A high school with woodworking programs - part of a magnet school centered on architecture, construction and engineering - is now operating in Chicago.
The program allows students in grades 9-12 an opportunity to get a head start on careers in these professional fields.
Founded in 2004, ACE Technical Charter School pairs college-preparatory coursework with construction-trades instruction from industry professionals, creating an academic program in which students can apply their knowledge and develop valuable job skills.
While studying at ACE, students participate in a curriculum that includes math, history, and English, along with subjects like cabinetmaking and manual drafting.
In their sophomore year, students decide to concentrate on architecture, construction, or engineering. They then go on to take at least one course per year in their concentration. Senior students have the opportunity to work in internships, which often lead to careers.
“Every year ACE graduates earn sought-after places in apprenticeship and pre-apprenticeship programs,” explains Marvin Talley, principal of ACE Technical. “Several of our students have also gone on to own their own businesses.”
ACE Tech does not require any tests for enrollment and students are not asked to pay tuition. They do enforce a strict code of conduct and they ask students to maintain a safe environment, and for parents to communicate with the instructors.
According to Charterscale.org, the graduation rate for ACE Technical Charter School students is 19.4% above the average for Chicago Public School students in general. The college enrollment rate is 64.7% above that average.
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