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Early Commitment to College Program   

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The Superintendent shall perform the following responsibilities:

(a) Identify schools as College Opportunity Zones.

(b) Develop the "Save Me a Spot in College" pledge, which shall include the commitments made by the pupil and the major postsecondary and financial aid opportunities provided by the state. The pledge shall contain all of the following assurances:

(1) A pupil who signs the pledge and enrolls in the Early Commitment to College program, in the same manner as all other pupils, shall be eligible to continue his or her postsecondary education at a campus of the California Community Colleges to pursue career technical education or an associate degree, or to prepare for transfer to a four-year college or university, or, if he or she meets the admission requirements and applies for admission, at the University of California or the California State University.

(2) A pupil who signs the pledge and meets all the eligibility requirements of the Cal Grant Program (Article 3 (commencing with Section 69530) of Chapter 2 of Part 42 of Division 5 of Title 3) at the time of application shall be eligible to receive a Cal Grant award.

(3) In a manner that is consistent with Article 1 (commencing with Section 76300) of Chapter 2 of Part 47 of Division 7 of Title 3, a pupil who signs the pledge shall receive, upon enrollment at a community college, a fee waiver under the fee waiver program of the Board of Governors of the California Community Colleges for two or more years of enrollment at a campus of the California Community Colleges, as long as the student is a California resident and continues to show financial need on a completed Free Application for Federal Student Aid.

(c) Consult with the California Community Colleges, the University of California, the California State University, the Student Aid Commission, and independent colleges and universities in developing the pledge, letter, and supporting materials, including a method for participating school districts to notify colleges and universities in their service area that the school district is participating in the program and seeking partnerships with colleges, universities, and others to plan and conduct activities to implement the program.

(d) Determine the form of recognition for pupils who have been certified by his or her school district as having fulfilled the requirements of the pledge pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 54711.

(e) Develop a method by which participating schools shall record and report participation in, and outcome data of, the Early Commitment to College program to the Superintendent pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 54711.

(f) (1) Develop a letter addressed to pupils enrolled in grades 6 to 9, inclusive, and their parents or guardians, and signed by the Superintendent and the superintendent of the school district that describes the major steps to prepare for college, including postsecondary career technical education, and the major postsecondary and financial aid opportunities available to students in California.

(2) Develop a second letter signed by the Superintendent and the superintendent of the school district, to be directed to pupils eligible to sign the pledge pursuant to Section 54711, and their parents or guardians, that details the Early Commitment to College program, including the pledge, in addition to the information in the letter directed to all pupils in grades 6 to 9, inclusive.

(3) Make both letters and information on the Early Commitment to College program available on the Internet Web site of the department and request all school districts to distribute the letters as appropriate through existing means to all pupils and their parents.

(Amended by Stats. 2009, Ch. 140, Sec. 58.)

Reference:

Education Code 54711

Education Code 69530

Education Code 76300