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Mar 28, 2014 4:16 PM by Kari Beal

Charter schools under construction in Acadiana

Today the groundbreaking ceremony was held for the Lafayette Renaissance Charter Academy. Two charter schools in Acadiana are under construction and should be ready before session starts in August. One school is off Pont Des Mouton Road in Lafayette and the other on Savoy Road in Youngsville. These schools are free for children to attend and paid for by the state and private fundraising instead of local taxes.

"I think education is that one thing that can make anyone, from anywhere, get amazing results," Jon Hage, CEO of Florida-based Charter Schools USA said.

Each school will house over 500 children from kindergarten through 6th grade. In the future they hope to include other grade levels up to high school.

"We know we will be able to give them a rigorous education that will make them globally competitive. We are very excited about this," Dr. Mary Louella Riggs Cook, President of Lafayette Charter Foundation said.

Everything from the location of the school to the color of the walls and set up of the classroom will be designed in a way to enhance learning. For example, CEO Hage explained the windows are designed to let more natural light in because studies show, natural light compared to electrical, can help students learn.

"Kids we know by brain research that they actually learn more when they are in environments that feel safe and environments that are stimulating," Hage said.

He continued to explain that having the walls a bright color like red can stimulate learning and student's individual needs are his main priority. The ultimate goal is to provide an education that will lead to more opportunity.

"You could start with no money, come from a background where you didn't really have any opportunity and you could become President of the United States because you had great education," Hage said.

Anyone interested in attending these schools can submit an application. Selection is based on a lottery drawing and people will be notified as soon as next month. Apply online here.

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