Academy for Classical Education to become a state charter school

The Academy for Classical Education is one of the charter schools operating in Bibb County.
The Academy for Classical Education is one of the charter schools operating in Bibb County. JASON VORHEES

Leaders of a north Macon charter school announced Thursday plans to end a charter with Bibb County schools to become a state charter school.

Laura Perkins, principal at Academy for Classical Education, sent an email notifying parents Thursday afternoon before the Bibb County Board of Education meeting.

“Many of you have asked about this possibility and it has become a reality,” according to Perkins’s email. “Effective July 1, 2019, the State Charter School Commission will become our new authorizer and the local Bibb County Board of Education will no longer be our authorizer.”

In addition to removing local control, state charter allows charter schools to enroll students from any county within driving distance.

That means ACE will be accepting applications for the lottery from students grades K-12 in Monroe, Jones and other contiguous counties.

“ACE will essentially become a truly independent public school located in Bibb County,” Perkins wrote in the email to parents that The Telegraph obtained.

Applications for the lottery are due no later than midnight March 13 and the lottery is set for March 20, according to a news release from Perkins.

The school, which opened in August 2014 on New Forsyth Road, acquired about $1 million of capital paid for with Bibb County’s ESPLOST funds including the recent purchases of a 29-passenger bus for $69,000 and $224,877 worth of Dell laptops.

“We will begin the process of working with ACE to determine what the end of our relationship will look like as far as property is concerned,” Bibb County Superintendent Curtis Jones said before the board meeting Thursday night. “It’s been a great five years. We wish them well.”

The Academy for Classical Education has secured nearly 35 million in bonds to purchase and update its facilities. Hear more about the agreement during this radio segment from GPB Macon.

Laura Corley covers education news for The Telegraph, where she advocates for government transparency and writes about issues affecting today’s youth. She grew up in Middle Georgia and graduated from Mercer University’s Center for Collaborative Journalism.