A cohort of 9th grade students from Chesapeake Science Point Charter School began taking college classes this week in pursuit of an associate’s degree. “We have worked with AACC on a sequence of courses so that this group of students can earn an associate’s degree in May of their senior year, and then a week or two later, they will graduate high school,” said Darryl Gonzalez, who created and oversees the Early College Program. “We are bringing AACC professors here, and offering the college classes during our regular school day, tuition-free,” said Gonzalez, referring to the Chesapeake Lighthouse Foundation covering tuition costs. Chesapeake Science Point Principal Erkan Derin said, “This is an incredible opportunity for some of our students to be able to enter college as juniors for very little cost.” Chesapeake Science Point is offering four AACC classes at the school this fall and will offer more each year as a new cohort starts the program. “We look forward to continuing our relationship with AACC and offering more classes. With our high school enrollment of about 240 students, to have 85 of them taking college classes this year is incredible,” Derin said.