Dear Parents and SMA Family,
It is my great pleasure to announce that our Board of Trustees voted September 15 to return San Marcos Academy to its historical configuration of serving students from kindergarten through graduating high school (K-12). This significant enhancement to our academic program will take effect in the Fall of 2018, when we will offer grades K-5 for day students and grades 6-12 for day and boarding students.
In making this decision, the Trustees considered a number of factors, all of which they and the administration interpret to be evidence of God’s direction for His school. For example, we have seen the enrollment of day students at the Academy increase steadily over the past decade, reflecting the population growth in and around San Marcos. This year, with the addition of our fourth and fifth grades, our day student enrollment has exceeded our boarding enrollment for the first time in our 110-year history. Along with the growing population in our city come new housing developments. One that lies adjacent to our property is La Cima, which has acquired all of its permits and has scheduled a grand opening for the summer of 2018. No public elementary schools are located in their immediate service area, so the Academy should be an attractive option for La Cima families.
San Marcos is no longer just a bedroom community/college town. Major industries, like Amazon, have moved into the area and brought with them many high paying jobs. Hays County is the fastest growing county in Texas. The urban sprawl of Austin, San Antonio and New Braunfels has clearly reached the San Marcos area, bringing in families who want the option of a private, Christian education for their children.
K-12: Seeking God’s Will for SMA
The Lord has provided us with an eminently qualified staff and faculty who bring many years of private day and public school experiences. We have ample facilities that can be used with reasonably inexpensive remodeling to house all of the grade levels. Our administration has completed a cost-benefit analysis and determined affordability with goals that are readily attainable. These events, along with so many more, would take a volume to chronicle and are well-beyond human invention, bolstering our confidence that this expansion is in fact God’s will for the Academy at this time in its development.
Let me hasten to say, however, that the founder of San Marcos Baptist Academy, Dr. J.M. Carroll, had a vision that the Academy would attract students from all over the world. Thus, even though we will adjust our campus to accommodate and educate local kindergarten and elementary grade students, we will continue to offer an excellent, well-rounded, fully accredited educational experience for those students and families who desire a full boarding program. The addition of an elementary component will not in any way diminish what we already offer at SMA. In fact, this is just another example of how we have expanded our options in recent years, such as the addition of a 5-day boarding program, to serve as many families as possible.
K-12: What Happens Now?
So, how will this affect your child? SMA will retain its focus on providing the best possible experience for your child with as few distractions as possible. However, you will start to see even more remodeling taking place on our campus. You will start to see advertisements for Lower School teachers as we are intent on hiring the most qualified Christian instructors available for these students. You will see announcements in various media that SMA is now a K-12 school. You will see curriculum identified, furniture acquired, playgrounds created, strategic plans formalized, and an admissions team prepared to answer questions and promote all of our varied programs.
This is indeed an exciting time to be an SMA Bear! Thank you for your support of San Marcos Academy and for helping us spread the word about the changes to come.
Jimmie W. Scott, President