When Mesa Public Schools first approached BGCEV to be a charter school as an extension of the public school, they wanted us to be an alternative program. The Board of Directors and Gary Yazwa, CEO at the time, wanted more. Having success with providing performing arts programs as a part of the Club experience, this became our platform.
We wanted children to be able to express themselves through the arts.
The first year the program was piloted to 5th and 6th grade, year two we expanded to include 7th grade, and in year three we established a K-8 grade elementary/junior high program. Teachers were on loan from Mesa Public Schools for the first 2 years as the charter grew and developed.
When it was determined BGCEV/MAA was well established, the teachers were given an option of going back to the district or staying with the charter. All teachers stayed with the charter school. In year two we hired a full time principal, Sue Douglas, who was with us until her retirement in 2017.