By KIM ESTES, Four Points News
A new private elementary and middle school called 4Points Academy will open on Sept. 6 at the IQuest Enrichment Center in Quinlan Crossing by a Steiner Ranch couple.
Its three-part mission is to provide a robust academic curriculum with small class sizes, full integration of technology and teacher-guided instruction that meets and enhances each child’s academic abilities.
School founders Eustace and Nesia Isidore have lived in Four Points for more than 12 years, first in River Place and now in Steiner. They have two children, a 4th grader and 7-year-old, Etienne, and a 1st grader and 5-year-old, Naome.
The couple is “passionate” about education, said Eustace, who has taught 7th grade and, in college, tutored math and chemistry students. He is now a patent attorney with an undergraduate degree in electrical engineering.
Nesia is a global trade consultant who holds a law degree and a master’s degree in international business. As the at-home, afternoon and weekend teacher to her children, she has spent many hours over the past few years researching teaching methodologies, available teaching tools and curriculum, Eustace said.
Additionally, the couple has sought outside advice for the academy and is supported by a team of educators and business professionals.
“As parents of two young children, we have researched various options available in and around Four Points and Lakeway, including central Austin,” said Eustace.
“Specifically, we realized that the area needed a school that could focus on the academic needs of the individual child with a curriculum and class setting conducive to truly differentiated learning,” he said.
Differentiated learning means tailoring instruction to meet individual needs, said Nesia.
“Whether teachers differentiate content, process, products or the learning environment, the use of ongoing assessment and flexible grouping makes this a successful approach to instruction,” she said, quoting Carol Ann Tomlinson, an American educator and author on the subject.
At 4Points Academy, advanced students will be provided a learning path that challenges them at their academic level. Students who are behind will receive instruction and additional teacher focus designed to bring them up to grade level before progressing.
However, due to limited resources, the Academy is not able to offer special education services, Eustace noted.
In addition to the core curriculum subjects of math, science, English language arts and social sciences, 4Points Academy will offer instruction in Mandarin and Spanish, music, art, information technology/robotics/engineering, sports mechanics and leadership and business development.
Within the offerings, features are a foreign language curriculum that will use an immersion-style instruction going beyond basic introductory skills to developing listening, speaking, reading and writing skills.
The sports program will be overseen by a five-time Olympian Sandie Richards, a Jamaican track and field athlete who competed for Jamaica in the 400M and 4x400M. Richards is also a former University of Texas athlete and was inducted into the Texas Women’s Athletics Hall of Honor.
With 4Points Academy, Richards will focus on fundamental skills and mechanics for a solid foundation in whatever athletic activity students are involved, Eustace said.
Finally, the school offers flexible options for homeschoolers and for families who require some flexibility and/or portability in their academic program due to travel, sports participation or other reasons.
To learn more about the program, call (512) 991-7950. Also, visit the Academy website at 4pointsacademy.com or the 4Points Academy page on Facebook.