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Haverhill High’s Early College Program Triples in Size

Submitted by on December 12, 2013 – 3:53 pm
Haverhill High Schools Early College Program Triples in Size in One Year

Haverhill High School

Haverhill High School’s Early College Program, a partnership with Northern Essex Community College, has more than tripled in size since it was started last fall.

Students in the program take college courses at the high school taught by Northern Essex faculty, and they earn honors level high school credit and college credit.

The program started with 19 students and there are currently 73 students: 43 sophomores, 21 juniors, and nine seniors.

“This program is a terrific opportunity for our students, and we’re thrilled with the initial results,” said Stacey O’Brien, Haverhill High School guidance counselor and Early College Program coordinator. “Thanks to the rigorous, college-level curriculum; students in the Early College Program will be well prepared to succeed in college when they graduate from Haverhill High School.”

Early College Programs are designed to raise college readiness skills and college completion rates, according to Lori Weir, Northern Essex’s director of PK-12 partnerships. “We want to raise the bar for students who might not have college on their radar. The hope is that students who participate in the program will graduate from high school better prepared for college and will be more likely to attend college and graduate on time.”

The Early College Program targets student in the middle of the pack academically. Students interested in the program are assessed for reading and writing. If they don’t assess into college level courses, they are encouraged to take a college writing course which will help them develop their skills.

Sophomores start the program taking three college courses—US History 1, American Literature 1, and College Success Seminar, which focuses on how to be a self-directed student and how to read and write at the college level. Students in the program will continue to take courses for college credit throughout high school and will graduate from high school with up to 27 credits which is almost a full year of college. The credits earned from Northern Essex are transferable to other colleges and universities.

“There’s lots of support in this program,” said O’Brien. “The faculty is wonderful, and the students have become a family: they take care of one another.”

Haverhill’s Early College Program is modeled after a successful program which was launched at Amesbury High School in the fall of 2009.
Parents and students interested in learning more about Haverhill High School’s Early College Program, can contact O’Brien at 978 374-5700, ext. 1127, or

For more information on NECC’s K-12 partnerships, contact Lori Weir, NECC’s director of K-12 partnerships, 978 556-3943 or