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Concord High School has been named a Partner School in the launch of the Indiana State Department of Education’s Urban College Acceleration Network (UCAN).

UCAN is a new partnership between urban Indiana schools and has a mission to increase student access to postsecondary courses through the Early College High School Program, and Concord is proud to be selected as an inaugural partner. 

“We know that achievement gaps persist in reading, math, and educational attainment among Indiana’s racially and ethnically diverse, low-income, special education and English language learner students – gaps that were exacerbated by the pandemic,” Dr. Katie Jenner, Indiana Secretary of Education, said in a news release. “I’m thrilled that through the UCAN partnership, many of our urban schools will come together to leverage their collective knowledge and experience to help close these gaps and expand pathway opportunities for every student to succeed.”

UCAN connects established urban Early College High Schools and urban schools that are seeking to become Early College High Schools. The model establishes the Early College High Schools as mentors for their partner schools, providing the partner schools with guidance and support as they work to accelerate their path toward becoming an Early College High School. Through UCAN, partner schools will have access to coaching and support for Early College coursework, along with educator professional development at no cost.

This partnership comes at an ideal time as enrollment in Concord’s Early College program cohort continues to increase, said Concord High School Principal Lisa Kendall.

“As we reflect on the educational needs of our students -- especially post-pandemic -- there is a strong desire to provide college wrap-around services so that students are supported at high levels,” Kendall said. “What makes UCAN beneficial are the academic support, perseverance skills, and problem solving skills woven into the academic structures they can provide the students at Concord High School. This partnership comes at the perfect time to benefit the college readiness skills needed in an economic climate heavily focused on industrial and manufacturing institutions.”

This program will be supported with $4.1 million in funding through the third round of the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund, according to the Department of Education. 

Concord High School is one of only two school districts in Elkhart County to be named a partner school. Goshen High School was also selected. 

More information here: