Friday, May 23, 2008

Caye Caulker to Open High School

Caye Caulker students will no longer have to travel outside the island to study in a high school since this year Caye Caulker will have its very own high school – Caye Caulker Ocean Academy.

According to the non-profit group’s website (, the school will be called Caye Caulker Ocean Academy; the directors who proposed this non-profit high school are local residents Heidi Curry, Joni Miller and Dane Dingerson.

CCOA will have small classes (no more than 15 students per teacher) and every student will use a personal computer every day. All core teachers have a University or Associates degree and a passion for teaching.

CCOA Enrichment Components include Marine Biology, Small Business Development and Operation, Art, and Music. The schools number-one goal is to educate Caye Caulker students to become young adults with options. CCOA will encourage students based on skills and interests: to continue to University in Belize or abroad, to work within Caye Caulker’s [or Belize’s] industries; or to start a small island business.

The school will cover the Belize Curriculum for all core classes (English, Math, Science, Social Studies, Life Skills, Spanish, and Information Technology (Computers), while using a hands-on teaching approach.

Students will have the opportunity to choose short-term elective classes from the following: PADI Scuba Certification, CPR/First Aid Certification, Jewelry Making, Sewing, Kayaking, Snorkeling, Boating, Windsurfing, and Running. It will also have team sports; and support clubs and organizations such as the Environmental Club, Chess Club, and Student Council.

The School construction is beginning now on land located near the entrance to Puesta del Sol. Classes offered will be First Form, Second Form, and a “Bridge” Preparatory Class (for students who have completed Standard 6, and need extra help before entering First Form). Third Form and Fourth Form will be added in future years.

CCOA is a private, non-profit community high school. The Founders and Administrators are Heidi Curry (Co-Principal, Director of Fundraising and Teacher), Joni Miller ( Co-principal, teacher trainer and teacher), and Dane Dingerson (Director of physical plant). Teachers will be a mix of American, Candadian, and Belizean. For more information about the school visit their website at

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