The Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy is putting down roots in the Highland Park community. The Academy purchased the Bailey Avenue academic building the school had been leasing for the past year and a half.
“We hope really to become a hub for the community,” said CGLA Director Elaine Swafford, who is envisioning summer programs and ways to get parents more involved.
The purchase is part of the first step in an expansion project that will add 16 classrooms to the school’s existing 16.
“When the charter opened, the projected enrollment was 350 students,” Swafford said. The school has a current enrollment of 199, and Swafford expects that to increase to about 265 to 280 by next year.
In addition to swelling student numbers, the added space will allow for a science lab and an improved library and media center. Swafford hopes to allow parents to use the media center’s computers and other resources.
“We’re glad to be in the community and we want to be a part of the community,” Swafford said.
The project is expected to be completed by this fall, in time for the new school year.
Lindsay Burkholder is originally from Winston-Salem, N.C. She graduated from Covenant College in May 2012 with a bachelor's degree in English. While at Covenant she spent time writing for and editing the news section of the school newspaper, The Bagpipe. Burkholder also attended the World Journalism Institute in New York City in 2011.