Award Year: 2014

Caldwell Early College High School

2859 Hickory Blvd SW
Hudson, NC, 28638-0000

(828) 759-4636

Mrs. Candis Hagaman, Principal at time of Nomination

Choice School

Caldwell County Schools

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Bell Award Winner


CECHS prepares students for college, career, and life by providing a learning community where students believe educators care about them and expect them to succeed.

Student Demographics
  • Black/African American: 4%
  • White: 85%
  • Hispanic: 7%
  • Asian: 1%
  • Native American: 1%
  • Two or more races: 2%
  • ELL: 8%
  • Economically Disadvantaged: %
Students participate in purposeful team-building, collaboration, and problem solving.

Students participate in purposeful team-building, collaboration, and problem solving.

Caldwell Early College High School (CECHS), an innovative, small learning community, was created in 2006 through a partnership between Caldwell County Schools and Caldwell Community College & Technical Institute (CCC&TI). Its five-year program, located on the CCC&TI campus, contains 393 students who take high school and college courses beginning in 9th grade. A pervasive college-going culture is designed to propel students toward completion of an associate’s degree and acceptance to a university. The CECHS population reflects Caldwell County demographics in regard to geography, academic achievement, ethnicity, and socioeconomic status, with an emphasis on first-generation college students and underrepresented groups in higher education.

CECHS staff is a dynamic and cohesive team, striving daily to perfect their craft and fulfill their commitment to prepare every student for college, career, and life. A culture of redefined professionalism promotes high standards for student achievement. Teachers believe the practice of teaching is public, and collaboration among teachers is the norm. They employ non-traditional methods to create engaging, problem-based activities that challenge students and develop the multi-dimensional abilities needed for college and career readiness. Students collaborate, read, write, think, and speak every day in order to identify, analyze, and solve real world problems. Non-traditional curriculum includes community service components built into the school day that develop citizenship and a sense of community. Unique seminar courses at each grade level teach life and college-ready skills. Through these structures, students thrive in a rigorous, nurturing environment that develops affective and cognitive resilience and 21st century skills for success.