Mission Statement

Austin Career Education Center provides a professional, supportive learning community in a non-traditional high school setting that engages and empowers students, nurtures and develops moral and intellectual growth, and promotes social responsibility to local and global communities, and encourages lifelong learning.


For our students we seek to create a contributing member of society who understands his or her role in the community at-large and how to be successful in it. After being presented with a wide variety of experiences and opportunities, each student is able to self-evaluate his or her own statement of realistic goals and has the tools and ability to achieve those goals.

EST 1977

Austin Career Education Center is a charter high school on the west side of Chicago that provides a second chance at a high school education. Started in 1977 as an adult literacy program, the Austin Career has evolved over time to meet the needs of the community.

More and more students of high school age were coming to Austin Career for help. In 1995, we became accredited through the Illinois State Board of education and in 1999 became part of Youth Connection Charter Schools, the largest alternative network in Chicago.

We serve about 300 students per year. Our goal is to create life-long learners so we focus heavily on post-high school plans. We have a college counselor who works with students in taking college entrance exams, completing financial aid forms, and submitting college applications. We also have a counselor that works with students who are ready to enter the workforce.

Austin Career is a community of learners that helps students reach their goals.