When school bells rang around Rim Country at the end of July, Tonto Village was quiet. The Shelby School has closed its doors, according to longtime staff member Elizabeth Fowler.

She said the closure occurred because, “It was unable to replace retiring teachers with others that were certified or highly qualified. The founder, Trina Kamp, and the Shelby School Board are heartbroken, but they had no choice.

“Shelby has had a great run as an Arizona charter school since 2000, and will be greatly missed by its students and staff.”

Over the years it has averaged 30 students a year and had classes ranging from kindergarten through the 10th grade.

Last year (the 2018-19 school year) it scaled back and offered kindergarten through sixth-grade classes. It operated as a nonprofit, tuition-free Arizona public charter school.

It featured:

• Small class sizes and individualized instruction as needed

• Comprehensive national mathematics and reading curriculum

• Computer-based reading intervention available

• Computer-based mathematics enrichment for grades 3 and up

• Visual and performing arts program

• Full-day kindergarten program

• Bus service from Payson and Star Valley

It provided its students with several special projects — they helped with the Empty Bowls event; took part in the Business Showcase; and held in-school plays and games.

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