Concordia Parish Academy now accepting applications
Published 12:22 am Friday, January 26, 2018
RIDGECREST — The Concordia Parish Academy of Math, Science and Technology is now accepting applications for the 2018-2019 school year.
All students in the parish are eligible to apply for the program, which is celebrating its sixth year of operation. No GPA requirements exist for entering the magnet program, but students enrolled must meet maintain a high attendance rate, clean disciplinary record and a minimum 2.5 GPA to remain.
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The deadline to submit applications is 3 p.m. Feb. 28, but the number of seats available is not yet determined.
Cindy Smith, director of elementary education in the Concordia Parish School District, said she would not know the exact number of seats available until any students not returning for next school year are identified.
“We have to wait until they tell us they’re not coming back,” she said. “Then we’ll know how many seats we have.”
The notification that a student is not returning, Smith said, is due at the end of January, meaning the number of slots available should be determined in early February.
New students are selected by lottery, meaning no student is given preferential treatment over another, regardless of GPA or other achievements.
“It’s fair to everyone,” Smith said. “Some people have the misconception that the (academy) is only for gifted students, but it’s not. It’s for everyone.”Each application is numbered when the document is turned into the office and Smith said in mid-March she and other staff members use a random number generator to select students.
“I don’t even look at the names,” she said. “It’s all done in fairness.”
After the new students are chosen, parents have a two-week window to confirm the student will attend the academy.
Smith said the students not selected are placed on a waiting list. If another student leaves the academy before the end of the school year, the next student on the waiting list is given the option to fill that position.
“The application is good for a year,” Smith said.
Smith said though the guidelines for remaining in the academy are stringent, she very rarely sees a child expelled.
“Our teachers work with students that have trouble making the grades,” she said. “We very rarely have anyone leave.”
Applications are available at the Concordia Parish School Board Office located at 4358 U.S. 84 in Vidalia or at the academy at 200 Robert Webber Drive in Ridgecrest.