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Information sessions set for students, families interested in Early College Program

Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) continues its partnership with the College of Southern Maryland (CSM) in the 2023-24 academic year by offering the Early College Program to high school students. Upcoming information sessions are planned for students and parents interested in learning more about the program and registration process.

The pilot program launched in Fall 2022 providing 150 students from Henry E. Lackey, St. Charles, Thomas Stone and Westlake high schools with a tuition-free early start to college courses. For the 2023-24 academic year, the program will accept 200 students and has been expanded to rising high school juniors and seniors at the seven CCPS high schools who want to complete college credits while attending high school. All college classes will take place on the La Plata campus of CSM with the cost of tuition and books covered by CCPS. Boxed lunches provided by the school system will be available daily for students in the Early College Program and they will be provided transportation through CCPS.

Six information sessions are set for students and families interested in learning more about the Early College Program. During the information sessions, staff will share details about the application process and program deadlines. The following sessions are available.

Virtual sessions:

In-person sessions:

  • Tuesday, Jan. 17, 6-7:30 p.m., La Plata High School auditorium.
  • Wednesday, Jan. 18, 6-7:30 p.m., Maurice J. McDonough High School auditorium.
  • Thursday, Jan. 19, 6-7:30 p.m., North Point High School auditorium.
  • Monday, Jan. 23, 6-7:30 p.m., Thomas Stone High School media center.

Parents and students can also learn more about the program at

Accepted students will be enrolled in both CSM and their zoned high school during the 2023-24 school year. Students in the Early College Program will attend classes on the La Plata campus of CSM from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Monday through Thursday.

Eligible CCPS students must be a junior or senior in a public high school during the 2023-24 academic year and have an unweighted high school GPA of 2.75 or higher. Rising juniors must have completed geometry with a C or higher by the end of the 2022-23 academic year with rising seniors having completed Algebra II with a C or higher at the end of the 2022-23 academic year.

Applications are reviewed by a selection committee that includes CCPS and CSM representatives. Selected students will receive an acceptance letter and are required to participate in a CSM new student orientation. Depending on selection criteria, some students may be required to take part in a writing improvement bootcamp over the summer.

Participating juniors will be on track to earn an Associate of Applied Science in Business Management degree which carries 60 credits. Enrolled seniors will study to earn a General Studies: Transfer Certificate that carries 31 credits.

The cost of the program for CCPS for the 2023-24 academic year is estimated at $735,000, which includes tuition, instructional materials, meals and transportation. The Early College Program is part of the school system’s implementation of the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future, an educational plan to enhance schools in Maryland and prepare each student for life after graduation.

For additional information and guidance, students and families should contact their school guidance counselor.

About CCPS

Charles County Public Schools provides 27,000 students in grades prekindergarten through 12 with an academically challenging education. Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County Public Schools has 37 schools that offer a technologically advanced, progressive and high quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares students for life, careers and higher education.

The Charles County public school system does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age or disability in its programs, activities or employment practices. For inquiries, please contact Kathy Kiessling, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (students) or Nikial M. Majors, Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator (employees/ adults), at Charles County Public Schools, Jesse L. Starkey Administration Building, P.O. Box 2770, La Plata, MD 20646; 301-932-6610/301-870-3814. For special accommodations call 301-934-7230 or TDD 1-800-735-2258 two weeks prior to the event.

CCPS provides nondiscriminatory equal access to school facilities in accordance with its Use of Facilities rules to designated youth groups (including, but not limited to, the Boy Scouts).