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New Hope Christian Academy “In ’93, I believe it was just a preschool and a kindergarten.” Initially intended for childcare in the local Circleville community, New Hope Christian Academy began expanding yearly. They became an elementary, then after some deliberation, a middle school. Kim Shepherd, Academic Dean, touched on the hesitance of making the leap to high school. “Can the community really support a Christian high school in this area?” she remembers people asking. They thought so, and pulled the trigger. Today, the graduating class of 2017 marks the first cohort that moved through the entire pathway, entering as kindergarteners and exiting college-bound. It’s a far cry from the simple childcare role they played for the church years ago. “The church has been really good. They allow us to use almost every aspect of the building,” says Principal Julie Baumgardner. “They look at us as a mission, which is great.” With both a growing congregation and school body, the shared facilities were renovated to expand both spaces. A hallway bearing student art bridges a classroom wing to the church lobby, showcasing student talent to the church community.

edge curriculum. Teachers introduce coding at an early age to demystify everyday technology, emphasizing the learning and engineering process. Sherry Taylor leads the charge for their K-12 robotics program. “From kindergarten up, they are learning to program. You’ve got to get them more process-oriented, even in the classes that I teach like robotics, which is nothing more than a ploy to get them to learn coding.” She uses First Lego League activities to challenge her students of all ages, but has to be a bit inventive in order to keep costs low. The computer lab boasts two standard challenge tables for robotics activities, homemade by and for the community. “One of the family members made the tops, my husband and son made the bottoms, and this summer, we’re going to enclose it so I have more storage space.” Examples of community collaboration abound at New Hope, all to prepare young kids for a bright future. “I think programming is something kids of the future really need to get a handle on, so that they’re not just blind consumers of stuff, and realize that they can do that,” says Taylor. “It’s not rocket science.” Maybe not, but it’s not far off.

Formally designated as a STEM school just last year, New Hope melds a Christian education with the rigors of a cutting Interview and tour took place on Tuesday, May 31st, 2016.

BATTELLE Education

Profile for Battelle Education

STEM School Road Trip  

At the end of the 2015-16 school here, one of staff members called out to our member schools. In the following weeks, he visited 13 differen...

STEM School Road Trip  

At the end of the 2015-16 school here, one of staff members called out to our member schools. In the following weeks, he visited 13 differen...

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