First rural charter school in the state set to open in CNY Fall 2019


TRUXTON, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) – The first rural charter school in the state will open its doors in Cortland County this fall.

Located in the old Harnett Elementary building, Truxton Academy Charter School was approved for a five-year Charter by the New York State Board of Education last October.

The school will start as K-2 but will add 3rd, 4th, 5th, and 6th grades each of the following years of operation. Currently, there are 46 students enrolled many of them from towns not within the Homer Central School District, like North Syracuse and Manlius.

“It was a long hard road, but we’ve made it and we are very excited to open,” said founding member Patty Dawson.

Unlike a traditional public school, Truxton Academy Charter students will be introduced to Spanish in Kindergarten, learn about raising farm animals and gardening. Core concepts like math, science, and engineering will be taught using solely “Project Based Learning.”

“Project based learning is an interdisciplinary approach to learning where there’s an overall project and throughout that project, the students are learning about their core concepts,” said Head of School, Sara Petit-McClure, “the students then learn how to apply these concepts to real-world scenarios.”

To read more about the school’s curriculum click here.

While some parents may be wary of the different style of learning, Dawson added the school will still need to meet and exceed rigid state standards but are able to so with more freedom.

Classrooms will be arranged in a more open way without desks or rows and flexible seating options like bean bag chairs and wobble chairs will also be available.

McClure and Dawson agreed, the charter system isn’t right for every family, but invite the students and parents to give it a try.

“When you are part of our school family our mission is that we are getting input from you for what works for your kid and we don’t have to get approval from the district to meet those needs. We can adjust our curriculum to adjust to who those kids are,” said Petit-McClure.

At the time this article was posted Truxton Academy Charter School was still accepting Kindergarten, 1st, and 2nd Grade students for Fall 2019.

For parents looking to learn more about the school’s curriculum their next open house is being hosted Friday, August 9 from 3:00 – 7:00 p.m.

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