have evidenced leadership for this successful ECHS.