Immanuel Lutheran School to expand, adding middle school

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TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) - Over the next few years, Immanuel Lutheran School will continuously add grade levels - eventually adding a middle school.

Principal Michelle Jund said next school year, they plan to add sixth grade. The year after, they will add seventh and the following will be eighth grade.

"We’ve been thinking about it for several years," Jund said.

The school has a little more than 200 students that attend preschool to fifth grade.

"We feel at this time, because our lower grades are doing really well, our numbers are looking good," she explained.

Eventually the school will be building, Jund said.

"We will be adding on to this school. More than likely we’re using modulars, depending on the finances and such," she said.

However, for the next school year, the sixth graders will be housed in the same building.

Jund said they hope to have at least 10 to 15 sixth graders next year.

"We’d like those numbers to expand but that will take time," she said.

For the middle school, Jund said they will be focusing on a more "personalized learning with an emphasis on STEM."

"Which is a science technology engineering mathematical curriculum that’s available. We feel it’s really important that our students have an opportunity to learn at whatever level that they’re at," she said.

For the pre-schoolers, the four-day program's tuition is about $2,000. For pre-kindergarten for ages four and five, it's about $2,500. Jund said for kindergarten through fifth grade, it's a little more than $4,000 a year. So the cost for middle school may be a little more.

"One of the benefits of private is that we do have the smaller class size, so we can definitely give our students that one-on-one that sometimes you’re not able to do in a public sector," Jund explained.

The costs for the expansion are still in talks.

"It depends on what direction we go and that’s not been made yet. We’re still exploring some different avenues, different funding and until we make those decisions it’s hard to say," she said.

For the next school year, the staff will be able to accommodate the new grade level, but Jund said they will add on eventually.

"We want to make sure they (the students) have a safe environment to be able to work through those middle school years, those can be challenging, and so this will give them an opportunity to kind of, you know, grow as they’re changing and feel comfortable within themselves and within their school," she said.

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