WESTLAND — A new private Islamic school in a Westland neighborhood is already gaining major ground before it officially opens this September. Envision Academy is looking forward to opening its doors for high school students in order to establish academic excellence based on Islamic values, principals and morals.
|Envision Academy is a unique learning institution. It strives to cultivate academic minds through the power of knowledge.|
The 30 students enrolled at the school come from all over the area, including Downriver, Bloomfield, Novi, Windsor, Dearborn and Dearborn Heights. The wide range of students from different locations is perhaps due to the school being the only private Islamic school in the Detroit Metro area. The next closest one is located in Ann Arbor. Dr. Sulieman hopes that with a central location in the city of Westland, the school can attract students from other communities.
"This is a project that we have undertaken because there is no full time high school that is Islamic American within a close distance and caters to numerous communities," stated Dr. Sulieman. "This is a community based, non-profit project. The objective is to build a school that will bring about unique people who will be able to go out and represent our community and have excellence in academics as well."
The location of the school used to be the former location of Kettering Elementary School, which closed down a few years ago. The school is located on Hubbard St. between Merriman Rd. and Venoy Rd., and is equipped with more than 35 classrooms and administrative offices. Also included is a gym, library, computer lab, science lab, cafeteria and a soccer field.
"The location is unique in many ways, it's only 10-15 minutes from Dearborn and 10-15 minutes from Livonia. It's a center location, in a quiet neighborhood area far away from any highways and any noise," Dr. Sulieman added.
When it came to selecting the principal, the Envision Academy Planning Committee, which consists of five people that includes Dr. Sulieman, went through a rigorous process of narrowing down the candidates. They finally settled on Susan Smith, a former five-year principal of an Islamic Elementary and Middle School in Sunrise, Florida. Additionally, Smith was also a former Principal at a Pre-K-12 Islamic school in the Upper-side of New York.
|The school is a spacious 67,000 sq. ft. facility that houses 35 classes, library, and administrative offices.|
The planning committee hopes to make the school a "full-blown high school" that will include after school activities such as sports and tutoring among other things. Additionally, the school will abide by traditional Islamic practices such as dividing boys and girls into separate classrooms per grade. The school will also have special curriculums for gifted students who haven't been able to seek the proper education they require.
"The gifted child program is great because we have a really unique program that will appeal to those kids. So far we have four or five students who qualify for it, including one student from Windsor who has not been able to seek proper education until now," Dr. Sulieman added.
Principal Smith along with the rest of her staff are still accepting applicants for student enrollment. The review process will include filling out an application for the child, providing previous records and transcripts, paying a registration fee of $100, and going through an interview process with both the parents and the student. To apply a child at the school, parents can visit the school's website online at www.eaofmi.org.
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