Education and Workforce Early College High School Programs
As one of its core values, BAHEP is committed to providing responsible leadership that results in strong employment in the region. BAHEP focuses on regional economic growth by concentrating on retaining, recruiting and expanding quality employment opportunities in support of businesses and their suppliers within the region's five primary industry clusters: aerospace, healthcare, maritime, specialty chemical, and tourism/recreation.
Since its founding in 1976, BAHEP has responded to changing regional dynamics in demographics and education and workforce development, which affect regional success. BAHEP has formed and strengthened strategic alliances within industry and the region's educational institutions to assure that the region's workforce is prepared, available and effective.
As an important aspect of BAHEP’s mission to enhance Bay Area Houston’s overall economic development and quality of life by collaborating to create a world-class education and training community; advocating for education; sharing best-practices; supporting regional economic development; assisting member organizations to achieve their respective goals; and establishing innovative and effective partnerships, BAHEP established the Education and Workforce Development Committee, which includes the leadership in the business community, K-12 education and higher education.
Regional Educational Institutions
Public School Districts K-12
Public Colleges and Universities
College of the Mainland
San Jacinto College
Texas A&M University at Galveston
University of Houston
University of Houston Clear Lake
The University of Texas Medical Branch
Private Colleges and Universities
Independent school districts and institutions of higher education within Bay Area Houston are keenly aware of the need for an educational pipeline to prepare students for highly skilled, and well paying, positions in the exceedingly competitive maritime environment. Read here about maritime education initiatives in the region.
BAHEP’s educational partners are meeting the workforce needs of both today and the future.
Showcase of Programs K-12
Today's students are expected to think critically and solve real-world problems. To prepare tomorrow's workforce, regional educational institutions are offering programs to meet not only the needs of students but also the future needs of industry.
Gulf Coast Workforce Board
From Jobs of the Present to Jobs of the Future: Using Data to Understand What May Be Coming
Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership – Education and Workforce Development Committee
November 21, 2019
What does the Houston metropolitan area’s job market look like today? How does it compare to other comparable metros across the nation? What trends may affect future employment profiles? What implications might those trends have on how we prepare today’s students for the workforce of tomorrow?
Thomas Brown, from Workforce Solutions, addressed these questions and led the discussion about the implications of the Gulf Coast Workforce Board’s report, "2019 Workforce Report Card” at the committee’s monthly meeting.
Brown first presented Houston’s current employment picture – a declining unemployment rate; increasing number of jobs; and a snapshot of the how the job market is faring across various industry sectors. He paid particular attention to how the services sector was increasing across the region. In addition, he indicated that the post-recession and post-Harvey impacts had stabilized across the economy.
From discussing where we are to where we might be going, Brown based his presentation on the "2019 Workforce Report Card,” available at www.wrksolutions.com. He compared the Houston metro area to eight other comparable regions, noting that our area had lost ground to these other areas over the past five years. One area of particular interest to the committee was the data indicating that the region’s educational achievement and investment lagged behind the other regions.
From the consideration of this broad range of comparative data to a more specific consideration of the implications of the data, Brown transitioned to a discussion of what it will take to make the region more competitive.
Brown listed three factors as themes for the committee to consider:
a. Implementing necessary changes to public education to support a future-ready workforce;
b. Continuing industrial diversification that builds on existing business strengths; and
c. Implementing employer-driven talent development to equip businesses and workers to adapt to a fast-changing work environment.
From here, Brown pivoted to a more in-depth look at the role of automation and artificial intelligence (AAI) that may change the workforce. In terms of probabilities, jobs least likely to be replaced by these technologies are those that are the most creative, the most social, and the most physically dexterous. Brown was careful to point out that he was referencing changes in the job market, not numbers of jobs, job losses, or job increases. The economy is evolving, and so are the jobs that the economy creates.
Nevertheless, a predictive model developed in the United Kingdom indicated that job categories could be ranked by the likelihood that those jobs would be replaced by AAI. Not surprisingly, overall the more education required for a job, the less likely AAI would replace it, although the job itself might well be modified. That said, 84% of jobs in the local market will be affected by AAI, one way or another.
In the discussion that followed Brown’s presentation (see slides), a number of issues were emphasized:
a. Across industries, what once were referred to as ‘soft-skills’ were consistently mentioned as enduring and important. However, the term ’soft-skills’ is dated and inaccurate. More appropriately, we ought to discuss ‘employability skills and behaviors.’ These skills include, but are not limited to, literacy, numeracy, working collaboratively, problem solving, and arriving on the job drug-free, on-time, and able to function effectively on the job.
b. In the same vein, the term ‘life-long-learning’ might also be modified to life-long employability. We know people will need to maintain their relevance in the market and will need to upgrade/update their skills over time. In this regard, people are not just learning, but also applying, their talents.
c. ISDs and higher education are aware of the issues and adjusting their programs accordingly.
d. The impact of AAI in Bay Area Houston may vary widely from industry to industry; so, the need to maintain strong education-industry links is more important than ever.
e. Career and technical education programs are working.
View the 2019 Workforce Report Card below in a flip book!
Just click on the open box in the lower right hand corner to view the book on fullscreen, OR read it HERE as a PDF instead.
BAHEP Moderates Panel on Early College High School Programs in Support of Region's Workforce Development Needs
During its Oct. 24, 2019, meeting, area colleges and school districts presented a status report on the region’s Early College High Schools (ECHSs) to the members of the Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership’s Education and Workforce Development Committee.
