Bingham Academy

Bingham Academy in Blackfoot.

BLACKFOOT — Blackfoot Charter Community Learning Center and Bingham Academy’s board of directors would like to invite the public to an open house from 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday.

Both schools have garnered recent media attention, and the open house is an opportunity to celebrate the accomplishments of both schools and kick-off another school year for the over 600 Blackfoot area children who attend the two separate charter schools.

The open house is also an opportunity for the public to tour the schools, meet faculty and administrators and better understand the educational opportunities the two charter schools offer to the Blackfoot community.

A recent accomplishment of Bingham Academy which will be celebrated is its designation as Idaho’s first high school, public or private, to be certified as a science, technology, engineering, and math — otherwise known as STEM — school.

Also a couple of weeks ago, the Idaho State Department of Education gave Bingham Academy special recognition in a report for the opportunity the school’s students have to enroll in dual high school and college credit courses.

BCCLC recently also has reason to celebrate. The school was just awarded accreditation by AdvancED. BCCLC is only K-8 school in Bingham County to have achieved this prestigious accreditation. AdvancED works with 36,000 different schools in 83 different nations.

The recognition by AdvancED also means BCCLC is now regionally accredited by the North Central Association Commission Accreditation and School Improvement, the Northwest Accreditation Commission, and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement.

A new program at BCCLC’s K-4 campus has many students excited. This year, a new and exciting “house system” is being implemented and students and staff alike were found with animated faces upon being randomly sorted into their house. The houses, based on five Harry Potter spells, highlight character traits (superpowers), a historical figure, a color and a quote. The house system, made famous through Harry Potter, is also inspired by the Ron Clark Academy House System.

As described on rcahousesystem.com, “The Ron Clark Academy House System is a dynamic, exciting, and proven way to create a positive climate and culture for students and staff.” BCCLC is enthusiastic as the house system will be a way to bring unity throughout the school community.

According to Kimberly Adams, a third-grade teacher at BCCLC, “houses will meet together once per month to do a house-building activity.” By meeting regularly, the older students will become mentors to younger students and be given an opportunity to take on leadership roles.

Students will also encounter a new accountability system within their house. During the term, students will be able to earn points for their respective house. Points will be given by staff members to students who are displaying character traits, citizenship, academic achievements and overall exemplary behavior.

The house with the most points at the end of the term will be that term’s winner. Not only does this points system hold students accountable for their own behavior and academics but for their housemates’ as well.

The Bingham Academy and BCCLC open houses are being held separately but at the same time. The location of the BCCLC open house will be at the BCCLC Middle School from 6 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday. BCCLC Middle School is located at 1350 Parkway Drive #30 in Blackfoot.

The Bingham Academy open house is 6 to 8 p.m. and is located at the school whose address is 1350 Parkway Drive #18 in Blackfoot. Light refreshments will be served at both events, and the public is invited to attend.

Both Bingham Academy and BCCLC are tuition-free public schools serving children and families in the Blackfoot area. Seats are still available in some grades at both schools. Those with an interest in enrolling their high school-age children in Bingham Academy should call (208) 557-4003. Those with children grades K-8 should call BCCLC at (208) 782-0744.