LYNCHBURG, Va. (WDBJ7) Lynchburg City Schools is focusing on growth for 2019. Students will obviously get taller as they get older, but the schools also wants them to grow intellectually, emotionally, and socially.
WDBJ7 asked Sandusky Middle School's principal what comes to his mind when he hears 'back to school.'
"Joy. I think its great seeing all the kids file back in," Matthew Mason said, adding that it never ceases to amaze him how fast students grow.
"You see these 8th graders that you've been with for three years and they're looking you straight in the eye, and it's like, 'man, how did you grow up so fast?' Some of them getting facial hair."
More than just growing up physically, Mason said middle school is also an important part of their educational journey. This year the school is determined to get accredited by increasing its scores in math, science, and English.
"We've got a great team in place, a great plan in place, and we're looking to hit that mark this year. This is our time."
The Lynchburg city school district is also working high school students through the Empowerment Academy.
"If they're not thriving in a large environment for a litany of reasons, they tend to withdrawal, literally and figuratively," Kacey Crabbe, the director of the Empowerment Academy, explained.
Here over 30 students focus on not only improving their grades but also their social emotional well being.
"The Empowerment Academy's goal is to meet the student where they are and to help them see that they have amazing things to offer and we'll get them caught up and get them on their way," Crabbe said.
For both middle school and high school, the goal is not to be perfect but to grow better every day.
"And when you do fail, failure is not a bad thing if you learn from the failure. It's only a failure if you quit. So just not quit," Mason said.
Lynchburg city schools head back Wednesday, August 14.