Ina A. Colen Academy breaks ground


Dignitaries throw shovels full of dirt during the groundbreaking ceremony of the Ina A. Colen Academy in the Calesa Township planned family community on Southwest 80th Avenue In Ocala, Fla. on Friday, Oct. 23, 2020. The ceremony was held to celebrate the beginning of construction of the Academy, named to honor Ken Colen’s late mother, Ina Colen, and will be a K-8 public charter school located in the planned 5,000 home Calesa Township community. The Academy is scheduled to open in August 2022. [Bruce Ackerman/Ocala Gazette] 2020.

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Posted October 30, 2020 | Photography by Bruce Ackerman

Area dignitaries gathered last Friday to break ground on the Ina A. Colen Academy, a public charter school named after the mother of On Top of the World developer Ken Colen. The school, which will be located in the new 5,000-home Calesa Township community off Southwest 80th Avenue, is expected to open in the fall of 2022 with 215 students. It will add grades each year until it has an enrollment of 1,450 students. Ken Colen said the charter school will focus on “social emotional” instruction by encouraging  hands-on learning and group engagement. Half the seats will be set aside for Calesa Township residents. The school is expected to begin accepting student applications soon for students in grades kindergarten through grade six for the 2022-2023 school year. For more information, go to www.iacafl.org .