NAMPA — The J.A. and Kathryn Albertson Family Foundation has granted the Nampa School District $1 million toward its creation of a new and innovative high school.

Though still on the drawing board, Treasure Valley Leadership Academy (formerly referred to as Empowerment High School) is a proposed innovation school that will have a leadership-focused curriculum for 9th- and 10th-grade students in its first year of operation, according to a press release from the district.

An innovation school is a public school that has freedoms similar to charter schools, meaning it can operate outside some state and district regulations to provide a more innovative learning environment for its students, the Press-Tribune reported on Apr. 25.

The Nampa School District announced the grant Wednesday in the press release.

Public schools can become innovation schools by following the guidelines in the “Local Innovation Schools Act” (legislation passed this March) and seeking approval from the district board of trustees and the Idaho State Board of Education. The grant is contingent on the school’s compliance with these regulations.

The school is tentatively planned to open for the 2017-18 school year and serve about 200 students. The grant would help support the school’s first two years of operation, according to the release.

Nampa School District Superintendent David Peterson will discuss the grant and the plan for the new school at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday during a work session of the Nampa Board of Trustees. The meeting will be held at the district office located at 619 S. Canyon St. in Nampa. The meeting is open to the public.

Peterson said the plan is to have the completed agreement to the Idaho State Board of Education on July 1, which is the earliest date districts can submit proposals for innovation schools.

The organization Bluum assisted the Nampa School District with the grant application.


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