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  About The School  

The Renaissance School

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Athens City Schools’ Renaissance School is a small learning community that is part of the non-traditional school programs providing a college and career-ready curriculum. The mission is to provide a nurturing, non-traditional blended learning environment that values each student as an individual, helping each to realize his/her fullest potential.  Online learning opportunities are available anytime, from anywhere, and in a variety of forms including face-to-face, apprentice style, project-based, and flipped classroom instruction. Our curricular opportunities are designed to help our students propel past the barriers keeping them from fulfilling their desire for a better career and life.

Why the Renaissance School? Let’s face it.  Some students do well in a “traditional” school program and others do not. Some want an additional challenge to take them above and beyond the classroom environment and give them a chance to use their creativity and intellect to explore more advanced, specialized areas of study.  For others, “real life” happens and they must maintain a job during traditional school hours or help their family with personal care.

The Renaissance School is a place for students who may have not done well in the larger, less personal setting, or who may have done well in the traditional setting and want to explore advanced options.  Each student of the Renaissance School receives the individualized attention he/she needs to excel in high school and be college and career-ready.

At the Renaissance School, the focus is not solely on academic achievement. Instead, we strive to foster holistic growth by addressing each student’s social, psychological, and academic needs through the support of our partnership with Athens State University. Their staff provides a mentoring program to support students with individual and group counseling needs. Alliances with other outside resources, including local businesses, industries, and organizations, offer students “real world” experiences within an expanding, experiential curriculum.

The Renaissance School seeks to instill the foundational qualities of leadership in each of its students.  Integrity, fairness, self-respect, self-esteem, and the importance of community are all characteristics we cultivate.

An important part of the educational experience at the Renaissance School is the building of character.  Students participate in several field experiences to gain knowledge and develop leadership skills.  As a requirement for graduation, students are asked to look outside themselves and complete service projects that either they or the center design. 

Collaboration between parents, faculty, and students is a fundamental component of the Renaissance School.  By bringing these three groups together as a team, we can work together to help each student reach his/her greatest potential. 


As a Renaissance School student, you are able to take a majority of your high school coursework online, with some courses and academic support provided on-site at the center. You are able to study independently without ever feeling alone because caring, conscientious academic support is available as you need it. Our student support staff—a dedicated, hardworking team of professional high school educators, mentors, and subject matter experts—welcomes your questions and concerns. Our sole purpose is to ensure you are achieving the learning objectives for each course, and are making smooth progress toward graduation.

As a Renaissance School student, you are able to access coursework from anywhere, at any time, with valuable face-to-face support available during the day and in the evening. Your agreed-upon personalized plan can be developed with the option to simultaneously take courses at Calhoun Community College, the University of Alabama Early College, or any other college or career training center.

As a Renaissance School student, you have the opportunity to participate in a Leadership Seminar and Field Experiences to empower you for life challenges and help you become equipped with necessary skills for meeting them. Some of these include communication skills, listening skills, team work skills, and character skills such as integrity, work ethic, good judgment, maintaining a positive demeanor, and adaptability. The focus is on your individual strengths, gifts, learning styles, college/career goals, and contribution to the community. 

Student Outcomes

After successfully completing your requirements as a student of the Renaissance School, you will have gained the following:

·      Preparation for a variety of professional, civic, and personal settings.

·      A sense of personal and civic responsibility.

·      Competence in written communication skills.

·      Critical thinking and analysis skills.

·      Professional and life skills that include responsibility and self-motivation.

·      Knowledge and credentials necessary to apply for jobs, change careers, advance in their current workplace, or to pursue post-secondary or college education.


Athens City Schools System, founded in 1909, was built on the fundamental goal of providing the best educational structure for the children of Athens.  Over the years, the school system has evolved with the changing needs of our community and has grown to become one of the most respected in the state.  The Athens City Schools System's non-traditional program continues this tradition of caring for the individual student by providing a safe nurturing place to learn and grow.  As a result, we believe our students will be empowered and gain the tools they need for life-long success.

ACS Mission: Our mission is to be a progressive, high-quality school system that connects students and their families to a caring, traditional community.

ACS Vision:   A Community Connected by Education 

RC Expectations:

The following are the expectations for every student throughout their experience at the Renaissance School:

1.        When attending on-campus and online experiences, be on time and productive.

2.        Only take part in activities that contribute to the well-being of yourself and others in the community; be accountable for your personal actions.

3.        Be respectful of every member of the Renaissance community,both face-to-face and online.

4.        Be open to new ideas!

5.        Be a responsible digital citizen.

6.        Be aware of and follow established guidelines and policies.


The Renaissance School offers a structured, challenging, and personalized program designed to prepare students for college and/or career goals.  A majority of each student’s coursework is web-based and designed to prepare each student to accomplish the goals developed by the Alabama State Department of Education’s PLAN 2020. Each student will develop and follow a PLP (Personalized Learning Plan).

·      The PLP is a formalized plan completed by the student, parent, and adviser, and is at the center of each student’s success.  This plan provides an outline for the development of individualized goals, both academic and personal, and strategies for achieving these goals.

·      The curriculum is designed around the particular interests of the individual student and strives to assist each student in his/her effort to maximize individual potential while recognizing the needs for growth and development of the whole child.

·      All diplomas require English – 4 credits, Math – 4 credits, Science – 4 credits, Social Science – 4 credits, Health – ½ credit, Physical Education – 1 credit, Electives – 5 credits, Leadership/Mentoring/Individual Project - 1 credit (elective), Business Computer Applications – ½ credit. (Individual waivers are considered upon request.)


Our program gives students certain freedoms, but expects them to be accountable to a set of standards.  Our conversational approach pushes students to think for themselves and develop problem-solving skills through an online experience as well as face-to-face sessions.

The best way to determine whether the Renaissance School is best for you is to meet for a question/answer session.  If you would like to visit our facility, please contact Joanna May, RenaissanceSupervisor, at 256-614-3708 or by email at

“We need technology in every classroom and in every student and teacher’s hand, because it is the pen and paper of our time, and it is the lens through which we experience much of our world.” ~ David Warlick

Statement of Non - Discrimination

The Renaissance School admits students of any race, color, gender, age, religion, disability or national origin to all the rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded or made available to students at Athens High School.  No person shall be denied employment, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination in any program or activity on the basis of disability, sex, race, religion, national origin, color, or age. Ref: Sec.1983,Civil Rights Act, 42 U.S.C.; Title VI and VII, Civil Rights Act of 1964; Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Sec.504; Age Discrimination in Employment Act; Equal Pay Act of 1963; Title IX Coordinator, Athens City Schools, 455 US Highway 31 North, Athens, Alabama 35611


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