We are developing a community of critical thinkers: Our students are learning today so they lead tomorrow.
The State of Florida allows for an 18-credit or 24-credit standard diploma. Each pathway is equally as beneficial, but each helps students take different post-secondary academic and career paths. All students at our school benefit from the mentorship of a Graduation Coach. This education professional ensures that every senior has met her/his requirements for graduation. Soon-to-be graduates must also demonstrate to the coach a post-secondary plan of action. This could include being hired into a career, recruitment into a military branch, acceptance to a four-year degree program, or continued career and technical education. Our school also assists students with special needs to reach their full potential and earn a Florida-approved diploma.
We are excited to offer three distinct Career Academies in year one at San Jose Early College at Cecil: The Academy of Aviation, the Academy of Financial Technology and the Academy of Information Technology. An academy is a grouping of students within the whole school with a career-focused theme. Students may graduate with an 18-credit standard Florida diploma once they complete at least 4 credits of English, 4 credits of math, 3 credits of science and 3 credits of social studies, in addition to 4 credits of work-based learning and industry certifications. Students who fully complete a Career Academy and receive a high school diploma from San Jose Early College at Cecil will hold the qualifications necessary to be hired in one of many related careers. Students may also choose to continue their education beyond high school to receive advanced degrees and additional industry certifications. Our school will follow the 10 National Standards of Practice for all academies.
Our school will be co-located with Florida State College of Jacksonville on two campuses: Kent Campus (off Roosevelt Blvd.) and Cecil Center Campus (off Normandy Road). During year one, most of our operations and classes will take place at the Kent Campus building; however, in year two, we expect to break ground on a brand new high school building that will be co-located with FSCJ Cecil Center. This physical arrangement will make it more convenient for our juniors and seniors to take dual enrollment courses that contribute to achieving both high school and college diplomas at the same time.
If you have not visited the Cecil Commerce Center in recent years, you might have missed some of the most exciting economic growth going on in Northeast Florida! The Cecil Commerce Center is home to companies that specialize in logistics and high-tech innovation. A few examples include Amazon, Wayfield, Boeing, Flight Star, Saft America, the Jacksonville Jetport, Northrup Grunman and multiple branches of the U.S. military. Students will be learning surrounded by this high level of innovation. They will quickly be able to see how what they are learning in the classroom applies to real-world problem solving and careers.
Students who are enrolled in career and technical education (CTE) programs complete coursework with a certified teacher or an industry expert. Students are assessed by an independent, third-party certifying entity using previously determined standards for knowledge and skills required in that industry. For example, at our Cecil campus, our aviation students will receive the certifications necessary to work on a ground crew for an airfield. This is also the first level of certifications needed to advance in aviation as a pilot, a navigator or to fly drones. Although industry certifications are challenging to achieve, many can be earned while a student attends high school.
Students enrolled in Career Academies will be able to work at a paid internship within their chosen fields while earning high school credits for graduation. This typically takes place during the junior and senior school years. The Florida Department of Education dictates the terms of student employment; therefore, you can be assured your adolescent is being treated fairly while gaining experience that will propel her/his career beyond graduation.
At the San Jose Schools, our team is experienced at providing a world-class college preparatory education. Think of it like a private school experience without the tuition costs. All charter schools in Florida are publicly funded and are free to attend. San Jose Early College at Cecil offers Early College, dual enrollment courses with Florida State College of Jacksonville or a distance learning college, and Advanced Placement and Honors courses. Students can slow down or speed up their pace of completion because of our Blended Learning educational model. Students also have constant contact with a graduation coach and an experienced Student Services Department to aid with items such as advanced testing requirements, the college application process and financial aid.
Test preparation is provided regularly on campus for the SAT, ACT and Advanced Placement (AP) exams. Doing well on national exams can greatly increase students’ choices in post-secondary education. Doing well can also improve eligibility for grants, which is money that does not have to be paid back to a university. Our students at San Jose Early College at Cecil will have convenient and free/low-cost access to all testing, whether for college entry exams, FSAs (state exams) or industry certifications.
The AP Capstone Diploma is an addition to the standard Florida high school diploma (24 credits) that is based on completion of two AP courses (each lasting one year long): AP Seminar and AP Research. Rather than teaching subject-specific content, these courses develop students’ skills in research, analysis, evidence-based arguments, collaboration, writing and presenting. Students also must earn a 3 or higher on four additional AP exams. This diploma program, developed by the College Board, has been a key “secret to success” for college prep at our first Jacksonville high school campus, San Jose Prep.
Our students will have the option to take dual enrollment courses with Florida State College of Jacksonville or a distance learning college. College credits taken in high school are free of charge to the student and the student’s family. Many universities are willing to transfer those credits, which lessens the time and finances needed to earn a post-secondary degree. At San Jose Early College at Cecil, we go one step further: Our students will be able to earn an Associate of Arts degree while achieving their high school diploma. This immediately helps young people become more employable at 18 years of age.
Blended Learning means that we are implementing the most successful in-person instructional strategies along with cutting-edge digital tools and up-to-date, state-approved content to give your child a high quality academic experience. In-person instruction ensures that your child does not get lost in the classroom. Digital tools allow you to monitor your young person’s progress from home. Students also have the ability to control their speed, which means they can take more or less time, as needed, to learn content and skills. Our core curriculum comes to us via Edgenuity, which is research-based and approved by the State of Florida. Our teachers supplement with additional resources to ensure engaged learning and critical thinking are happening in every classroom.
The FSCJ Kent campus and Cecil Center campus are both fully accessible via public transportation in Jacksonville. Students will be able to be dropped off by parents, drive themselves or take the bus to and from school. Families may request a free bus pass from the school office, based on an agreement our charter schools have with the Jacksonville Transit Authority, for convenient access to the city’s bus system.