Springdale Park Elementary (SPARK) is part of Atlanta Public Schools. It serves the vibrant communities of Virginia-Highland, Midtown, Druid Hills and Poncey Highland. SPARK was born in 2009, when the in town elementary schools of Morningside and Mary Lin became so popular, they outgrew their spaces. In 2009, it opened with 365 students meeting in two historic, renovated homes and one new building. SPARK was the first “green school” in Georgia receiving gold certification from LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design). and was approved for expansion in 2012. In 2014, the additional building (Briarcliff Building) was completed, which includes a new gymnasium.
SPARK embodies environmental responsibility – in everything from the construction of the school to classroom learning. Students participate in recycling and composting, as well as a farm-to-school program in which food is grown and harvested on their roof-top and land-based gardens.
The state-of-the-art school offers a rigorous course load, including art, music, physical education, media center activities and an extensive STEM curriculum for all grades. SPARK also offers Spanish (4th and 5th graders), Advanced Math (4th and 5th graders who qualify), orchestra and band (4th and 5th graders), and Gifted & Challenge instruction (for K - 5 who qualify). With the high percentage of students meeting and exceeding standards, SPARK received a 2010 and 2011 platinum award from the Governor of Georgia Office of Student Achievement.