In 2011, GenTX SA organized a task force of curricula specialists and educators and challenged them to develop an instructional thread (kindergarten through high school) that helps students prepare for college and careers. GenTX SA identified an opportunity to provide resources for teachers during the transition to the CCRS and STAAR exam and felt the importance of providing teachers with these meaningful tools.
These industry-changing lesson plans are the first of their kind. Each lesson plan will have an accompanying video of excellent teachers using the lesson plan in their classrooms, thus building an innovative dissemination platform for teachers to view and learn from best practices.
Seasons of College
The Seasons of College are a series of monthly events with a focus on the seasonal aspects of college and career-readiness. During these high-energy, high-content activities, Generation TX San Antonio distributes actionable information to students and their families about selecting, enrolling in, paying for and completing college. GenTX SA’s monthly events inspire and inform San Antonio students and work to ensure they are well informed and prepared to enter college. For example, Virtual College Tours are scheduled in community centers throughout San Antonio to help students experience college life in a variety of settings without the barrier of costly travel.
Research has consistently shown that when students know what to expect from college life, their chances of staying and graduating increase exponentially. Generation TX San Antonio has also collaborated with the San Antonio Education Partnership, Greater San Antonio Chamber of Commerce and SA202 to organize Student Aid Saturdays, three months of financial aid events and workshops for students and parents. These events provide confidential guidance from trained volunteers in filing out financial aid forms and assembling the documents necessary for grants, loans and scholarships. Research indicates that FAFSA completion is one of the greatest indicators of college enrollment; according to a 2003-2004 study, 90 percent of students who filled out the FAFSA enrolled in postsecondary education.
Finally, GenTX SA hosts an annual College Signing Day, during which high school seniors are invited to announce their college choices to the community. Modeled after signing events involving star athletes, the event spotlights each and every rising college freshmen with a major party honoring their college choice.
GenTXperts is a partnership between schools and Generation TX San Antonio dedicated to using proven youth development principals to enhance college and career readiness in low-income, typically first generation students. A GenTXpert is defined as a student who embodies the GenTX culture and is committed to fueling the college-going movement in their school. The purpose of campus-based GenTXpert Clubs is to organize, promote and support student leadership.
To this end, student-led GenTXpert Clubs work to create a college-going culture that builds student dreams for success and provides the support necessary to achieve them. Participating GenTXperts are rewarded for taking ownership of their club, preparing them to reach their full potential as San Antonio’s future leaders. Youth are engaged in character building and are taught new advocacy and leadership skills through training in professional media, governance and facilitative leadership.
The authentic nature of a youth-led college movement is powerful and the word is spreading fast as we document the entire process via social media. Most importantly, our GenTXperts have begun to host a series of community wide events that have significantly increased the number of youth, parents and community leaders sharing the college-going movement and removing barriers to success. practices.