Tuscaloosa school begins rebuilding two years after tornado - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Tuscaloosa school begins rebuilding two years after tornado

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Groundbreaking ceremony of Alberta School of Performing Arts in Tuscaloosa Wednesday. (abc3340.com) Groundbreaking ceremony of Alberta School of Performing Arts in Tuscaloosa Wednesday. (abc3340.com)

City and school leaders broke ground on the new Alberta School of Performing Arts. The old Alberta Elementary was destroyed by the 2011 tornado. The new school will offer more moving forward.

When the school is complete the former Alberta Elementary School will be the Alberta School of Performing Arts, the only one of its kinds within the Tuscaloosa City School District.

The principal says it's a change parents and students wanted, and one school officials thought necessary.

"It makes the child totally well rounded. It has been known to increase brain function alertness, increase test scores," said principal Brenda Parker.

Parker says incorporating fine arts into the curriculum has been in the works for the past two years. Alberta Elementary School was destroyed in the April 27th tornado in 2011.

During the groundbreaking ceremony it was clear the new school is the beginning of something unique for Tuscaloosa. The space will be the Alberta school of performing arts for grades pre-k through eighth.

"There will be dance, theater, strings as well as an outreach to community theater and other local artisans that are interested in enhancing the curriculum," said Parker.

The primary students will be exposed to several of the arts on a daily basis, as more an exploratory approach. Once students reach sixth grade, they will be able choose a fine art as an elective.

Students say they look forward to a new school with new learning opportunities.

The new school is expected to open in the fall of 2014.

If parents outside the Alberta school zone want their children to attend the Alberta School of Performing Arts, there will be limited spaces available. Through a process to be approved by the board of education.

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