Hope Christian Academy Begins Expansion - KMOT.COM - Minot, ND - News, Weather, Sports

Hope Christian Academy Begins Expansion

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The student population in Dickinson is growing fast, and it's not just affecting public school numbers. We've heard a lot this school year about the new public elementary school in Dickinson, but some other schools are expanding too. One of those is Hope Christian Academy, a small private school that might not stay too small for long. And for a school, bigger isn't always better.

"No matter how much we grow, we're still going to stay relatively small. The vision isn't to have 30 kids in a class. We like a ratio of one to fifteen," says school administrator Shane Bradley.

But for Hope Christian Academy in Dickinson, bigger is now necessary.

"When I came, I think we had about forty students. So, now, we're quite a bit larger than that and our staff has about doubled," says teacher Beth Scammon.

The school is expanding to accommodate the growing number of students. It's been an idea for years, but construction just started this summer.

"The building's changing, the school environment is changing, the amount of kids that we have. Just even last year our school enrollment was around 92 and this year we're around 115," says Bradley.

Hope Christian Academy school officials say in just two years, this lot behind me will have a building with enough classrooms for pre-K through 12th grade.

"These are exciting times for North Dakota, exciting times for Dickinson.  There's a lot going on and we're excited to be a part of it," says Bradley.

And Bradley says the new building is definitely needed. Right now, the school is using two portable classrooms.

"Without two extra portables, we wouldn't be able to have the classrooms to house the students that we have up to this point," says Bradley.

And teachers say they are excited to get back in a regular classroom.

"We're doing okay out here in the portables, but it will definitely feel a lot more unified when we can have that building together again," says Scammon.

And school administrators say the new building will also help HCA become more well-known.

"We've almost been kind of a well-kept secret for so long. We've been here for more than 30 years, but people are just sort of finding out about us," says Scammon.

This isn't the first sign of growth at HCA. Last year, they added high school grade levels.
They'll be in the new building, too. And it's going to be funded entirely from donations.



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