SAE School opens its doors
by Lindsay Field
August 15, 2013 12:10 AM | 3970 views | 10 10 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
SAE School Head of School Jimmy Arispe assists sixth-grader Tess Colbetzor of Marietta, who was the first student registered for the new school in Mableton, as they cut the ribbon on the first day of school Tuesday. Colbetzor’s father, Tim, right, along with third-graders Brady O'Tuel and Jake Arispe, both of Smyrna, are ready for class to begin.
SAE School Head of School Jimmy Arispe assists sixth-grader Tess Colbetzor of Marietta, who was the first student registered for the new school in Mableton, as they cut the ribbon on the first day of school Tuesday. Colbetzor’s father, Tim, right, along with third-graders Brady O'Tuel and Jake Arispe, both of Smyrna, are ready for class to begin.
slideshow
Wes Tilson of Smyrna is a little unsure of his new preschool classroom at the SAE School in Mableton as his dad, Rick, talks with his new teachers after the ribbon-cutting kicked off the first day of class.
Wes Tilson of Smyrna is a little unsure of his new preschool classroom at the SAE School in Mableton as his dad, Rick, talks with his new teachers after the ribbon-cutting kicked off the first day of class.
slideshow
MABLETON — It’s been a bumpy road for supporters of the SAE School, but the school opened its doors to students through eighth grade for the first time Tuesday morning.

Head of School Jimmy Arispe, who formerly taught in Cobb Schools at Brown, Green Acres and Nickajack elementary schools and Campbell Middle, said they welcomed 120 students and 20 teachers to their school, which is now housed in the former Imagine International Academy of Mableton at 6688 Mableton Parkway.

“It was very, very gratifying,” he said about the first two days. “Some of us have been working on this for three years, so for it to finally get here — it was very surreal.”

On the first day of school, the parking lot was full and they were even shuttling parents and students from a nearby church.

“There were about 500 parents and families here,” Arispe said, adding that some parents and students showed up Tuesday morning to register.

“That is very unusual in the private school world, but it was fantastic,” he said.

Since 2011, Arispe and a group of residents in south Cobb have been trying to open a school in their area.

They first tried to petition the Cobb County School District in 2012 for a charter but were denied, and then got the same results when trying to petition the state for a charter.

They didn’t lose hope, though.

Families behind SAE refocused their efforts and decided to open a private school.

There were a few challenges down that road, too.

The Cobb County Board of Commissioners first denied a zoning permit last May when the school sought to open on an 82-acre tract of land close to where Interstate 285 crosses the Chattahoochee River in south Cobb.

Then, in an attempt to get the ball rolling once again so they could open their doors this fall, Arispe said they resubmitted another zoning permit to locate the school in the closed-down Imagine International Academy of Mableton, and commissioners approved that petition toward the end of July.

“Despite all the challenges, obstacles and ‘no’s,’ this week has been a celebration of the opening of our school,” he said.

The school will run a 200-day, year-round program. Each year the school is open, it will add another grade through 12th.

Arispe anticipates the first senior class to graduate in 2018.

Tuition costs range between $7,850 for ages 1 through preschool, $8,900 for kindergarten students and $9,400 for first- through eighth-graders.

For more information about the school, visit saeschool.org.

Comments
(10)
Comments-icon Post a Comment
Jill Meiser
|
August 16, 2013
Yes, The SAE School includes an academic preschool to prime young learners for their smooth transition into Elementary School and on through High School. Anonymous, pray tell just how young is too young to learn?
anonymous
|
August 19, 2013
"School" starts at not out of diapers yet. One. "Prime young learners?" Who determines who is a prime young learner? The wallet and the need for daycare determine that--certainly not IQ tests. I guess one can let some of the guilt go about being a parent if one can quote their one-year-old goes to a( ha) school rather than daycare. Sets them apart from the daycare crowd (how?). Pray tell, how young is too young to brainwash? How young is too young to develop a fake snob? It is never too young to learn how to be a phony.
Jill Meiser
|
August 22, 2013
The word "prime" was used as a verb, not as an adjective. Rereading the sentence in that context should clear up the misperception. Thank you.
anonymous
|
August 15, 2013
....their web site refers to "Students still in diapers will have an additional fee." Pa-lee-ze. STUDENTS still in diapers? Need farm land in the middle of the Pacific? I have some for sale.
anonymous
|
August 15, 2013
This winds up being roughly $150 per week for age 1 through preschool, about the same as a decent daycare facility for one child. The new "trend" now is to call daycare "school." The statement "The school will run a 200-day, year-round program" confirms my theory. Do tell me what you can teach a 1 year old in "school" all day. Remember parents. You child doesn't go to daycare anymore--you are paying for them to go to "school."
English Teatime
|
August 15, 2013
What does SAE stand for? I can't believe it wasn't mentioned in the article - that is, if it actually is an acronym.
pugmama
|
August 15, 2013
Smyrna Academy of Excellence
Ashanti
|
August 15, 2013
SAE stands Smyrna Academy of Excellence. They were trying to get zoned for Smyrna but got placed in Mabelton instead. So think of it as Super Academy of Excellence . . . or what ever other S word you'd like to put there, lol.
Janet Rau
|
August 15, 2013
It did stand for Smyrna Academy of Excellence. When the board made the decision to move to an independent school, we also changed the name to The SAE School (most folks were calling us that anyway). Since we are located outside of Smyrna, we are asking our students to help us decide what SAE means to them. They are also working on the mascot!

To anonymous - shouldn't a daycare be a school?
Anonymous1312
|
August 16, 2013
Smyrna Academy of Excellence. The school is temporarily located in Mableton.
*We welcome your comments on the stories and issues of the day and seek to provide a forum for the community to voice opinions. All comments are subject to moderator approval before being made visible on the website but are not edited. The use of profanity, obscene and vulgar language, hate speech, and racial slurs is strictly prohibited. Advertisements, promotions, and spam will also be rejected. Please read our terms of service for full guides