JACKSON, MI - A new private school aimed at providing students an independent classical high school choice in the Catholic tradition is planning to open in Jackson next fall.
Headmaster Matthew Anderson stated, "The Chesterton Academy of St. George will offer a classical liberal arts education starting with grades nine and 10, beginning in the fall of 2022," with the goal of expanding to grades 9-12 in future years."
The Chesterton Academy of St. George is part of the Chestertons Schools Network, an association of schools across the country that share the same classical curriculum.
Students will study traditional topics such as history, literature, math, and science as a classical school, but they will also take philosophy, theology, drama, art, or choir all four years. Students will be able to attend Mass daily in the school.
The idea for a classical high school in the area came about last year when three Jackson families came together and were talking about education, according to Anderson.
Our kids were at high school age from a personal standpoint, and we wanted for them, Anderson explained. From a more holistic perspective, we felt that, especially with COVID, more people are now searching for more choices when it comes to schooling.
Anderson said that the school is attempting to lease a building within Jackson's city limits and is conducting opportunistic study on establishing attainable location in October with the goal of making formally announcement on that location, he added.
Anderson said that the school is set to enroll between 10 and 15 students in its first year and will operate on a tuition-based basis at $6,200 annually. Chesteron will provide need-based scholarships, according to Anderson, adding.
Many parents will be interested in getting their children in early in their high school education rather than toward the end, he said. So, the aim is to start with grades nine and 10, then add one year, each year after that for two years.
The school has started working with like-minded colleges and universities in seeking teaching staff, Anderson said, along with classical liberal arts programs such as Hillsdale College and the Catholic University of America from Washington DC.
Because the school will operate under the same curriculum as other Chesterton schools, its first few years will be under provisional accreditation from the National Association of Private Catholic Independent Schools before it seeks permanent accreditation, according to Anderson.
What we've seen from other Chesterton (schools) was network that network of individuals who have received this type of education recognize the value and often want to be involved in it passing on, he added.
On Oct. 19 and 21, organizers of the school will hold two information nights. On the school's website, more information may be obtained.
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