School Changes

tuition hike

School is out of session this summer at King's Academy in Meridian. Come this fall not much will change because the school is closing.

"We didn't have any choice the cash flow got so bad," said Reverend Jack Giles.

Rev. Jack Giles is pastor of Church of the Way, the financial backbone for the school. Founded nine years ago 76 students were enrolled last year at King's Academy in Kindergarten through 12th grades.

Since Sept. 11, Pastor Giles says donations to religious organizations have dropped almost 50-percent nationwide. In years past Giles says King's Academy has operated on a shoestring budget at best. It was this year's drop in donations, which he said made the difference. With that mind he says King's Academy will be closed this year, but will hopefully reopen in the fall of 2003.

"We're looking at some grant possibilities. Almost everybody knows that without a sports program the school is not going to fly, but we have dreams of correcting that," said Rev. Giles.

Meanwhile, it's a different story for Calvary Christian School. Founded in 1961, the school has previously served students up to the seventh grade. However, school officials say they are now following through on the founder's initial plans of adding a high school.

"Already this year, excluding students from King's Academy, we're already over 100 and that hasn't happened in a number of years," said Rev. Bob Followell, Calvary Baptist Church.

Reverend Followell says the church body still must give final approval for the expansion. He expects that to happen this Sunday. Meanwhile, officials at King's Academy say with a growing number of people now expressing support for the school, they are optimistic.

"If some of those people could indicate a real desire about helping us in the future it would put feet on our prayers," Rev. Jack Giles said. "We are indeed optimistic!"