For Spring Branch Independent School District, the Preparing to Dream initiative fit right in with the Five-Year Education Plan adopted by the district in 2006. With the overall goal of being the premier college-focused district in Texas and preparing all students for success after high school, Spring Branch focused its PTD work on improving methods to track and survey graduates of the district, in order to determine how to better prepare students for post-secondary studies. In year two of the initiative, Spring Branch responded immediately to an identified need and developed an Early College Program (ECP) in partnership with Houston Community College, in order to more effectively deliver dual credit courses to students from all the district high schools.

District Activities

  • Spring Branch has tracked and surveyed approximately 5,400 of its graduates from the Classes of 2008, 2009 and 2010.
  • All 14 of the Class of 2010 graduates who participated in ECP went on to enroll in college in fall 2010. Approximately 87 students completed the fall semester 2010 at HCC. The first group of ECP participants to earn 30+ semester hours will be graduating in May 2011.
  • National Student Clearinghouse data indicates some increases in college-going rates from Spring Branch ISD, from 66% from the class of 2006 enrolling in college in their first year after high school up to 69% for the class of 2009.


  • Spring Branch’s student survey tracking process is fully implemented. Initial analysis shows a significant correlation between students’ feelings of preparedness and college attendance. Students have said they need more help with study skills, college orientation, and dual credit.
  • Student needs for more college preparation are beginning to be met in the Early College Program. District funding cuts will require tuition to be charged beginning next year, but some PTD overage will be repurposed to provide scholarships.
  • The district’s Early College Program is expanding through partnerships with local higher education institutions. Course offerings at Houston Community College are increasing, and the district is initiating partnerships with University of Houston-Downtown and University of St. Thomas for additional opportunities.
  • Preparing to Dream activities have transformed district practice by expanding dual credit and college preparedness activities beyond the high schools where those were traditionally offered. In addition, college preparedness is seen as the responsibility of all departments, not just counseling.
  • Spring Branch will begin utilizing the COMPASS test at all high school campuses to assess the readiness of rising seniors to be successful in college level courses. Results from the test will be utilized to help ensure that students receive appropriate remediation while still in high school.

Notable Results

Historically, dual credit courses at Spring Branch were primarily available to the high schools serving the higher socio-economic students. With PTD, this completion rate has more than doubled for African American students and increased significantly for Hispanic and economically disadvantaged students.
The percentage of African American graduates deemed “college ready” doubled from 2006 to 2009, while the percentage of Hispanic graduates so designated increased significantly from 27% to 38%.
As with all of our PTD districts, we expect to show additional improvement in performance when more current data becomes available.


About Spring Branch ISD

Team Leaders

Dr. Duncan Klussman

Jennifer Cobb
Team Leaders (2009-11)

Pat Waldrop
Team Leaders (2007-09)

Amanda Salinas
Data Leader

Dr. Zachary Hodges
Core Team Coach

Mary Alice Wills
Core Team Coaches

Dr. Deborah Santiago
Data Facilitator (2007-09)

Dr. Jacqueline Hawkins
Data Facilitator (2009-11)