The Texas Education Agency defines an ECHS as an innovative high school that allows students who are the least likely to attend college an opportunity to earn a high school diploma and 60 college credit hours. TEA’s guideline specifies that 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; and reduce barriers to college access.
Under the authority of Texas Education Code (TEC) §29.908(b) and Texas Administrative Code (TAC) §102.1091, TEA 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 might not otherwise attend college. Texas is home to almost 200 designated Early College High Schools.
BAHEP hosts ECHS panel discussion
A panel comprised of representatives from Clear Creek ISD, Dickinson ISD, Pasadena ISD, and La Porte ISD described the schools’ respective programs, all different and all customized to address district-specific considerations. In addition, representatives from San Jacinto College District (SJCD) and College of the Mainland (COM), the institutions awarding college credit, commented on the programs’ work from their vantage points.
Panelists included Jennifer Broddle and Scott Bowen, Board of Trustees, Clear Creek ISD; Marshall Poncѐ, principal, Clear Horizons ECHS, Clear Creek ISD; Dr. Jennifer Boushley, coordinator for ECHS, Pasadena ISD; Dr. Karen Hickman, deputy superintendent, Academic Achievement, Pasadena ISD; Carla Voelkel, superintendent, Dickinson ISD; and Dr. Carlin Grammer, principal, La Porte High School. Also participating in the discussion were Pamela Campbell, associate vice chancellor, Student Success Partnerships, SJCD; and Dr. Jerry Fliger, vice president of Instruction, COM.
Panel provides updates on programs
San Jacinto College District works with eight ECHSs with over 6,000 dual credit students. As of October 2019, there are 3,540 students in early college programs with 3,144 in the eight ECHSs. When the program originally began, many of the students came from a deep inner city, low socioeconomic, high Hispanic population serving area. Pam Campbell offered, "Kids in those initial classes had no thought at all about being able to go to college. Many of them upped their game to be part of the program.”
The College of the Mainland serves nine different high schools and has an ECHS program on the COM campus with over 300 students. Any of the high schools in COM’s service district can participate. Students at private schools and those being home schooled can participate in the program, as well. The Collegiate High School is at capacity right now, according to Dr. Jerry Fliger. "We are waiting for new buildings to open,” he said.
Carla Voelkel reported that Dickinson ISD partners with COM; 79 students attend the Collegiate High School on the COM campus.
La Porte partners with SJCD through its Accelerated College Education (ACE) program. La Porte pays 100% of the tuition and books and provides transportation to SJCD, which is nearby. Campbell noted that SJCD waives 75% of the tuition.
Students take college classes in the summer just after their sophomore year of high school. They spend mornings taking courses at the college during their junior and senior years and then return to the LPHS campus in the afternoon. Through the program, students who meet expectations receive both high school and college credit for the courses they take at San Jacinto College Central. There are currently 104 students in the ACE program. Dr. Grammer explained that students actually have to be on the advanced track in junior high to get into the program; so, La Porte ISD starts talking to the students about ACE in the sixth grade.
Each of Pasadena ISD’s five high schools has an ECHS program. Freshmen and sophomores take their college classes on the comprehensive high school campus, and juniors and seniors take classes at San Jacinto College. There are 1,900 students in the program now.
Dr. Hickman said, "The partnership with San Jac has gotten stronger and stronger. Ninety-five percent or better of the students in the program have four-year college plans, have been accepted by a college, and are ready to go. We’re trying to get the stats on the students who have persisted and completed a four-year school. As a district and across the state, it’s an ugly number. For those students who continue on to a four-year college, only about 25 percent get their bachelors. Many times it’s not an academic problem. It’s the persistence, and the habits, and the organization.”
This is the 13th year since Clear Horizons was formed within Clear Creek ISD, and there are 105 students in the program this year. Students attend classes full time on a college campus. Dr. Boushley said, "Imagine putting an eighth grader on a college campus. These students not only hold their own, they can fly.” She continued, "CCISD recruits students from across the community, identifying students to bring forward who come from low income households, those who are first generation college students, minority students, those who come from families who have been historically underrepresented in higher education. Students must reside within a 110-mile radius of CCISD.”
CTE vital to workforce development in Bay Area Houston region
Dr. Grammer from La Porte commented on Career and Technical Education (CTE). He said, "We’re also working to meet the needs of those students who are more CTE related. We’re having early discussions amongst ourselves and San Jac regarding an associate’s degree being the terminal degree. We’re only about two miles from San Jac’s Maritime Center. We’re working with the college to start a program where our students will go to the Maritime Center, get those courses, and finish up at San Jac the year after.” He pointed out that there are some really lucrative positions in the maritime industry.
The panel then discussed the importance of CTE to the industries in the region as their workforce is aging. It was noted that Galena Park has a career and technical ECHS, and Dr. Grammer said that La Porte wants to develop a dual credit or ACE program for its CTE students in the years to come. He concluded, "La Porte is surrounded by industry, and there is a huge need for young people to work in those jobs. It’s a great service to the students and to the economy.” SJCD’s Campbell added, "Students are graduating with an AAS degree, an associate’s of Applied Science. They have the technical training in CTE areas overlaid with 15-18 hours of academic credit.”
(BAHEP sincerely appreciates the College of the Mainland and San Jacinto College for providing the photos used here.)
Industry Workforce Report
In 2018, BAHEP's Education and Workforce Development Committee hosted leaders from regional industry sectors to participate in informal panel discussions on workforce dynamics and trends. The panelists discussed the skills needed by today's and tomorrow's workers in each industry sector and how regional educational institutions can better prepare young people to compete and excel in their particular industry. The following report highlights the results of the panel discussions.