Forsyth Tech has always been at the forefront of educational innovation, and nowhere is that more evident than in two high school programs available through the college: Early College of Forsyth (ECF) and Stokes Early College (SEC).
ECF and SEC are joint partnerships between the WS/Forsyth County and Stokes County school systems, which administer the programs, and Forsyth Tech, which provides the facilities, programming and instructors.
Early College targets motivated first-generation college-goers and underserved populations to provide them with affordable, high-quality, cutting-edge educational opportunities. ECF and SEC are Cooperative Innovative High Schools that receive funding from the state. Qualified students can earn a high school diploma as well as an associate’s degree with tuition and books provided free of charge. Those who earn an associate’s degree can enter a four-year college as a junior having completed their first two years tuition-free.
“ECF and SEC have become models of excellence for the entire state of North Carolina,” says Dr. Susan Phelps, Forsyth Tech’s dean of Educational Partnerships.
“We’re succeeding because we invigorate our teachers through innovative professional development instruction, use a selective student admissions process, carefully choose the teachers and closely monitor student progress on an individual basis,” she adds.
It’s clear this formula is working. In 2014, ECF was named one of America’s top high schools by Newsweek, which ranked ECF 365 out of the more than 14,000 high schools considered, placing it in the top 2.6 percent.