FLORENCE — Beginning next school year, Florence city schools students will have the opportunity to be part of the school system’s new Florence Academy of Fine Arts.
Establishment of the academy includes a partnership with Fame Recording Studios in Muscle Shoals whereby fine arts students will have the opportunity to learn about actual music recording and the industry in general.
During a Wednesday press conference, Florence Superintendent Janet Womack called the alliance with FAME, a “win-win situation that will go a long ways toward helping us launch this long-awaited dream for our academy.”
Local, award-winning musical artists were in attendance, as well as FAME founder Rick Hall and his son, Rodney, the president of FAME.
About 100 fine arts students attended the conference and had the opportunity to see the trailer from the documentary on Muscle Shoals music, which premiered during the Sundance Film Festival.
Womack said the academy is coming to fruition due to the district’s forward thinking two years ago when the State Department of Education offered waivers of some rules to Alabama school systems.
“We took advantage of that so that we could allow those individuals from the music and arts community to work with Florence City Schools students,” she said. “Our students in our fine arts program already have a top-notch reputation and are out-classing the competition. It’s only going to get better from here.”
Currently there are 14 fine arts programs in place in the areas of visual, writing and musical arts. With the institution of the academy, there will be nine additional classes beginning in the fall.
Lisa Singleton-Rickman can be reached at 256-740-5735 or lisa.singleton-rickman@TimesDaily.com.