5 Reasons Legacy is Again 'SCV's Best'
December, 2020 - Issue #195

Recently named "Best Private School" again in Santa Clarita, Legacy Christian Academy's remarkable number of accolades continues to grow. Why does the Valencia Kinder-through-eighth campus draw such positive feedback from families and the community? "We've set ourselves apart in meaningful ways," says Head of School Matt Millett, a local education expert. "Balancing Christian character education with accelerated academics and today's best technology - all within a community that genuinely loves and supports each other - is special. You can feel it the moment you step on campus."
If you're planning a tour for the upcoming 2021-22 school year, here's a preview to what you'll see - and feel.

1. Customized Education via Small Group Differentiation
In the day of over-crowded classrooms, Legacy's student-to-teacher ratio is a low 1:13 - but that number becomes even more impressive when you observe LCA's small-group rotations in action. "We know that students learn differently - and that, at any one time, the learners in a classroom are at varying levels of mastery," shares Stacie Zorichak, Legacy's Associate Head of School - Academics. That's why teachers identify similarities in learning preferences and mastery, grouping children together who would most benefit from similar shared support. "You'll see small groups of learners physically rotating throughout their classroom in teams of six to eight. They'll settle in with their teacher for targeted, topical instruction and support, getting plenty of one-on-one time to accelerate their path to mastery."

2. Academically, it's Full STEAM Ahead
There's never been a bigger demand for STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Mathematics) education - and Legacy has led the way locally and nationally. STEAM curriculum and programming come alive in Legacy's three new, dedicated high-tech spaces: the Science Lab, Innovation Lab and Discovery Hall. "But what really sets Legacy apart are our STEAM teachers, who have specialized degrees in their areas of expertise - and, in many cases, real-world experience," explains Millett. Take for example, Legacy's Mechanical Engineering class taught by a tech entrepreneur - or LCA's elementary science teacher, who has taught college courses and AP physics. The campus regularly earns Gold in the regional Science Olympiad at Occidental College.

3. Christian Character Education
From Legacy's signature "heart work" that brings character education home to weekly chapel and campus-wide programs like Legacy CEO (Chief Encouragement Officers), Biblical character education is a cornerstone of the LCA experience. "Christian character traits are built through practice, modeling and encouragement," says Associate Head of School - Activities and Spiritual Life Garrick Moss. "And character education is woven into our distinct culture."

4. Meaningful National Accolades
When it comes to test scores, you have to compare apples to apples - and that's why Legacy students are evaluated annually via the SAT-10 and ACT Aspire tests. "While Legacy's curriculum is well rounded - we definitely don't 'teach to a test' - it's important to utilize tools like well-respected standardized evaluations, as appropriate, to serve as one of several measurement tools," says Millett. On a national level, Legacy students regularly test into the top-8-percent average. "Because college admissions and scholarships aren't restricted to region or state, parents like to know that their children are academically competitive on a national level," he explains.
Legacy's consistently-exceptional academic performance, coupled with the Academy's accelerated academics and character education, earned the Valencia campus the National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence award. Legacy was one of only 50 private schools in the nation to earn the title.

5. Positive Reinforcement from Loving, Experienced Faculty
In the end, a school is only as good as the teachers in it. Says Tiffany Seston, Legacy's Director of Curriculum: "It's hard to imagine a community of educators more committed to their students - and their own ongoing professional development. Legacy teachers are credentialed - many with master's degrees - and LCA invests incredible resources into ongoing education for our faculty." But it's the practice of positive reinforcement that makes such a lasting impact on the academic and social-emotional development of Legacy learners. "Legacy is a safe place to make mistakes - and we know that when children feel comfortable taking academic risks, that's where outside-the-box critical thinking and development happens," says Millett.
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