Tallahassee Classical School Opening for the First Time This Fall

Tallahassee Classical School Opening for the First Time This Fall

After overcoming a number of hurdles, Tallahassee Classical School is preparing to open its doors for its inaugural class this fall. The tuition-free charter school will provide students with a classical liberal arts education.

Tallahassee Classical School has been in creation for years. It was initially supposed to open last school year, but it was set back by issues with the Leon County School Board and other delays.

Back in 2018, the school board rejected Tallahassee Classical School’s application. The Florida Department of Education then overturned the rejection, allowing the school to open in 2019.

Then, missed deadlines caused the school to push back its opening to 2020. According to WTXL, 450 students who had enrolled in 2019 were forced to wait another year and find a different school to attend.

Now, Tallahassee Classical plans to officially open on the Leon County School District’s start date, which is currently set at Aug. 31, 2020.

The school, which is located on 13 acres off of Tram Road, will have more than 500 kindergarten through eighth-grade students, according to WTXL.

The school was founded by Adrienne Campbell, M.Ed, who will serve as principal, and Jana Sayler, CPA. The school is part of the Barney Charter School Initiative (BCSI), a Hillsdale College project that supports new K-12 charter school openings and emphasizes classical learning. Tallahassee Classical School will follow a classical education model.

“Classical education is the study of the traditional liberal arts and sciences, which cultivates wisdom and virtue through the pursuit of truth, goodness, and beauty,” the school’s website reads.

The school will use the Core Knowledge Sequence for its curriculum. According to the school’s website, “The Sequence is a spiraling curriculum, where students in early elementary grades receive a firm but broad understanding of the core subject areas, building a strong foundation for later learning in greater depth. The Sequence provides a grade-by-grade series of topics which build on prior knowledge that is coherent, cumulative, and content-specific.”

Main components of Tallahassee Classical School’s curriculum are Latin, which students will begin learning in fourth and fifth grade, and Singapore Math, a program that aims to lay a solid foundation in math from kindergarten through seventh grade as preparation for learning algebra.

This year, the school will also implement precautions to protect against COVID-19. According to the school’s COVID-19 opening plan, students will wear masks on the way to and from their classrooms each day but utilize face shields during learning.

The school opted for face shields because wearing masks “impedes a student’s ability to see the instructor’s mouth during phonemic instruction,” according to the plan.

Teachers will also check students’ temperatures using noncontact infrared thermometers twice per day—at the beginning of the school day and before lunch.

The school will also use the iWave air purifier, which is installed in the air conditioning system to reduce pathogens, allergens, and other particles in the air.

According to the plan, the school encourages all students to attend classes in-person “due to the benefits of in-classroom instruction.” However, the school also has a distance learning plan for families with immunocompromised students or relatives.

Tallahassee Classical School currently has seats available in some grades and is accepting applications. The school plans to start this year as a K-8 school and add more grade levels each year until it is a K-12 school.

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