YACS moves on athletic complex

Photo by Corinne Nicholson

Photo by Corinne Nicholson

CONYERS -- Students at Young Americans Christian School soon will have a little more space to spread out and have more opportunities to get involved in their school.

The school, which is located on Honey Creek Road in Conyers, is in the midst of expanding its campus. It recently broke ground on a new outdoor recreation complex that will include a new recreation-size football and soccer field, additional playground equipment and an outdoor classroom in a pavilion area.

"The outdoor complex is being built to support the school's continued commitment to physical education and organized athletics," said David Taylor, administrator at the school, which opened in 1988. "With the current epidemic of childhood obesity, juvenile diabetes and lack of physical education and physical activity, the school remains committed and proactive to providing additional avenues and resources."

Clark Ellard Construction of Newborn is completing the project for about $150,000. The school's annual Others Day community outreach project, in which students went out to businesses and organizations in mainly Rockdale and Newton counties earlier this year to complete landscaping work and other community service work, helped collect nearly $45,000 for the project, Taylor said.

The school currently serves about 525 students in kindergarten through 12th grades; the enrollment capacity of the school is about 550 students.

Taylor said about 65 percent of high school students participate in a sanctioned sport with many participating in multiple sports, including volleyball, baseball, football, basketball, cross country and cheerleading.

"With 65 percent of high school students being actively involved in athletics and other school activities, the school's 2009-10 SAT and ACT scores exceeded the national average, the state average and the county average," Taylor said.

Kindergarten through sixth-grade students also participate in daily recess or structured physical education classes outside, and eighth- through 12th-grade students can participate in team sports or weight training classes.

Taylor added that parents and community members also are heavily involved and attend athletic events at the school.

The complex is expected to be completed by the early spring.