Special to Galveston Daily News
Published July 9, 2010
GALVESTON — Applications are being taken for the new middle school program at a Galveston charter school this fall.
Ambassadors Preparatory Academy hopes to have 50 to 60 seventh- and eighth-graders occupying one wing of the facility at 5001 Ave. U in Galveston when school opens Aug. 16. Plans call for the addition of four teachers to the faculty.
“We’re hoping to continue with the academic growth started three years ago,” Dr. Patricia Williams, superintendent and principal, said. Williams, a former administrator with the Galveston Independent School District, has been at the helm of the charter school since it started in 2007.
“The major emphasis right now is communicating to the Galveston community, including La Marque, Texas City, Santa Fe and Hitchcock, that we are recruiting students,” Williams said, speaking by phone from Chicago where she was attending a charter school conference earlier this week. Applications are available at the school office or can be downloaded from the school website.
The middle-schoolers will be among several additions to the school program come fall. Golf will be added to the curriculum, joining tennis and chess as school signature activities for all the students.
Plans on the drawing board include the establishment of virtual classes offering online courses for expanded foreign language instruction and research projects.
Educational field trips, such as the summer enrichment program’s excursions to Moody Mansion and Houston’s Hong Kong market, will continue to enhance classroom work.
“The programs are designed to serve the whole child through high-quality, rigorous academic, socioemotional and health and wellness instruction throughout the school day and year,” Williams said, writing by e-mail.
Also new this fall will be the school’s exemplary rating. TAKS tests results released by the Texas Education Agency show the school achieved more than a 90 percent pass rate for all grades and in all subjects, the criteria for Texas public schools to be rated exemplary.
On school totals for reading and tests, 98 percent passed; on writing and science test results, 100 percent passed.
“One of the new paradigms to adopt this year is to continue with our accountability to the state of Texas for the objectives of the TAKS test but to increase academic accountability, to work toward academic standards,” Williams said. “If we are going to expect our children to be global learners, we’re going to have to increase our academic requirements to meet national standards.”
Ambassadors Preparatory Academy moved into the old Fort Crockett campus, a former U.S. Army hospital campus, at 5001 Ave. U last year.
The bigger space allowed the school to enroll some 200 students last year, including new prekindergarten and sixth-grade classes.
This coming year, one wing of the facility will be designated for middle school, with the other wing set for elementary school.
At A Glance
WHO: Ambassadors Preparatory Academy, an open enrollment, tuition-free, TEA-approved charter school, now rated “exemplary.”
WHAT: Applications being taken now for new 7th and 8th grade classes. Application forms are available at the school office, and online. Enrollment for all grades, pre-K to 8th, is ongoing; call 409-762-1115 or enroll online at www.apagalv.org.
WHERE: 5001 Ave. U, behind the San Luis Hotel in Galveston
ON THE WEB: www.apagalv.org