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A New Chapter Begins In East Lake: Drew Charter School Senior Academy at the Charlie Yates Campus

By Cindi Kurczewski
If you’ve driven on Memorial Drive between East Lake Boulevard and Second Avenue, you know there are exciting changes afoot as construction has begun on the newest chapter for Charles R. Drew Charter School. The Drew Junior and Senior Academies at the Charlie Yates Campus will open in summer, 2014, housing Drew’s Junior Academy (grades 6, 7 and 8) and the first two high school classes, totaling 200 Drew Senior Academy students. The Senior Academy will grow each year by adding another freshman class of 100. Ultimately, the campus will be home to nearly 1,000 students, with another 1,000 students from Pre-K through grade five housed in the current Drew building.
The new facility will be a 200,000-square foot, innovative, contemporary learning space.
The building features will include project learning and science laboratories, flexible classroom spaces to accommodate various class sizes and collaborative groups, integrated arts studios, and a three-story learning commons to support research, writing, critical thinking, and communication. Key features also include full athletic facilities and a 500-seat theater that will also host professional performances and be made available to other neighborhood groups. Drew Charter School is setting ambitious goals including a 100% graduation rate beginning with the first graduates in the class of 2017, 100% of its Senior Academy students involved in advanced coursework, and 100% of its students successfully applying to college.
Neighborhood residents can expect to see the building’s framework going up by mid-to-late summer. During the construction period, residents are asked to keep children and pets out of the construction zone and to call 911 if unusual activity is spotted in the zone. Security cameras are monitoring the site around-the-clock.
Keep track of progress by regularly visiting http://drewcharterhighschool.weebly.com/index.html.

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