VALDOSTA, Ga. (WALB) - The only charter school in Lowndes County is expanding by adding a middle school to its campus that will start next school year.
Currently, Scintilla Charter Academy (SCA) goes from kindergarten to sixth grade. Now, those sixth graders will be able to stay for their middle school years.
This will also provide others in the community with another option for school.
“I’m excited to stay at Scintilla with my friends, teachers,” said Akai Taylor, a sixth-grade student at the academy.
Taylor will now be able to spend his remaining middle school years at Scintilla Charter Academy. He’s been at the school since third grade.
He said he also plans to play sports.
Aside from expanding the middle school program, SCA plans to add sports and extracurricular activities for the middle schoolers.
“We think middle school is really a vital time for students and a lot of times, it’s the year they start to lose interest in school and things can be different, it’s a difficult time. So being able to provide a small learning environment in the culture they come up through first grade with us and continue through,” said Jennifer Denham, the director of communications.
Denham said they are glad to be able to offer current and prospective students in the community another middle school option. She said they received a positive response from parents and that they had been pushing for the idea for years.
“I think we have kids who have thrived here at SCA and they want to stay, their parents want them to stay, so for us to be able to provide that to them for a couple of years is just awesome for the kids and for teachers as well,” said Matt McCoy, a sixth-grade math teacher.
McCoy said it’s going to be great for teachers to be able to see their students continue on through middle school.
Construction will begin in the summer, the new building will have classes and a gym for sports and special events.
Seventh grade will begin in the 2021-2022 school year and eighth grade in 2023.
There is currently a waiting list for students but parents who may be interested can complete an admissions application.