By Val Simon
The Collier County School Board recently approved the charter school application as presented by the Marco Island Academy. The school will be open to students in August 2011, although a location for the school has not been finalized. Three locations have been proposed and subsequently dropped.“Marco Island Academy is looking at four potential locations,” according to Jane Watt, “we want to find something that fits in the community.” Plans include a state-of-the art green building.“We’ve received several resumes from teachers from all over, but we are not in the interviewing process yet. Getting the right director or principal in place is the first order of business. The right candidate must be able to carry-out the vision of the school. When reviewing the applications for teachers, we may look for dual certification so the teacher can offer two different types of classes. Class size will be approximately 19-1. This smaller student-teacher ratio has been shown to improve outcome. We have looked at a scheduling system which has 90 minute class blocks rather than the usual 48 minute class. There is less change-over between classrooms and this system has proven effective in other schools. We want to continue the standard of educational excellence as set forth by the elementary and middle school on the island. “ According to a press release issued by the school upon the charter approval, Marco Island Academy is projecting 200-250 students entering 9th and 10th grade in the 2011-2012 school year. 11th grade will be added the following year and 12th grade the year after. Organizers are holding a Bridal Boutique Fundraiser January 13th-23rd, 2011. Dresses are being accepted for the fundraiser and will be added to a collection of new dresses which have been donated by Tie-the-Knot in Naples. For more information call 239-404-3622.