With a new school year underway, A+ Charter Schools in Maricopa embraces change.
Following unanimous approval from the Arizona State Charter Board in May, the school rolled out a series of transformative initiatives aimed at enhancing academic success.
From the addition of sixth grade to a shortened week, Dean of Academic Services Nate Wong said the school’s model is a “vehicle to maximize engagement.”
Now, fifth graders looking for a charter school can seamlessly transition into middle school.
Students will get earlier exposure to A+ values including motivation, leadership, positive character development and character growth, Wong said.
School administrators said their approach is one of personalized education.
Founded in 2020, A+ offers a unique educational experience. It uses project-based learning, a teaching method that encourages students to engage in meaningful and real-world topics.
With long tables instead of individual desks and hands-on learning in place of lectures, Wong said the students are constantly learning and flexing new mind muscles.
Students and teachers are also experimenting with a new class schedule, holding core classes in the morning while electives are held in the afternoon.
“In the morning, the kids’ brains are fresh and ready to learn,” Wong said.
Principal Rachele Reese said she’s already noticed more participation and excitement.
Students’ four-day work week reserves Fridays for clubs, sports or relaxation.
“We are seeing kids more energized given their Fridays are out of school,” she said.
A+ administrators said they are looking forward to the rest of the school year with new changes in place.
“My point here is to maximize their time,” Wong said. “It’s a big year.”