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Lanier Career Academy earns charter status
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The State Board of Education has granted Lanier Career Academy’s charter school request, according to a Hall County schools news release.

Hall County school system’s Lanier Charter Career Academy program will provide high school students hands-on career experience beginning this fall.

The state gave the county school system a $3.1 million grant in December to establish the charter school. The system has been waiting on the state’s official charter school approval.

The charter will strengthen Lanier Career Academy’s partnership with Lanier Technical College by providing high school students technical certification classes as early as this fall.

The majority of the grant will fund an addition to the existing Lanier Career Academy building on Atlanta Highway to house the Lanier Charter Career Academy, which could open its doors in fall 2011. The addition will include a culinary arts lab, a digital media communications lab and classrooms.

Hall County Superintendent Will Schofield and Lanier Technical College President Mike Moye plan to have Lanier Tech professors in the high school’s classrooms to provide students opportunities to earn certificates in culinary arts, hospitality management and multimedia communications. The program also will create opportunities for students interested in the medical field by offering high school students certificates in medical translating, certified nursing assistant and pharmacy assistant.

Schofield said he hopes the hands-on charter school will jar high school students out of their traditional learning schedules. He said students will be able to learn skills they can apply to their career goals.

Although the building addition won’t be complete until 2011, Moye said Lanier Charter Career Academy students could enjoy classes led by Lanier Tech professors this fall. He said graduates of the charter school could graduate from high school with both a high school diploma and a technical college certificate, which would allow them to move from the career academy to the associate degree program at Lanier Tech. "And after achieving the associate degree, they can move to Gainesville State College for a baccalaureate program," he said. "It’s all tied together in a well-planned, organized manner."