NEWS | May 7, 2015

New school to open at JB Charleston

By Senior Airman Jared Trimarchi Joint Base Charleston Public Affairs

The Palmetto Scholars Academy, South Carolina's first gifted and talented charter school for students in grades six through twelve is currently building a new facility on the grounds of Joint Base Charleston, S.C.

PSA, which is currently rated "A" by the S.C. Department of Education, held a ground breaking ceremony May 1, 2015, at Hunley Park. The S.C. Department of Education and JB Charleston leadership worked for three and a half years to reach this milestone.

During the process the South Carolina Legislature introduced and passed the S.C. Military Charter Law, which provides the school the ability to set aside slots in its annual lottery for children of active duty military assigned to the base.

According to Stacey Lindbergh, PSA chairman of the board and lead for starting the school, twenty percent of each class will be allotted for military children.

"We are excited to have military students and military families as a part of our school and community," Lindbergh said. "As a former military child myself, I am glad we are providing another avenue for military students to grow educationally in our local community."

Currently PSA is located in an old 15,000 square foot preschool building on the former Navy base in North Charleston.  When completed, the Academy will move into an $8.4 million, 45,000 square foot building.

"Though we were grateful to have had a building when the school first started in 2010, we are excited to be providing a new building to our growing population of students," Lindbergh said.
The facility will include 24 classrooms, two science labs, a library and a gymnasium. More than 400 students are estimated to be enrolled for the2015-16 academic year.

JB Charleston commander, Col. Jeffrey DeVore said the partnership between the school and the base will be beneficial to the education of military and local children.

"To finally have the reality of breaking ground and knowing that we are going to put an enduring educational opportunity here not only for North Charleston, but for our military families is really special," Devore said.

There were  only 185 students in attendance when the school began. The current project is targeted to be completed in December 2015 and Lindbergh said the students and military community are excited to move in.

"The amount of effort put forth by the base commanders, the 628th Civil Engineer Squadron, the attorneys and all of the military members who have been diligently working to make this project move forward is greatly appreciated," she added. "We look forward to starting this new chapter with the military community." 

For more information on the Palmetto Scholar Academy please visit www.palmettoscholarsacademy.org or call (843) 300-4118.