Wake County Schools

Wake schools talking Peace partnership for leadership academies

Posted November 1, 2011 5:12 p.m. EDT
Updated November 1, 2011 6:24 p.m. EDT


— Two leadership academies opening next school year as alternatives to traditional schooling for middle- and high-school students could be put on the campus of William Peace University in Raleigh, the Wake County Public School System said Tuesday.

Both the Wake County school board and the university's Board of Trustees still need to approve the partnership. The school system had considered housing the all-boys and all-girls schools – the Wake Young Men’s Leadership Academy and Wake Young Women’s Leadership Academy – at underutilized schools in the district.

"We're excited about the chance to work with William Peace University," Superintendent Tony Tata said in a statement. "Our school system has a strong history of partnering with higher education to provide unique, student-centered instruction."

The school system has also started discussions with the General H. Hugh Shelton Leadership Center at North Carolina State University to offer some of its programming to leadership students, the school system said.

Tata proposed the idea for the single-gender leadership academies in September as a way to create more options under a new student assignment plan aimed at giving parents more input about where their children go to school.

Initially, school staff had looked at the Longview School, River Oaks Middle School and Mary Phillips High School for the programs.

Tata said the partnership with Peace, however, would provide "a stronger foundation for these two innovative schools."

"We're still exploring ways to use the Longview, River Oaks and Phillips facilities more efficiently while strengthening the student services currently provided there," he said.

The leadership academies' curricula, according to the school system, "are designed to develop future leaders through team cohesiveness, academic rigor and personal attention in a highly structured environment committed to success."

Participation is voluntary, but students must submit an application, essay, letters of recommendation, school records and undergo an interview.

Representatives of the Wake Leadership Academies will be answer questions Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon at the school system's magnet fair at Southeast Raleigh Magnet High School, 2600 Rock Quarry Road in Raleigh.

Applications will be available online beginning Nov. 5 and are due no later than Friday, Jan. 13. Notifications of selection will begin in February 2012.