For this issue’s “The Buzz,” I sat down with The Capitol Encore Academy’s board of directors president, Jason Poole. He shared with me insight on Fayetteville’s newest charter school, which will be housed downtown in the historic former Capitol department store on bustling and revamped Hay Street.
What is a Charter School?
Charter schools are independent public schools run by a volunteer board of directors. Charter schools are held to the same testing standards as traditional public schools, but are given the autonomy to create an educational program that the board of directors believes will best benefit their student population.
Charter schools are publically funded and open to all students who are eligible to attend a North Carolina public school. Therefore there are no economic barriers to attending a charter school in North Carolina.
What is the concept of The Capitol Encore Academy?
We have developed an educational program that will integrate the arts into all aspects of learning. By integrating arts into the core academic areas students will not only be more engaged in learning, but they will be seeing how all learning is connected. This will allow them to develop a deeper understanding of skills and content. Our vision is that students will leave Encore Academy with the skills necessary for success in our global economy. They will be innovative thinkers, creative problem solvers and polished professionals.
Why did you place it downtown?
In teaching our students to be creative problem solvers, we want them to understand and appreciate the ability to use their community resources. In doing this, the location serves as a hub to the community. There are numerous opportunities to partner with downtown businesses and organizations will offer wonderful educational experiences for our students. The school will be within walking distance to the main public library, Fascinate-U children’s museum and the Cameo just to name a few. This level of community outreach and partnership teaches both our students and the community about giving back to the community.
What grades will be there?
We will begin with kindergarten through 5th grade when we open in August. We will continue to add grades each year until we have a complete kindergarten through high school program.
What do you see in Encore’s future?
Encore’s future is bright. We have been welcomed to the downtown district with open arms. We have also had a great response from parents throughout Cumberland County who are excited and have enrolled their children to begin attending the school in August when we open. We envision Encore to not only be an amazing opportunity for the Fayetteville community, but to be a model learning framework for education across the country.