BY AMY BARBEE|PHOTOGRAPHY BY JOM III GALLERY, LLC OCT 2016
Tattnall Square Academy (TSA) was established as part of a long held vision of Tattnall Baptist Church. When the school first opened in 1969, classes were held on the campus of Mercer University and had only 98 students. Tattnall has grown to be one of the region’s premier private schools, has moved to its own campus, and now has approximately 500 students.
In Macon Telegraph’s Best of the Best, readers across Middle Georgia voted Tattnall Best Private School for four consecutive years. In 2016, it was also voted Best Pre-school, Best Place to Work, and Best Summer Camp.
TSA is an independent, Christian, college preparatory school offering grades K3–12, which make up the school’s three educational divisions—a lower school, middle school, and upper school. The school aims to uncover and develop the unique and God-given talents of each student while adhering to a commitment to offer a challenging, yet nurturing, educational environment.
TSA is accredited both by the Southern Association of Independent Schools and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. The faculty and staff at Tattnall aim to help students balance their time between academics, growing their faith, and extracurricular activities while helping them to understand the importance of each. Faculty and students attend chapel services each week, and bible classes are taught daily.
In K3-K5, the classrooms have a teacher and a paraprofessional who support an environment that allows children to learn and grow beyond the academic curriculum. All students are taught challenging curriculum in math, science, social studies, and language arts. In middle school, students begin studying computer science and physical education/health. At the upper school level, students also study a foreign language and choose from electives to round out their curriculum.
In addition to the traditional curriculum offered at Tattnall, the school has also implemented several new ways to enlighten and teach their students. Just this 2016 school year, TSA has started a new international program, bringing two Chinese students to the school. These two students will complete their high school education at Tattnall and be fully immersed in the environment of the school, all the while learning as much as possible about American culture. In conjunction with the new international program, Mandarin is now being offered to eighth grade students. This new language offering is only an exploratory course, but through partnerships with Wesleyan and the Confucius Institute, the academy has plans to grow the program as interest increases.
Tattnall has a Leadership Club for students who meet certain criteria, where leadership qualities are discussed and lectures from community leaders take place. The club participates in leadership panels and conferences. Wonders, a new reading program, has been implemented in the lower school. It offers a curriculum that blends both printed and digital material to stay up-to-date with current technological trends, as well as improving the reading and writing skills of students.
TSA offers zoology as a course that introduces students to such scientific practicals as dissections and lab. Seniors have the opportunity to take Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University as an elective. Additionally, female middle school students are partnered with female students from the upper school in the mentorship program. These are just some of the ways that the school is thinking outside of the box, and they reveal a passion to equip and prepare students for success after they leave Tattnall.
Head of School John Hankinson began his career at Tattnall as a teacher and coach in 1996. After three years in this role, he became the upper school principal and moved into his current role in Fall 2016. He currently has three children enrolled at Tattnall, and his eldest daughter graduated at the end of last school year. He has said, “I am not a Macon native; therefore, it took some time for me to understand the unique culture of competition among the many private schools. I trust that most schools offer a quality education; however, there are certain aspects that I believe separate our school from others. Tattnall offers the perfect balance of academic, spiritual, and extracurricular growth. I have experienced this growth firsthand with my own family. Each [of my children] has been nurtured, praised, and pushed, but most importantly, allowed to blossom into unique human beings.”
From small class sizes and individual attention to a focus on each student’s life in and out of the classroom, Tattnall has a special interest in each student’s inherent, God-given talents and interests. The school’s mission is “to provide an exceptional college preparatory education, grounded in Christian faith. We partner with families to develop the disciplines for lifelong success while inspiring a passion to glorify God in all that we do.” #
Tattnall Square Academy
111 Trojan Trail
Macon, GA 31210