Founded in 1956, Morning Star School serves children in Kindergarten through 12th grade with learning differences, attention deficit disorders, autism spectrum disorders and mild intellectual disabilities. Fully accredited by the Florida Catholic Conference, Morning StarSchool is the only special education school within the Diocese of St. Augustine.
With cooperation among parents, teachers and the community, students are afforded the opportunity to learn, thrive and succeed.
"Morning Star provides an immeasurable amount of hope for parents by placing students in an environment where they are successful," said Principal Jean Barnes.
While Morning Star promotes spiritual growth through religious education, 50 percent of its students are non-Catholic. Enrollment is diverse, with approximately 120 students attending from Duval, Clay, St. Johns, Nassau and Flagler counties.
With a 12:1 student-teacher ratio, each student receives specialized care. Students are assigned to a classroom in primary, intermediate, junior high or high school. These assignments are based on academic achievement, social ability, chronological age or other factors.
Additional resources include speech and language therapy, guidance, music, art and physical education. Available extracurricular activitiesinclude band, math lab, sports and garden club. A STEM lab, iPad lab and netbook lab help students prepare for the future. The school alsoutilizes therapy dogs for reading, behavioral and emotional support.
In November, Morning Star broke ground on a new building to extend their curriculum through 12th grade. The $1.5 million project includes eight classrooms, along with a media and technology center. The new building will accommodate 100 students and will be ready by August for the 2017-2018 school year.
Through a partnership with Bishop Snyder High School, students participate in mentoring sessions, student retreat days and socialactivities.
Morning Star continues its mission by teaching its students faith, service and academics in an atmosphere of love, acceptance andrespect, so all may reach their full potential.