Liberty STEAM Charter Updates (9/1)

AMAZING THINGS HAPPEN WHEN POTENTIAL MEETS OPPORTUNITY!

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Welcome to the September 2020 Edition of Liberty STEAM Charter's eNewsletter!

Welcome to the 7th community eNewsletter for Liberty STEAM Charter (LSC)! One of the five core pillars of LSC is meaningful family & community engagement. Designed with you in mind, our hope is for this newsletter to serve as another communication tool to remain engaged with the community so you can be in the know with what's happening at Liberty STEAM Charter!
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Official Enrollment Period for K-1 Scholars Opens October 1 with a December Lottery

The Founding Board of Directors recently adopted LSC’s official scholar enrollment policy. Interested families of scholars who will be eligible for grades K-1 in the Fall of 2021 can submit an enrollment application beginning October 1. As a public charter school, we have no attendance boundaries or admissions requirements. Prospective parents are strongly encouraged to participate in one of dozens of family preview sessions that will be held throughout the fall, beginning in late September, to learn more about the unique educational model. Families who complete a pre-enrollment interest form will receive the opportunity to sign up first for their preferred session. More information will soon be shared, so sign up today!
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NEW NAME, SAME MISSION!

During its August 10th meeting, the Board of Directors unanimously approved the school’s name be officially changed from Sumter STEAM Charter to Liberty STEAM Charter. After soliciting feedback from the community, the board received 275 responses to its survey. Of those individuals, 98% agreed that a name change was necessary to reflect the rich legacy of the former Liberty Street Elementary. A formal request was made to the SC Public Charter School District on August 13th to approve the name change, which was also unanimously approved making the name change official. According to Chairman Thompson, “Not only does renaming the school reflect the rich legacy of excellence & pride in the former Liberty Street Elementary School but, moreover, it goes to the heart of our mission. I am so proud of this board and the incredible progress we have made in the last year. To our supporting stakeholders: thank you and know that we cannot wait to begin to serve this community and our families.”

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Founding Executive Director's Corner

I consider it to be a true privilege and honor to have been selected as the Founding Executive Director for Liberty STEAM Charter. I want to take this opportunity to thank everyone for welcoming me into the Sumter community. I am excited about leading the efforts to establish Sumter's first tuition-free, public charter. The vision for Liberty STEAM Charter is a complete cultural change from the traditional teaching & learning model. We will focus on partnering with our community and families to provide personalized and project-based learning experiences through a STEAM-based academic program where graduates become the next generation of leaders, ​employers, and employees who contribute to the economic well-being of their communities and families.

Since coming to Sumter for the first time in June, it became apparent to me that key LSC stakeholders believe that LSC's proposed educational model will successfully serve and reach all parts of the community in preparing our young people to participate in an ever-changing economy. Having had the opportunity to jump feet first into the work has allowed me the opportunity to learn a great amount of information in a short period of time. One thing that is clear to me is that many families across Sumter are anxiously seeking additional high-quality public school options given that our children only have one shot at a K-12 education. I encourage you to follow Liberty STEAM Charter on social media and check out our website to stay updated with new developments as we move forward in the charter authorization process. I look forward to continuing to get out and into the community in the coming weeks and months - please email me if I can ever of be assistance (kgraham@libertysteamcharter.org).


Social Emotional Learning: A Core Design Principle of LSC's Educational Model

LSC is proud to incorporate social-emotional learning (SEL) as one of the core design principles of its unique educational model! SEL is the process through which children understand and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions. Scholars will receive SEL instruction everyday during CHAMPS - Challenging Hearts and Minds to Promote Success - to start and end the day. SEL topics for instruction include self-awareness, self-management, responsible decision making, relationship skills, and social awareness.
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Liberty STEAM Charter Opens Administrative Offices in Historic Downtown Sumter

On August 20, a total of 175 community stakeholders took part in two separate ribbon-cutting ceremonies outside LSC's new administrative offices located at 117 North Main Street in Downtown Sumter. The offices will be the home of the school's senior leadership team and a place to interact with community stakeholders while renovations are completed at the Primary Academy campus, the former Liberty Street Elementary School at 15 School Street in South Sumter.
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Liberty STEAM Charter Board of Directors Meeting

Monday, Sep. 14th, 11:30am

853 Broad Street

Sumter, SC

The public is invited to attend with a few safety reminders: 1) social distancing will be practiced, 2) temperature checks will be conducted at the door, and 3) face masks will be provided upon arrival. Additionally, remember to come prior to the 11:30 am “call to order” to sign up if you are planning to participate in public participation or email your comments to board@sumtersteamcharter.org by 10:30 am.

Updates from the August Founding Board of Directors Meeting

We are excited about the future of our partnership with the SC Public Charter School District (SCPCSD). SCPCSD is the official sponsor of Liberty STEAM Charter and serves as its Local Education Agency (LEA). SCPCSD representatives Chris Neeley (Superintendent), Taylor Fulcher (Chief of Staff), & John Payne (Board Chairman) participated in the August 10 meeting of the Founding Board of Directors where they provided words of encouragement & acknowledgement to the members for their diligent efforts to ensure a strong launch for Liberty STEAM Charter! Check out the official meeting minutes!
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Liberty STEAM Charter Launches a Unique Partnership with Quixote Club

GOLF WITH A PURPOSE! The support Quixote Club will offer to Liberty STEAM Charter as its chief educational partner will further propel it in reaching its mission of ensuring all scholars reach their highest potential. According to LSC Board Chairman Greg A. Thompson, "a lead effort and goal for Quixote Club will always be to support ongoing, high-quality, free public education in Sumter and surrounding communities." Such support is very similar to what school leaders hope to replicate from Atlanta's East Lake Foundation. Under that model, the East Lake initiative provides a private funding source that supports the work of Drew Charter, a public charter school in the high-poverty East Lake community. Today, it is one of the highest performing public schools in Atlanta with graduates becoming success stories from all walks of life. The success of the East Lake initiative has served as a national model of holistic community revitalization offered through the assistant of a community network organization, named Purpose Built communities.
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Renovations Are Set to Soon Begin for LSC's Primary Academy Campus

We are excited about the Primary Academy Campus for Liberty STEAM Charter, which will serve as the home for scholars in grades PK-2. The Founding Board of Directors has taken the enormous step of renaming the charter school to symbolically honor the legacy of the former Liberty Street Elementary School. What's even more exciting is the feeling you get before a transformation is about to take place! You know, the one where you know something beautiful is going to be created? Well, we are getting the BEFORE pictures as we continue the work of honoring the rich legacy of excellence & pride in the former Liberty Street Elementary School in South Sumter.

NINE MINDS, ONE MISSION: Who are the school's founders and why are they committed to LSC?

About Us - Stay Connected!

Liberty STEAM Charter is a tuition-free, open-enrollment public charter school with a project-based & personalized learning focus and will open in Fall 2021, initially serving 144 scholars in kindergarten and first grade.