CONWAY, SC (WMBF) - The Palmetto Academy for Learning Motorsports (PALM) Charter High School puts students in the driver’s seat of education, blending motorsports with academics.
After more than two years of construction, students and faculty at PALM have finally moved into their new $5.5 million facility in Conway.
“To actually be here and to operate the new building is still a dream,” Avery Moore said.
From engineering and body collision to math and science, the new PALM Charter facility goes far beyond building cars for the race track.
The new school sits on 18 acres and is nearly five times the size of the old building off Highway 501.
For faculty who’ve watched the motorsports school grow from 40 students to more than 150 students, they describe the journey as overwhelming.
“I was exactly one of the students, when you get around people that you feel you can share your knowledge with on a common ground and give them something to cherish, you can’t put it into words,” Ron Miller said.
At PALM Charter, the academic side is just as important and the vocational side of things. With the new facility, they’re hoping to enroll 200 students here at PALM Charter.
“Our classroom size is growing, but not to the point where we can’t give them the individualized attention they need,” said Heidi Roberts, PALM language arts teacher.
From the race track to the classroom, PALM puts the peddle to the medal on academics and will graduate nearly 60 students this spring.
“I started off in welding my freshman year and started liking it, now I’ve gotten into pipes and things like that,” said Brando Petro, PALM Charter Senior.
Senior Brando Petro hopes to go into pipe welding after graduation and has developed a love for his academics.
From partnerships with the Darlington Southern 500, Myrtle Beach Speedway and visits from NASCAR Legends, PALM Charter continues to drive full throttle into the future.
“This school is unique enough, the skills are unique enough that it will be something the average student doesn’t have,” said Miller.
In just five weeks the school has given over 30 tours to students for next school year.
If you are interested in attending PALM Charter for the 2019-2020 school year, you can schedule a tour by contacting Principal Avery Moore.