Spring Independent School District (ISD) and Lone Star College-North Harris (LSC-NH) have a long standing partnership for the advancement of students’ educational endeavors and development. Dual Credit classes have been offered to juniors and seniors at Spring ISD high school campuses for sixteen years. It was a natural fit for Spring ISD and Lone Star College-North Harris to partner in the early college because of the relationship with numerous other high school program initiatives. The precursor to the Early College Academy at Southridge was the successful Accelerated College Program (ACP) whereby Spring ISD juniors and seniors were bused to LSC-NH each morning to take three (3) college classes for either dual credit and/or college credit only. The ACP students were able to earn college hours at LSC-NH as well as on their respective high school campuses which aided the students in accelerating their postsecondary education prior to high school graduation.
Lone Star College-Southridge was chosen as the site of the early college program because the location is conducive to the development of a college culture and available for the initial start-up. The executive leadership of both Spring ISD and Lone Star College-North Harris visualized a unique collaboration where the local school district provided the land so that the college could create a center for both early college students and the community to pursue higher education. The conception and creation of the Early College Academy at Southridge spanned two years of determination, dedication, and desire by Spring ISD and Lone Star College-North Harris working side-by-side to make the dream a reality. The Early College Academy at Southridge allows students to make a smooth transition into college course work while being exposed to a college setting and culture thus providing the opportunity for all students at the Early College Academy at Southridge to graduate with a distinguished high school diploma and an Associate of Arts Degree in four years.