Liberty Tech Charter School closer to opening


It was nearly a year ago that a group of Fayette County parents were told that plans to establish the Liberty Tech Charter School would have to wait a year. The year is over and the school’s organizers are expecting to hear this summer that classes can begin in August 2016.

A main issue that prevented the school from being approved last year by the Ga. Charter School Commission dealt with not having a location firmed up by mid-May. That issue is now resolved and the location at Heritage Christian Church on Redwine Road is among the criteria addressed in the 500-page petition to be considered this summer.

Liberty Tech organizer Christi McCully said the school today has a multi-year memorandum of understanding with Heritage Christian Church on Redwine Road to use 22,500 sq. ft. of space and amenities such as the ball fields and lake.

Beyond the agreement with Heritage Christian, McCully said Liberty Tech is also discussing purchasing a building.

A change in approach from last year is the intention to be approved as a state charter school rather than a Fayette County charter. McCully said Liberty Tech has students from seven area counties pre-registered, adding that the majority of the 400 students ready to attend the school live in Fayette County.

“The goal is to have a high-quality option for education, no matter where the student lives,” McCully said.

If approved this summer so that classes can begin in August 2016, McCully said the school will open with grades 3-8 and will expand to grades K-9 in 2017, grades K-10 in 2018, K-11 in 2019 and K-12 in 2020.

Envisioned as a public, nonprofit charter school, Liberty Tech would infuse classical education with the Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) program and would partner academically with the University of West Georgia.

McCully said Liberty Tech currently has 40 community partners that will serve as mentors. Among those are the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Falcon Aviation.

Liberty Tech plans to have a 210-day school year which would provide additional instructional opportunities and the use of college students as tutors. The school will also incorporate personal virtue into the curriculum.

Liberty Tech initially approached the Fayette County Board of Education about joining the school system. The school board in July 2014 voted 4-1 to follow the recommendation of Superintendent Jody Barrow to deny the application.

McCully and other Liberty Tech parents were not fazed by the denial and made good on their word to go before the charter school commission again this year.