Calhoun Academy of the Arts has a mission to create and foster an arts-enriched education for children that will promote academic success, community awareness, and lifelong learning.
Calhoun is an arts magnet school nestled in middle-class subdivisions with low-income and government-subsidized housing nearby. Our close proximity to Anderson University and Clemson University allows many cultural opportunities for our students (concerts, plays, poetry/story-telling, and faculty presentations). Of 622 students, 287 are Caucasian, 250 African American, and 80 are of other races. The majority of our students use bus transportation and all students receive free lunch as Calhoun is a Title 1 school.
Calhoun has 112 magnet students. Our Academically Gifted and Talented Program (Project Challenge) serves 3rd–5th graders. Our district does not currently offer a formal arts-based Gifted and Talented program. However, we partner with Southwood Academy of the Arts to support students who want to focus on arts-infused learning. Many students participate in plays at Project Challenge Playhouse.
Based on the ABC project’s Arts Infusion Continuum, Calhoun is an Arts Integration school, approaching Arts-Infused status. We offer visual arts, dance, drama, and music (including the Yamaha MIE keyboard lab), strings to 2nd–5th graders, and an after-school chorus program. We have an 800-seat state-of-the-art auditorium, featuring an orchestra pit and the latest lighting and sound technology. We hold student performances there as well as outside presentations, and we selectively share the auditorium with our community.
Awards: Three time Palmetto Silver and a Palmetto Gold Flag Award Winner; 12 National Board-Certified teachers; State Report Card “Excellent” Rating; 2011 – Exemplary Writing Award and Lowe’s Toolbox for Education grant (Outdoor amphitheater); National Arts School of Distinction Award; AIE-Arts in Basic Curriculum Grant since 2004 (1 year exception); Arts Curricular Innovation Grant; Target Field Trip grants; Distinguished Arts Grant; and Donors Choose grants.