The MCNC Middle/Early College Research Partnership (2002- present)
Since 2002, NCREST has served as a research partner of the 25-year old Middle College National Consortium (MCNC), a network of high schools across the nation, situated on community college campuses. NCREST has documented the design, development, and operation of the Consortium’s Early College High School Initiative to provide information that is used to strengthen its design and implementation. The NCREST Early College Team’s commitment-- and privilege-- has been to support MCNC’s efforts to develop strong, effective Middle-Early College High Schools. NCREST also regularly provides technical assistance workshops that help member schools to understand and reflect on the data collected on their students’ experiences and outcomes.
About the partner organization
The MCNC schools are designed to provide under-performing youth with access to college. Their member Middle College-Early College High Schools (MC-ECs) blur the border between high school and college to create “blended institutions” offering students a chance to begin college work while still in high school. Taking a mixture of high school and college courses, students strive to earn a high school diploma and substantial numbers of college credits. Some students even earn an associate’s degree on graduation from high school. Students are intensively supported and guided as they experience themselves as successful college-level learners. This association supports MC-EC schools in implementing six design principles that lay the foundation for an excellent education leading to postsecondary success. The schools are committed to working with students who have not traditionally thought of themselves as “college material,” and involve families and communities in the process.
Over the years, NCREST has engaged in many different projects in partnership with the MCNC. For example, NCREST has:
Barnett, E.A., Bucceri, K., Hindo, C., Kim, J. (2013). Ten key decisions in creating early colleges: Design options based on research. New York: NCREST, Teachers College, Columbia University.