By: Lanetra Bennett
June 13, 2013
Tallahassee, FL - The C.K. Steele-Leroy Collins Charter Middle School in Tallahassee is transitioning to an all-male academy.
The governing body of the charter School, The Bethel Empowerment Foundation, voted to make the school for boys grades sixth through eighth.
Administrators say the goal is to teach boys at an early age strong academic principals and moral character.
Rev. R.B. Holmes, the Founder of Steele-Collins Charter School, says, "They'll become our future business owners, doctors, lawyers, scientists, you name it; teachers, parents, men who serve in the military."
The change will begin this upcoming school year in August.
Administrators say they will help the female students transition to another school of their choice.
Parents interested in the boys academy should call (850) 681-1929.
Press Release: Bethel Empowerment Foundation
There will be an official Press Conference announcing the transition of Steele-Collins Charter Middle School to Steele-Collins Charter All Male Academy for grades 6-8. The Press Conference will be held June 13, 2013, at 10:30am at the Bethel Family Life Center, 406 N. Bronough Street (Enter from Virginia Street). Following the press conference, the Advisory Council for the Steele-Collins All Male Academy will convene for its first organizational meeting.
The Bethel Empowerment Foundation, Inc., the governing body of the CK Steele- Leroy Collins Middle Charter School, has voted and agreed to transition the Steele-Collins Charter School into an all male academy. The male academy will begin this upcoming school year, in August, 2013. Steele- Collins was the first charter school in Leon County and the state of Florida. The chairman of the Bethel Empowerment Foundation, Inc. , Dr. Elaine Bryant, stated, "We are elated and excited about transitioning this charter school into an all male academy, which will positively affect the academic and moral growth of young adolescents in middle school from sixth to eighth grade."
The Bethel Empowerment Foundation, Inc. has also appointed, CK Steele - Leroy Collins Charter Middle School's Advisory Council. This advisory council is chaired by the Rev. O. Jermaine Simmons, pastor of Jacob Chapel Baptist Church. The honorable Nick Maddox, chairman of Leon County Board of Community Commissioners , Rep. Alan Williams, Chairman of Florida Legislative Black Caucus, and Attorney Ben Crump will serve as co-chairpersons.
The Rev. O. Jermaine Simmons stated, "I am humbled to be asked to chair this steering committee. I believe in the vision that God has given Rev. Holmes to motivate young boys to become productive citizens in our community. If there ever was a time we needed such an effort, that time is right now. I am committed to both the education and the empowerment of our future generations."
Commissioner Nick Maddox stated, "As an African American male who came up struggling through my early years, it would have been beneficiary if I were in a supporting and nurturing environment. I will do my level best to make sure this boys academy not only survives but thrives."
Rep. Alan Williams made these comments: "This is a vision that can make a lasting impact on the lives of young boys and their families. I am a proponent of supporting outstanding academic and moral programs that can serve as a shining light and model for our community.
This is one of those game changing initiatives that can pay dividends for not only our community but also for our state for many years to come. As Chairman of the Florida Legislative Black Caucus and as a member of the Council on the Social Status of Black Men and Boys, I will advocate for resources to strengthen this all boys academy and ensure they will have a long and healthy history and the ability to be a beacon of hope for future generations of young men regardless of race or station in life. "
Superintendent Jackie Pons has pledged his total support behind this new all male academy. He stated, "This is a great idea and I will support it 100% to make sure it will be successful."
The Rev. R. B. Holmes, Jr., the founder of CK Steele - Leroy Collins Charter School, stated, "I am thankful that over 25 of the most significant and renowned leaders of Leon County have come together to help us launch this CK Steele - Leroy Collins Charter Middle School All Male Academy. With the support of Superintendent Jackie Pons and the Bethel Empowerment Foundation, Inc. , this academy will become a major force in this city, county and state as it relates to recruiting, retaining and empowering young boys to seek their best in all their endeavors.
The Steele - Collins mission is to provide a curriculum that develops students' academic skills and to give them a sense of entrepreneurship. In times like these, we must become thinkers and educators who are not afraid of doing something different and dynamic for the betterment of our students. I trust that parents will wholeheartedly support this change as we move forward to create this all male academy whose time has come.