Benchmark 2: Target Population
Purpose of Target Population
The T-STEM academy shall serve, or include plans to scale up to serve, students in grades 6-12 or 9-12, and shall target and enroll students who are at risk of dropping out of school as defined by the Public Education Information Management System (PEIMS) and who might not otherwise go to college.
All T-STEM academies must implement and meet the following requirements:
- The T-STEM recruitment and enrollment processes shall identify, recruit, and enroll the subpopulations of at-risk students (as defined by PEIMS), including, but not limited to, students who are of limited English proficiency, students with disabilities, or students who have failed a state administered assessment. Enrollment decisions shall not be based on state assessment scores, discipline history, teacher recommendation, parent or student essays, minimum grade point average (GPA), or other criteria that create barriers for student enrollment
- The T-STEM shall identify, recruit, and enroll subpopulations (in addition to those who are at risk as defined by PEIMS) that are historically underrepresented in college courses
- The T-STEM academy shall clearly document recruitment and enrollment policies and practices; refining and improving them annually based on data reviews
- Recruitment and enrollment processes (including marketing and recruitment plans, materials, and timelines) shall include input from key stakeholders (e.g., parents and community members; postsecondary partners); target student populations as described in 1 and 2 above; and include regular activities to educate students, counselors, principals, parents, and school board and community members
- If the T-STEM academy has more applicants than available space, they shall use either a performance-blind, open-access lottery system for admissions that encourages and considers applications from all students (all students have an equal opportunity for acceptance, regardless of background or academic performance) or a weighted lottery that favors students who are at-risk or who are part of the targeted subpopulations for the T-STEM
- All products shall be published on the T-STEM academy website and be made available to the Texas Education Agency (TEA) upon request.
- All products shall be maintained in accordance with local retention policy.
- Written admission policy and enrollment application
- Written recruitment plan including a timeline of recruitment and enrollment events, and recruitment materials for distribution at feeder schools and other appropriate locations in the community
- Brochures and marketing in Spanish, English, and/or other relevant language(s)
- Written communication plan for targeting identified audiences, parents, community members, school board, higher education personnel, etc.