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UT Tyler Office of Marketing and Communications

UT Tyler to Hold Public Meetings Regarding Innovation Academy

January 30, 2012

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Media Contact:  Hannah Buchanan
Public Affairs Specialist
Marketing and Communications
The University of Texas at Tyler
903.565.5769 or 903.539.7196 (cell)

The University of Texas at Tyler will hold public information meetings regarding the new university charter school opening, Dr. Michael Odell, associate vice president for sponsored research and director of federal relations, announced.

At the meetings, school operations will be discussed, and participants will be allowed to ask questions.

“We are excited to provide this educational opportunity to the UT Tyler region. Interested parents may also submit enrollment applications for age appropriate students, if they wish,” said Dr. Wesley Hickey, superintendent.

Meetings about the UT Tyler Innovation Academy will be:

  • 6 p.m. Monday, Feb. 13 at the UT Tyler Ornelas Activity Center
  • 6 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 16 at the Palestine Campus
  • 6 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 21 at the Longview University Center

The UT Tyler Innovation Academy is expected to open in the fall of 2012 for grades 3 – 6, with campuses in Tyler, Longview and Palestine. Another grade will be added each year until the campuses will ultimately serve students in grades 3 – 12. As a state funded charter school, there is no tuition for students.

Through the connection with UT Tyler, students will have access to resources and opportunities not readily available in traditional public school settings, Hickey said. The Innovation Academy will employ cutting-edge educational practices in a shortened school day, such as project-based learning, individualized education and technology integration. Students also will engage in independent online activities outside of the school day, he added.

In November 2011, the State Board of Education granted a charter to the Innovation Academy, and UT Tyler recently received final approval from the Texas Education Agency.

For more information, contact Lisa Jett, administrative assistant, 903.565.5867 or

One of the 15 campuses of the UT System, UT Tyler offers excellence in teaching, research, artistic performance and community service. More than 80 undergraduate and graduate degree programs are available at UT Tyler, which has an enrollment of almost 7,000 high-ability students at its campuses in Tyler, Longview and Palestine.