Imana headshot

Becoming Trinity’s third Head of School is both the fulfillment of a life-long dream and a homecoming for Imana Legette, who officially joined the Trinity community on July 1.

“I just thank God every day that I was chosen,” she said.

Ms. Legette’s roots run deep in Charlotte. An alumna of West Charlotte High School and UNC Charlotte, Ms. Legette began her lengthy career in education as a teacher at the Chantilly Visual and Performing Arts School (now Chantilly Montessori).

She also spent nearly 15 years at Charlotte Country Day School before moving to Pennsylvania, where she was most recently the Head of Middle School at The Episcopal Academy.

“When I think of all the experiences I’ve had, it all led me right here” to Trinity, she said.

Visiting the Trinity campus in the winter of 2022, Ms. Legette was quick to pick up on what makes Trinity special. 

“The feeling of family and belonging was palpable,” she said. “You could tell this was a community of people that cared about each other and that are happy to be there to support kids and families.”

“Trinity is a gift to Charlotte,” she said.

Read more about Ms. Legette in the spring 2022 issue of The Trinity Voice, which can be read online here.

 

Imana Chapel

The K-8 Advantage

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Understood & Valued

Society continues to push our children to grow up as quickly as possible. K-8 schools are able to teach and engage students in developmentally appropriate ways without exposure to the social pressures of high school students.

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Strong Sense of Belonging

K-8 schools are places where everyone knows everyone else’s name. Teachers and administrators are able to create close relationships with students. And cross-grade buddy systems – like book buddies and service learning projects – ensure that students at different grade levels know each other in very authentic ways.

The result is a strong community where children have a greater sense of confidence and feel safe to take the risks that learning requires.

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Middle Schoolers Are Leaders

When middle school students are the oldest in the building, they have an opportunity to serve in leadership capacities earlier. Eighth-graders often find themselves as the captains of sports teams, leading honor councils and assuming the leading roles in school productions.

The K-8 model also provides students in grades 6-8 the opportunity to mentor and serve as role models for younger children.

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High Parental Involvement

Parents often become less involved in the school community when their child attends a stand alone middle school. Because the sense of community among teachers, administrators, parents and students is so strong in the K-8 environment, parents tend to remain connected throughout the middle school years.

Studies show that parent involvement is a strong correlate with a child’s success in school – and the success of a middle school program.

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Higher Student Achievement

National studies show that eighth-graders in K-8 schools attain higher academic achievement and score significantly higher than their middle school counterparts on standardized testing.

(Source: Rockoff & Lockwood, Columbia University; Schwerdt & West, Harvard University)
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Higher Resource Allocation

In many models, middle schoolers are literally stuck in the middle. In the K-8 model, students in middle schoolers are viewed more as juniors and seniors from a leadership perspective and often they are the beneficiaries of resources that might otherwise be focused on high school students.

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Choice of the Right High School

Teachers and administrators in a K-8 community have a unique perspective on students’ growth and development. K-8 teachers watch children move from learning to tie their shoes to watching those shoes walk across the commencement stage in what often feels like a blink of the eye.

But in those nine years, parents and teachers garner invaluable insight about the child’s interests, strengths and learning styles. The result – parents feel more confident about making the “right” high school decision at the end of eighth-grade rather than at the beginning of kindergarten.