A new kind of school is coming to students in Jefferson County in the fall of 2022.

The Signature Academies will be schools focused on specific areas of interest such as arts and career technical areas.

Although students will continue to take classes at their local school, they will be able to apply for specialty classes at different schools in their zones. Schools within Jefferson County will be split into four zones: Northern, Southern, Eastern, and Western.

Jefferson County Schools Superintendent Dr. Walter Gonsoulin said the opportunity will allow some students to be career-ready by the time they graduate.

“In many cases, students will be able to walk out the door with the credentials they need to enter the workforce immediately with a well-paying job or continue on with their post-secondary education,” said Gonsoulin. “The goal of Signature Academies is to expand the educational options for all students regardless of where they live or what school they attend.  We are seeking to provide more opportunities and eliminate obstacles.”

Some of the specialties include medical office administration at the Center Point Academy for College Excellence (ACE) and biomedical science at the McAdory Academy of Biomedical Science.

Buses will be provided to shuttle the students between campuses for Signature Academy courses.

“It is important to note that all academies will be optional,” the school system said in a statement. “Students are not required to apply. Also, while only some programs will be considered Signature Academies, there will be other career tech pathways at students’ home schools. Most of those programs along with AP courses will continue uninterrupted.”

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