by Kim Alexander

The town of Roscoe is located 50 miles west of Abilene. With a population of about 1,300, this rural West Texas community might be expected to offer limited opportunities for students to prepare for postsecondary education. Thanks to the innovative work of Roscoe Collegiate ISD and its partners, however, Roscoe students engage in rigorous learning from pre-kindergarten all the way through twelfth grade, culminating in the completion of an associate degree along with a high school diploma. GTF awarded Roscoe Collegiate a $432,000 grant to support continued development of its successful P-20 system model and to establish a demonstration site where educators from across the country could learn to implement the model in their own districts. Superintendent Kim Alexander shares his reflections on the work:

Roscoe’s comprehensive P-20 System Model begins with self-paced,competency-based instruction in pre-kindergarten and leads to the completion of an associate degree from Western Texas College and an industry-recognized certification before graduation from high school. The district’s goal is for 90% of all students who earn an associate degree to eventually earn a bachelor’s degree, and for 90% of bachelor’s degree recipients to earn a graduate degree, as well. RCISD’s first P-20 student to reach the “20” mark graduated with a doctoral degree in May of 2019.


What advice do you have for other districts that want to enhance postsecondary preparation for their students?

Don’t be afraid of change. In order for great things to happen in education, stakeholders must focus on how to get great things done rather than on barriers that might stand in the way. Getting great things done usually means that something will have to change. Change is not easy, but the opportunities for students on the other side of that change are vast. Also, be open to collaborative partnerships with higher education and industry. Those relationships have made the difference in Roscoe.

We are continually improving the model to expand the educational opportunities available to our students. For example, we recently collaborated with local industry to create several non-profit LLC companies—Collegiate Chiropractic, Collegiate Edu-Vet, Collegiate Edu-Drone, Collegiate Edu-Maker, and Collegiate Edu-Weld—to provide services to the community while allowing students to participate in practicums and paid apprenticeships. With support from GTF, we are growing our efforts to share the model with others. During the 2018–19 school year, we hosted more than 200 visitors representing Texas school districts, colleges, funders, and more. Our guests tell us they value the opportunity to observe the work in action and are looking for ways to implement what they have learned when they return home. We look forward to seeing students thrive in Roscoe and beyond as a result of the P-20 model.