St. Louis Schools

Colombia School For The Gifted in the Jeff Vanderlou Neighborhood

If you pay attention, great things are happening in the St. Louis public schools. One such item of good news is the growing popularity and options around gifted-learning magnet schools.

Notice the plural on schools? Yes, there are now three separate gifted schools.

Kennard Classical Junior Academy, the oldest program located in the North Hampton Neighborhood, had an extensive waiting list, which led to the expanded program at Mallinckrodt Academy of Gifted Instruction in the Lindenwood Park Neighborhood...both in South City.

Charless Village Update - McKinley Heights Neighborhood

Charless Village Update - McKinley Heights Neighborhood

Back in November, 2016 I did a blog on some new construction I stumbled upon in the 2200 block of Shenandoah Avenue in the McKinley Heights Neighborhood.

It was a fun blog for me because it started with simple curiosity of a CF Vatterott housing development called "Charless Village" on an empty lot. But, it evolved into a deeper understanding of St. Louis' past and present. Once I started poking around, I figured out this was the site of a former SLPS school, Charless School.

Mallinckrodt Academy of Gifted Instruction

Mallinckrodt Academy of Gifted Instruction

The school was slated to be shut down back in 2009 when the school board was downsizing to cut costs associated with the declining city population and enrollment in the public schools.  The neighborhood banded together to keep the school open.  The school survived and was set up as the 2nd gifted program starting in the 2010/2011 school year.  Mallinckrodt is transitioning into a full-time gifted curriculum school, one grade per year as students currently attending are promoted over time and graduate out of fifth grade.

Gateway Science Academy

Gateway Science Academy

This post will cover the Gateway Science Academy (GSA) Elementary charter school(s) which opened in August, 2010.  I say schools in the plural because there currently exists the campus at 6576 Smiley Avenue and the soon to open South Campus for GSA elementary which will be at 6651 Gravois in the former Gardenville School in the Princeton Heights neighborhood.

The South Campus is under a full gut rehab at time of publishing and that's a great thing for St. Louis because this is yet another William B. Ittner masterpiece circa 1907 (with an addition in 1917 by Rockwell Milligan).  This sale marks the first public school being sold to a charter in St. Louis history.  The new school, to be known as Gateway Science Academy South, will start with 350 students in grades kindergarten through five, according to Salim Ucan, vice president at Concept Schools. He said plans call for one grade to be added each year so the school eventually would grow to 650 students, K-12th grade. GSA paid ~$1.2M for this landmark building (source).

Behold the rebirth...

Grand Center Arts Academy

Grand Center Arts Academy

The Grand Center Arts Academy (GCAA) is a public charter school founded in 2010 serving students in grades 6-9 currently, and they will continue to add one grade per year, until they cover middle school and high school through grade 12.  From the school website, the mission of the school is to:

Serve students with a meaningful, well-rounded education that includes a strong emphasis on the visual and performing arts and a deep commitment to academic excellence.  We strongly believe in community engagement, multi-cultural understanding, service and good citizenship.

Kennard Classical Junior Academy

Kennard Classical Junior Academy

Kennard Classical Junior Academy (KCJA) is a magnet school within the St. Louis Public School System, focusing on "gifted programs" serving children grades pre-Kindergarten through 5th. The school has been located at 5031 Potomac Avenue in the North Hampton Neighborhood since 1928.

The school building itself is another St. Louis masterpiece designed by Milligan.  Most recently the school served as a Junior Naval ROTC Middle School until it was closed in 1989 and then reopened in 1990 as the first gifted and talented magnet in St. Louis.  The building appears to be hear for the long run as the district recently invested in new central HVAC and the recent Proposition S passage brought a new roof, paved/resurfaced parking lot & playground, building & security upgrades, building envelope (whatever that means), new kitchen equipment, window replacements, and window shades.  Glad to see the investment being made is this beautiful asset to the city. 

St. Louis Language Immersion Schools - The French School

St. Louis Language Immersion Schools - The French School

This post will focus on the French School, I'll do separate stories on the Chinese and Spanish school because I'm fascinated with this place and think each should be treated independently.  The French school is located at 1881 Pine Street in the Downtown West Neighborhood just across Olive Street from the future St. Louis Police Department headquarters.

Wilkinson Early Childhood Center @ Roe School

Wilkinson Early Childhood Center @ Roe School

Wilkinson Early Childhood Center @ Roe School (WECC), is a magnet school in the St. Louis Public School System (SLPS).  It serves children in grades pre-school to 2nd.  WECC is housed in the Roe Schoolhouse built in 1919 by renowned architect Rockwell M. Milligan and is located at 1921 Prather Street in the Franz Park Neighborhood, otherwise known as "Dogtown".

Compton-Drew Investigative Learning Center

Compton-Drew Investigative Learning Center

Compton-Drew Investigative Learning Center is a middle magnet school within the St. Louis Public School System, serving children grades 6 through 8. The school has been located at 5130 Oakland Avenue in the Kings Oak Neighborhood since 1996.  

Most in the region probably recognize the school from its octagonal blond brick and aqua sheet metal construction facing Oakland Avenue directly west of the Science Center and across I-64 from Forest Park.

Mullanphy School

Mullanphy School

Mullanphy School, or Mullanphy Investigative Learning Center as it is currently referred to by the school system, is an elementary magnet school within the St. Louis Public School System.  The school is housed in a beautiful building designed by renowned architect William B. Ittner.  The school has been located at 4221 Shaw Boulevard in the beautiful Shaw Neighborhood since 1915.