National University System to Open K-12 Charter School

SAN DIEGO, Calif. – The National University System has received approval from the Lakeside Unified School District to open National University Academy, a new K-12 charter school which will provide an innovative learning environment to students interested in a career in health care, it was announced today.

"The National University Academy will be dedicated to creating learning opportunities which are accessible, challenging, and relevant to a diverse population of students historically underserved by the traditional public school system," said Dr. Jerry C. Lee, Chancellor of the National University System.

The charter petition for the Academy was approved unanimously by the Board of Trustees of the Lakeside School District. The California State Board of Education also has approved the Academy.

The Academy will blend virtual and site-based coursework to provide a comprehensive program for students that creates multiple pathways to postsecondary and career success. The Academy's programs will emphasize a strong, interdisciplinary academic program, specialized classes and labs in the health sciences, and meaningful and authentic work-based learning experiences. Students will complete their hands-on and science lab work at National University facilities. The Academy welcomed 9th graders when it opened in September 2008 and will add a grade level of new curriculum each year.

Bernie Hanlon will serve as Director of the National University Academy. Hanlon has 38 years of experience in public education as a teacher, principal, and superintendent spanning traditional text-based programs to virtual alternative charter schools. He has extensive experience in the area of curriculum and professional development. Hanlon was an early leader in the charter school movement in California, beginning in 1994 when he wrote and secured state approval of Charter 44. Since that time, he has worked with several districts throughout California promoting both onsite and independent study programs.

"I am honored and excited to be involved in the development of the curriculum for National University Academy," said Hanlon. "The Academy's unique approach to education will help keep students engaged and motivated to learn, something all schools hope to achieve."

Across the United States, charter schools serve 1.5 million children; in California, there are currently 710 charter schools enrolling more than 238,000 students.

The Lakeside School District is one of the most outstanding in San Diego County with no low-performing schools and numerous innovative programs including an innovative Spanish immersion program.

For more information about National University Academy or the National University System, please contact David Neville at (858) 642-8163 or [email protected].

About the National University System
The National University System was established in 2001 to meet the emerging challenges and demands of education in the 21st century. The System is uniquely aligned to connect a diverse population of students to a network of innovative educational programs that are relevant to their lives, careers, and the marketplace and are delivered in a format that respects competing life priorities. In addition to the National University Academy, the National University System includes National University, National Polytechnic College of Science, Spectrum Pacific Learning Company LLC, National University Virtual High School, WestMed College, and National University International. The National University System is headquartered in La Jolla, California.

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