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Legacy opens doors to 7th graders

Christian academy is adding classrooms

Posted: July 15, 2008 1:35 a.m.
Updated: September 15, 2008 5:02 a.m.

Tim Borruel, center, superintendent of Legacy Christian Academy, watches as construction workers turn the bottom floor of the RE/MAX building next door to the school into classrooms.

 
Bad news for the local real estate market was good news for Legacy Christian Academy, allowing the school to take over the bottom floor of the RE/MAX building next door to house future junior high students.

“We’ve been trying to add a junior high for the past five years, but we kept running into obstacles,” said Tim Borruel, superintendent of Legacy Christian Academy. “Then the RE/MAX building had some empty space because of the declining real estate market, so here we are.”

The new space is currently under construction, with crews getting it ready to accommodate seventh graders this fall and eighth graders in fall 2009, Borruel said.

“A $250,000 tenant improvement project is turning the bottom floor of the RE/MAX building into our new junior high,” Borruel said.

Legacy is located near the corner of Newhall Ranch Road and Dickason Drive, at 27680 Dickason Drive in Valencia. A walkway leads from the playground at Legacy right up to the back door of the RE/MAX building.

The school, which previously served just kindergarten through sixth grades, used to lose kids as they were entering sixth grade when they left for other private or public middle schools. Now Legacy students can stay put for their junior high years, Borruel said.

The curriculum at Legacy’s junior high will be unique, offering a 21st century learning focus, according to Legacy Curriculum Coordinator Lori Johnson.

“We want to prepare our students — not just to learn facts and take tests — but to function successfully in a much more complex society,” Johnson said. “Our emphasis will be not just on regurgitation of information, but on creative and higher level thinking.”

Junior high students at Legacy will be prepared for high school honors and advanced placement courses, and will also be able to complete Spanish 1 in eighth grade, Johnson said. Electives, called “exploratories” at Legacy, will provide skills students can use in future careers with courses in computers, video and film, digital photography and public speaking.

Physical education classes for the junior high students will take place at the nearby Paseo Club, where students will receive training in swimming, tennis, basketball and other sports.

“That’s a big draw for families who were wondering if our facilities were going to be adequate,” Borruel said.
Legacy’s junior high students will also all be issued a laptop computer, which they will be able to check out and take home to work on assignments, he said.

“Instead of walking around with a notebook like you and I did, our students will be walking around with laptops,” Borruel said.

All Legacy students also attend chapel services and study the Bible, Johnson said. However, all religious faiths are welcome at the school, which has an open admissions policy.

“Discipleship groups will teach Biblical principles, since we are a Christian school,” Johnson said. “The kids will also learn how they can make a difference in the world.”

With the new junior high now a reality, the next step for Borruel and his wife, Donna, who founded Legacy Christian Academy with him, is a Christian high school with all the amenities. Unfortunately, at this time the $35- to $40-million project is out of their reach.

“We are still sitting here today with the hope of finding some land that is affordable so that we can get a high school off the ground in around five years,” Borruel said. “Our goal is to get the community to embrace our mission of quality Christian education.”

Space for incoming seventh graders is available at Legacy’s new junior high school. For information, call
(661) 257-7377 or visit www.legacy-christian.com.

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