Pinnacle Classical Academy began its third year of operation Aug. 24, serving over 466 students in grades K-8. The school will add a grade level each year until it serves grades K-12 by the 2019-2020 school year. PCA is a college preparatory school that utilizes an advanced curriculum program to prepare all students for college and career success.
The educational philosophy is based on the three R’s – Rigor, Relevance, and Relationships. This means rigorous coursework, relevant learning activities, and meaningful relationships with teachers and other staff members at the school.
The heart of the academic experience is based on the Core Knowledge Curriculum (developed by E.D. Hirsch and the University of Virginia), coupled with the advanced Singapore Math program in grades K-8. Classic interdisciplinary courses including art, physical education, music, and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) are required for K-five students and foreign language is introduced for sixth- to eighth-grade students. Pinnacle Classical Academy has the only dedicated STEM lab in the county. Students in the STEM course participate in hands-on application and experiential learning of advanced mathematical and science concepts.
Pinnacle has successfully combined a classical education model with modern technology. Beginning this school year, students in sixth- through eighth-grade will be assigned a laptop that they take to each class and use throughout the day. This one-to-one program allows students to collaborate on projects and assignments, conduct research, use online tools and applications, and develop written products and presentations.
The academy also will utilize technology to provide foreign language instruction beginning this school year. Students in sixth- through eighth-grade will use the Rosetta Stone Foundations e-Learning program for in depth study of foreign language. This year the students will focus on Spanish, but in the years that follow students will be able to choose from up to 24 different languages and dialects. These options will offer students the ability to learn multiple foreign languages during their middle and high school careers.
As PCA moves into the high school arena beginning in 2016-2017, the school will implement a rigorous series of selected Advanced Placement courses. This cohort-based program will begin in the ninth grade and will provide students with an unparalleled college preparatory experience in the core academic areas of English, math, science and history. These courses have been carefully selected to provide students with pre-collegiate preparation as well as the potential to earn significant credit at colleges and universities nationwide.
For more information about Pinnacle, visit www.pinnacleclassicalacademy.com.
Originally Published by The Shelby Star on Sep. 10, 2015