Detroit Public Schools students to graduate with a high school diploma and associate’s degree

At a graduation ceremony tonight, seven students from the Detroit Allied Health Middle College Program at Kettering High School Middle College will receive a high school diploma, having also simultaneously received an Associate’s degree from Wayne County Community College.

About the program:

The Detroit Allied Health Middle College Program at Kettering High School Middle College is providing Detroit students a marketplace of secondary school options that accelerate postsecondary opportunities in the field of allied health. This is part of Detroit Public Schools’ mission to have every graduate complete high school with the skills necessary for success.

Since 2007, the Middle College has partnered with the administration of Detroit Public Schools, Wayne County Community College District, and the Detroit Medical Center.

Students receive preparation to meet ever-increasing opportunities in marketable Allied Health occupations and, if successful, receive both a high school diploma and an Associate Degree or two years of transferable college credit from Wayne County Community College District at the end of the 13th year.  Currents students have earned college credits and have participated in personalized discussions with health professionals, job shadowing, and paid summer internships through the Detroit Medical Center.

As of January 2011, approximately 100 students had enrolled in the Middle College Program; 43 now completing their 13th year commitment and seven (7) students graduating with an Associate’s degree tonight from Wayne County Community College. The remaining 36 have received 40 or more transferable college credits.

Through this counselor-driven program current students, who may not have even envisioned themselves attending college after high school, have already earned college credits and have participated in personalized discussions with health professionals, job shadowing, and paid summer internships through the Detroit Medical Center.  Much interest has been displayed in Detroit Allied Health Middle College High School and recruitment for a new 10th grade cohort for next school year has already begun.

“This is an noteworthy opportunity for students to accelerate their postsecondary options in a fast-growing, 21st century career field,” said Cedric J. Thompson, Director of the DPS Office of College and Career Readiness.

The mission of Middle College is to serve young people who are interested in the Allied Health careers and to give experience that will bridge the adjustment gap between high school and a college campus.  The instructional program is rigorous and relevant, and focuses simultaneously on the core academics and the health sciences for students who are academically capable and in need of motivation and/or an alternative learning environment.  Career opportunities within the allied health field are realistic and available for those individuals who excel, Thompson said.

About Detroit Public Schools’ Academic Plan

Under the District’s five-year academic plan, students are seeing a more rigorous academic curriculum at every school. The academic plan includes extended time for reading and mathematics under a common core curriculum; pre-algebra for 7th graders; tutors for pre-kindergartners through the Volunteer Reading Corps; additional language courses; more Advanced Placement courses; and more opportunities for student apprenticeships, internships, shadowing and mentorships.

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