Opinion: New College Bridge program is a great alternative

Opinion: New College Bridge program is a great alternative

September 13, 2022

Have you ever heard of the Texas College Bridge here on campus? It’s a program to prepare various students for college or military as well as getting the early release or late start as a bonus for completion in case they had failed the TSI. 

With over 50 different colleges across the state along with Vernon College who have accepted this as an alternative to the TSI, this program does more than enough for those who want a second option.

I recently took part in the program. I would recommend it to those who had failed the TSI and still want access to the early release or the late start. 

The program as of now is still early in development, but overall it’s been doing much better than when it started last month. Although it would seem the program is set in stone in the district, it isn’t. It’s experimental as of this year, though it has plans to be improved upon next year. 

Various improvements can be made to the program such as having an actual math/English teacher in the room with you, which could be helpful for those students who may have to go out before or after school to ask the teacher about a question. The only current class of students who have access to the program are seniors, though the school does have the option to do juniors as well. 

This could be changed for the near future, and I’d side with juniors being able to take the class as well, as it can be done very early on if they don’t feel confident enough to take the TSI. 

For me, I failed the math TSI and hadn’t taken the English TSI yet either. Even though I wasn’t too good at math, the program really helped me remember and refresh my math skills. In the class, they also allowed us to retake or start TSI at the beginning of the year to attempt to get out of the class as soon as possible. 

I managed to pass the English TSI too, which made it easy for me to finish up the entire class within around a week. Now with a new schedule change, I get access to two early releases. Getting me out of school at 1:23 p.m. instead of 3:05 p.m. and I couldn’t be happier. I don’t have to deal with student parking and I get out early, which generally makes me a lot more motivated going to school.

Although it sounds like you should absolutely take the program in place of the TSI, it is not meant to be taken that way. It’s meant to be a secondary option if you happen to end up failing the TSI, as it’s really stretched out over a long period of time. 

If you don’t work all too much in class, it could take an entire year to complete at that point whereas if you complete the TSI, it’s all done within a day. I worked 3-4 hours every day at home on this program and finished in a week, specifically because I had passed the English half. 

They want the program to take a long time, but if you are motivated enough to get that early release or late start, it can be finished within the first month of the school year. Personally, I’d recommend trying it if you really want to, because it really helped me feel more confident in my school tests.

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Trae Stouard

Trae Stouard is a senior staff writer with The Rider Chronicle. His favorite thing to pass the time in the summer is to play cards with his grandparents....

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