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Benchmark 4: Academic Infrastructure

Purpose of Academic Infrastructure

The Pathways in Technology Early College High School (P-TECH) must provide a rigorous course of study that allows students the opportunity to earn a high school diploma and enable a student to combine high school courses and college-level courses with the goal of earning industry-based certifications, certificates, and/or an associate degree and engage in appropriate work-based learning at every grade level. 

Design Elements

  1. Regional Need

    The P-TECH shall work with the local workforce development board, local chamber of commerce, and/or local workforce industry representatives to identify and maintain a list of high-demand occupations. 

    The P-TECH shall establish one or more career pathways that include industry relevant classes, are informed by the identified regional needs, and prepare students for high-wage, high-demand, high-skills career fields. The P-TECH shall have plans for sequencing additional courses for students in the career pathway.  
  2. Postsecondary Opportunities

    The P-TECH program must provide a rigorous course of study that allows students the opportunity to earn a high school diploma and enables a student to combine high school courses and college-level courses with the goal of earning industry-based certifications, certificates, or an associate degree, and engage in appropriate work-based learning at every grade level.
  3. Course Sequence

    The P-TECH shall offer a course of study that provides a detailed and relevant course sequence to the postsecondary opportunities aligned to the high school and college courses provided to the P-TECH students. This crosswalk must follow the courses and fields of study listed in the THECB Lower Division Academic Course Guide Manual (ACGM) and/or the Workforce Education Course Manual (WECM).
  4. Course Offerings

    The P-TECH shall provide a variety of opportunities for students to earn college credit (e.g., a portfolio approach may include dual credit, Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate (IB), OnRamps, CLEP assessments, and local articulation agreements for specific courses in partnership with a local college) with applicability of college credits in mind.  
  5. Delivery of Courses

    The campus may implement multiple dual enrollment delivery models, including but not limited to the following:
    1. College courses taught on the college campus by college faculty

    2. College courses taught on the high school campus by college faculty

    3. College courses taught on the high school campus by high school educators who meet faculty requirements

    4. College courses taught virtually, via distance/online/blended learning

  6. Academic Performance in High School

    The P-TECH shall implement a plan for End-of-Course (EOC) assessment success, including academic preparation classes for accepted students and academic interventions for students who do not pass EOC assessments. 

  7. College Readiness

    The P-TECH shall provide a TSI assessment to accepted students as early as incoming 9th graders. This assessment may not be used as a prerequisite for admissions to the P-TECH. 

    1. The P-TECH shall publish on its website the dates, times, and location(s) for TSIA administration

    2. The P-TECH shall provide assessment fee waivers for all administrations of the TSIA test

    3. The P-TECH shall implement a plan for TSIA success, including academic preparation classes for accepted students and shall provide academic interventions (e.g., tutorials, workshops, testing strategies, accelerated instruction) for students who do not pass the TSI before retesting

    4. The P-TECH shall review TSIA testing data, particularly the number/percentage of students who have currently passed each section of the TSI assessment to prescribe accelerated instruction to support students

    5. The P-TECH shall explore alternative measures for students to meet college readiness standards 

  8. Student Data Tracking

    The P-TECH shall biannually implement structured data review processes to do the following:

    1. Identify student strengths and areas of growth and develop individual instructional support plans

    2. Provide an assessment for measuring student progress to ensure students are on track to meet the outcomes-based measures

    3. Provide an opportunity for the IHE to provide feedback on the value of the P-TECH program

    4. Provide an opportunity for the business/industry partner(s) to provide feedback on the value of the P-TECH program

  9. Student Persistence

    The P-TECH shall create a plan for students off-track for success in the P-TECH program. Support systems shall include infrastructure, resources, and personnel to enable every possibility to retain the student in the P-TECH program and promote program completion. 

  10. Student Pathway Support

    The P-TECH shall develop a plan to support direct-to-college student enrollment following high school graduation and a strategy to foster long-term workforce readiness.  




  • Documentation detailing courses of study examples that outline student pathways from high school to associate degrees, certificates, or industry-based certifications and beyond
  • Current dated regional high-demand occupation list



  • Crosswalk aligning high school and college courses, grades 9 through 12, which enables a student to earn an associate degree or up to 60 college credit hours toward a baccalaureate degree 
  • Master schedules



  • Calendar of scheduled TSIA test administration dates, sign-up process, and intervention expectations 
  • Aggregate reports of TSIA exam performance 
  • Testing calendar and schedule for SAT, ACT, or other college readiness assessments