The Owensboro Innovation Academy opened its doors for the first time today, welcoming just over 80 freshman students. As the first high school in Kentucky to be a part of the national New Tech Network, OIA focuses on project-based learning where students immerse themselves into hands-on projects as a way to actively learn valuable subject material.
“The school isn’t a traditional high school. It’s more like a college experience,” said Beth Benjamin, OIA Director.
Students from Owensboro Public Schools, Daviess County Public Schools and McLean County Public Schools attend the school. The program expects to enroll about 100 freshman each fall with an enrollment goal of about 400 students by 2018.
“OIA provides some of the most unique learning environments around,” Benjamin said. “The students have been incredibly impressed with the look of their new school.” OIA is located on the lower level of the Centre for Business and Research on 1010 Allen Street.
Dr. Nick Brake, Superintendent of Owensboro Public Schools, said, “You need a different learning environment to make a different high school.” The facility is still a work in progress. The concept is to have a cafe style feel with movable furniture so group projects can be done in the corners of the hallways and gathering spaces. Most classrooms have a very open look and feel with glass walls.