The Lehigh Valley Charter High School for the Arts provides a unique environment that fosters a creative academic approach to learning and a development of talent in the arts. Built upon passion, discipline and a commitment to excellence, this integrative educational experience inspires all students to believe in themselves and what they can accomplish.
Nineteen years ago, the dream to create a high school for the arts in the Lehigh Valley came true. After developing the curriculum and submitting a charter application to the Pennsylvania Department of Education, The Lehigh Valley Charter High School for the Performing Arts received charter approval shortly after the Pennsylvania Senate passed Bill No. 123 on June 12, 1997 ,which allowed for the establishment of charter schools in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
A group of community leaders and educators searched for a suitable building to house the school which was found on East Broad Street in Bethlehem. The Lehigh Valley Charter High School for the Performing Arts then officially opened in September 2003 with 267 students studying dance, theatre, vocal and instrumental music. Young people with a passion for the arts traveled from a twelve-county region across eastern Pennsylvania to experience an extraordinary education.
Students found themselves embraced by a school that allowed them to be who they are; a place where being an artist was celebrated.
Right from the start, the school introduced special traditions that would impact students for years to come. One very cherished tradition was receiving a rose on the first day of school.
In 2004, the school expanded its curriculum and added two new majors, visual arts and figure skating.
By 2012, the student body had doubled to over 460 students. The school also began celebrating its ten-year anniversary and looking forward to the future, with a new name that would better reflect the current scope and future expansion of programs. The school became the Lehigh Valley Charter High School for the Arts (Charter Arts). The school also began to outgrow the space at East Broad Street. That same year, the Charter Arts Foundation was formed and plans to build a new facility in the heart of South Bethlehem’s arts district began.
THE NEW SCHOOL FACILITY
In August 2015, Charter Arts moved into its new facility at 321 East 3rd Street.