New charter school opening just around the corner - Education

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  • April 27, 2015

New charter school opening just around the corner

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Posted: Wednesday, June 19, 2013 1:00 am

Plans for the Toltec Elementary School District’s new K-12 charter school, Cambridge Preparatory Academy, were made public a few months ago, creating a huge stir not only among local parents, but among those from communities as far away as Florence and Coolidge.

With the opening day of the new school just a month away, teachers and administrators are busy preparing for the first day of the 2013-14 academic year.

Cambridge Preparatory Academy is a performance based K-12 school that moves away from a “one size fits all” approach. The school provides world-class instruction with multiple education pathways, providing an education that adapts to individual students needs and interests.

Serving all grade levels (K-12), Cambridge Prep will provide a single school for the entire family. Classes will run 200 days per year, and will go from 7:45 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and from 7:45 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. on Fridays. This, according to Granillo, will reduce after school and day care costs with over 400 additional hours of school each year.

Cambridge Prep is tuition free with small class sizes taught by certified and highly qualified instructors. With class sizes limited to 25 students the new charter school will feature the Cambridge Curriculum, accelerated learning, all day Kindergarten and a 200-day school year.

Each student at Cambridge Preparatory Academy will be issued an I-pad. And the curriculum is geared such that students will be able to earn a high school diploma, called the Grand Canyon Diploma, by the end of tenth grade.

Referred to as a “move on when ready” school, the goal at Cambridge Preparatory Academy is not to rush students out of high school, but to fully prepare each student for success in college and career when they graduate.

The starting date for the 2013-14 academic year at Cambridge Preparatory Academy, July 23, 2013 is just around the corner. The school year ends on June 3, 2014.

As far as the school district’s dress code, students will be expected to wear polo shirts in the following colors: maroon, navy blue, baby blue or white. Students may wear khaki bottoms, navy blue bottoms or blue jeans.

Transportation to and from the school will not be provided this first academic year. It is up to parents/guardians to provide their student(s) transportation to and from the school.

With regards to after school activities, Cambridge Preparatory Academy works hand and hand with the Boys and Girls Club that will provide options for each student’s after school needs.

Move On When Ready?

Move On When Ready is an educational model that enables students to advance at their own pace. The initiative is a well-defined, performance-based system that moves away from a “one size fits all” approach and is designed to prepare all high school students to be college and career ready.

Move On When Ready offers a Grand Canyon Diploma for students who have mastered subjects that qualify them for college level work. It is being implemented in more than 30 schools in Arizona.

Provided for in Arizona law, the Grand Canyon Diploma is a benchmark that says a student is college ready without needing mediation. With this diploma a student can attend community college or remain in high school and take additional advanced placement courses.

According to Arizona Revised Statutes 15-701.01 (L) “Pupils who earn a Grand Canyon Diploma are entitled to all the rights and privileges of a person who graduates with a high school diploma” and that they will have “access to postsecondary scholarships ad other forms of student financial aid and access to all forms of postsecondary education.”

The following eye-opening statistics were provided in the Arizona Common Core Standards Communications Toolkit.

Did You Know

Sixty percent of all high school graduates entering community college need remedial English and mathematics courses.

Twenty-two percent of Arizona students do not graduate on time.

Fifty-three percent of Arizona graduates do not qualify for admission into state universities.

Forty-two percent of employers report that their new hires are deficient in basic skills like math, reading comprehension and grammar.

“Simply put,” Granillo said, “all students need to be prepared for college, career and life. Cambridge Preparatory Academy will do that.”

“I am here to give your children the education they deserve,” Granillo said during his power point presentation, “ I am here to communicate with you, the parents and guardians,” he said.

“I encourage you to volunteer your time, and I am inviting you to come back to this district,” he said. “Together we can make the difference that we all want to make.”

About Principal Sam Granillo

Principal Sam Granillo is a graduate of the University of Arizona with a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education and a graduate of Northern Arizona University with a Master’s Degree in Elementary Education and Reading Endorsement. In December 2013 Granillo expects to receive his Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership/Principal K-12 Grade from Northern Arizona University.

Granillo, who grew up in the area, is highly qualified in mathematics through sixth grade, has a Reading Endorsement, is certified in Structured English Immersion and is bilingual, fluent in both English and Spanish.

Contact Principal Sam Granillo via e-mail at:

For more information, or for registration forms, visit the Cambridge Preparatory Academy website at:

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