Mt. San Jacinto College, Beaumont Unified School District Partner to Create Middle College High School in Banning

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Hispanic Outlook on Education magazine ranked Mt. San Jacinto College (MSJC) as one of its Top 25 Community Colleges in the nation for Hispanics. CREDIT: Courtesy of Mt. San Jacinto College (MSJC)

MSJC | Contributed

The Mt. San Jacinto Community College District (Mt. San Jacinto College/MSJC) and the Beaumont Unified School District are excited to announce a partnership to launch Beaumont Middle College High School (BMCHS), a program that is intended to provide a seamless pathway for students from high school to community college.

BMCHS will feature a collaborative high school model with direct access to college-level courses and services in a community college setting. The program, housed at MSJC’s San Gorgonio Pass Campus, will allow students to begin college-level coursework as they are finishing high school and prepare for either a four-year institution or receive their associate degree and enter the workforce.

“Mt. San Jacinto College is proud to continue its long history of collaboration with Beaumont Unified by working together on this innovative Middle College program,” said Dr. Roger Schultz, superintendent/president of MSJC. “The Middle College program will increase high school graduation rates, provide students with courses that will offer college credits and serve students who are underrepresented.”

MSJC Trustee Brian Sylva represents the Pass Area, which includes Beaumont and Banning. Previously, he served on the Beaumont Unified school board.

“The Middle College vision and concept is something I have advocated for and truly believed in from its inception while I was a member of the Board of Trustees for Beaumont Unified. Now that vision has become a reality and the benefactors of that vision are the students of the Pass Area,” MSJC Trustee Sylva said. “Our students will now have access to a new pathway that will support them in the achievement of their educational goals.”

Beaumont Middle College High School will launch in the 2022-23 school year. More information will be shared in the near future on family informational nights, qualifications, and requirements for enrollment.

“I believe this is going to be an outstanding option for our students who are looking for the right path for their future,” said Steven Hovey, President of the Beaumont USD School Board of Trustees. “Our Board members are happy to see Beaumont Middle College High School moving forward through this great collaboration with MSJC.”

“We are thrilled to launch this incredibly exciting program in partnership with the Mt. San Jacinto Community College District,” said Mays Kakish, Beaumont USD Superintendent. “Our ultimate goal is to see our students graduate high school equipped with one to two years of college credits. Some could even receive an associate degree at the same time they get their high school diploma. We cannot wait to see the impact this innovative program will have on our students, especially those who may have not considered themselves college material.”

Students and families who are interested in or have questions about the program are encouraged to contact BUSD Director of College & Career Readiness Michael Breyer at 951-845-1631 or mbreyer@beaumontusd.k12.ca.us.

MSJC opened the San Gorgonio Pass Campus on Westward and Sunset avenues in Banning in 2008. Enrollments in face-to-face classes at the campus fell short of targets that would make it financially self-sustaining and the district continued to underwrite it. The COVID-19 pandemic made a deeper dent in face-to-face enrollments and shifted student demand to more online courses. In an ongoing effort to support the Pass Area, the college district will launch the Enterprise Resource and Innovation Center (ERIC) this year to help support entrepreneurs and economic growth in the region. The Middle College program will help Beaumont Unified with its need for expansion and help the region’s students who may not have considered themselves college material.

MSJC is one of California’s 116 community colleges. It serves about 27,000 annually throughout its 1,700-square-mile district. In addition to its San Gorgonio Pass Campus, MSJC has campuses in San Jacinto, Menifee, and Temecula.

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