Brookhaven Innovation Academy – Technology-Focused Charter School


Brookhaven Innovation Academy pic
Brookhaven Innovation Academy

An experienced education administrator, Laurie Kimbrel formerly served as superintendent of Tamalpais Union High School District in Larkspur, California. Laurie Kimbrel now leads as head of school for Georgia’s Brookhaven Innovation Academy.

Located in Norcross, Georgia, the Brookhaven Innovation Academy opened its doors in August 2016. The academy is a charter school that serves students in kindergarten through sixth grade, with authorization from the State Charter Schools Commission of Georgia to expand through eighth grade.

Brookhaven Innovation Academy strives to help students reach their full potential while preparing them for the technology-focused 21st century workforce. With an emphasis on STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math), the academy has developed a methodology called Deeper Learning by Design. Through this methodology, every student completes an evidence-based blended learning curriculum that incorporates computer coding into lesson plans.

Students take on increasing responsibility for their own learning under the guidance of the academy’s teachers, who have the freedom to tailor students’ learning to meet their goals.

To learn more about the Brookhaven Innovation Academy, visit


Brookhaven Innovation Academy Embraces Blended Learning

Brookhaven Innovation Academy pic
Brookhaven Innovation Academy

Dr. Laurie Kimbrel currently serves as the Head of School for the Brookhaven Innovation Academy, a public charter school recognized by the State Charter Schools Commission of Georgia. Part of Dr. Laurie Kimbrel’s job is to help establish the school’s curriculum and instructional program, which utilizes blended learning.

Blended learning is a teaching practice that aims to bring classrooms into the 21st century by utilizing technology to supplement and enhance education. As the name suggests, blended learning blends traditional in-class learning with online learning. Both online and in-person instruction follows the same topics, enabling the two components to complement one another. Blended learning also allows lessons to be personalized to each student, accounting for their interests and personal needs.

The Brookhaven Innovation Academy considers blended learning a core component of the school’s pedagogy. Blended learning affords the school the ability to break students into small groups with others who have a similar level of mastery in a given subject. The added flexibility also offers students more one-on-one attention, with teachers able to move at the pace of each student instead of the entire class.

To learn more about blended learning and the Brookhaven Innovation Academy, visit the school online at

The Historical Roots of Traditional Irish Dancing

Michael Flatley’s Lord of the Dance Image:
Michael Flatley’s Lord of the Dance


Laurie Kimbrel is a longtime educational leader who previously served as superintendent of the Tamalpais Union High School District and currently guides the Brookhaven Innovation Academy. Family focused, Laurie Kimbrel is the mother of a former competitive Irish dancer.

Most famously embodied in Michael Flatley’s Lord of the Dance and Riverdance, traditional Irish dancing is characterized by quick, intricate footwork and group rhythmic dynamics. Beginning centuries ago as jigs, they took a formal form in the castles of the 16th century, where predecessors to the reel were performed.

By the 18th century, dancing masters who traveled between villages became popular. Each master had a particular area of influence, and this enabled the development of distinctive regional styles. Dances from this era that still remain in the Irish tradition include hornpipes, half-sets, reels, and jigs. Today, Irish dance groups wear costumes that pay homage to traditional Celtic styles and compete in dance championships that bring groups together vying for prestigious Feis titles.