The Texas Education Agency unveiled a new website aimed at preparing students for college and career after graduation.
Available in English and Spanish, the Texas College and Career resource site shares information on college admission, ways to get financial help and research various careers.
"We want to help students get into college," said Commissioner of Education Michael L. Williams in a statement. "This website provides a rich array of information that can help students successfully navigate the complex college preparation and admissions process."
TEA spokesperson DeEtta Culbertson said the website has been in the works for about a year after it was authorized by the legislature in 2011.
"Students can look at colleges, put together a portfolio of their test scores, keep track of their awards, honors and their resume so when they go to do their college applications, all of that is right there," she said. "It is part of our ongoing initiatives to provide more assistance and to get more students to attend post secondary education."
The website could be especially helpful to students whose parents may not have gone to college, she added.
Secondary students can visit the website, log on and begin building their page. Training for teachers, counselors parents and students can be found at the site's training center. Live and recorded webinars are available to the training center's visitors on-demand.
Head Cleburne High School Counselor Rebecca Duncan said that while students have many options to choose from when it comes to websites that help with college and career offerings, the TEA's newest version will be another "push" to get students thinking in the right direction.
CHS is holding its College 101 programs this week, during which students and parents have the opportunity to make sure they are on the right track for college.
"We go over the SAT and the ACT, and the PSAT for the younger ones," Duncan said. There will also be a special session for athletes, presented by Athletic Director Brannon Kidd, as well as information on scholarships and steps to ensure financial readiness, she said.
The program kicked off Monday, but is also available for parents and students at 6 p.m. Wednesday at CHS or for parents only at 9 a.m. Thursday at CHS.
"There are different sessions for seniors, juniors and ninth- and 10th-graders, and an all-inclusive Spanish version," Duncan said.
Cleburne ISD's annual college night is scheduled for Oct. 16.
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