West Allegheny has been named a ‘Lighthouse’ district by AASA, The School Superintendents Association, in partnership with the Successful Practices Network within the category of Future Ready Learners: Differentiated Targeted Supports and Focus on Removing Barriers. As one of only 13 districts nationwide to earn an excellence distinction, it recognizes West Allegheny’s Early College In High School Academy (ECIHSA) as a model of positive change for other districts.
The vision of West Allegheny School District is to ensure that every student is college and career ready with a viable post-secondary plan upon graduation. Through West Allegheny's hallmark ECIHSA program, the district has established strategic partnerships with regional institutions of higher education to allow students to gain a jump start on their post-secondary plans. By offering college level courses while still in high school, students have the unique opportunity to earn certificates, associate degrees, and credits toward bachelor's degrees by the time they graduate from West Allegheny. Offering both concurrent and dual enrollment, this access provides dramatically discounted tuition costs for families while acquiring up to two years' worth of college courses.
“As a district, we are incredibly proud to receive this designation,” said Dr. Jerri Lynn Lippert, West Allegheny School District Superintendent; “it recognizes the importance of removing barriers for students while providing unparalleled opportunities to earn college credits while completing credits toward their high school diploma. To serve as a beacon for other districts to carry this vital work forward is both incredibly rewarding and humbling. This would not be possible without an amazing team of K-12 administrators, teachers and paraprofessionals who have embraced this vision to ensure our students are academically prepared to access the rigorous coursework offered through ECIHSA."
“Our ‘Lighthouse’ systems are serving as thought-leader practitioners that are implementing bold, actionable steps on behalf of the broader education community to learn from and learn with as they have taken on the challenge of Learning 2025,” said Daniel A. Domenech, executive director, AASA. “As we emerge from the pandemic, it is critical to invoke future-focused best practices for the well-being, self-sufficiency and success of our young learners. I congratulate these districts, as well as all of the school districts associated with the Learning 2025 Network.”
District and school leaders will be participating in both regional and national summits, co-hosted by AASA and SPN, which will bring together leadership, faculty, boards and staff from across the country to highlight the work of building future-focused capacity demonstrated by ‘Lighthouse’ districts.