With this year’s graduating class at Center Place Restoration School, more than 400 students will have graduated since the school opened in 1991. Of those students, 29 have earned an ACT score of 30 or above.

With this year’s graduating class at Center Place Restoration School, more than 400 students will have graduated since the school opened in 1991. Of those students, 29 have earned an ACT score of 30 or above.


Richard Neill, principal at Center Place, said this demonstrates the emphasis on quality education at the Independence private school.


“Our students have done very well academically over the years,” he said. “We do have the fine arts, plays, choirs and an athletic program, but we place a strong emphasis on offering a good education.”


Center Place Restoration, 819 W. Waldo in Independence, is celebrating its 20th anniversary this weekend with several activities.


The weekend started with a building tour Friday. Alumni and former staff were invited to the self-guided tour of the facility. It was followed by an Alumni Cookout, from 6 to 9 p.m. in the east parking lot.


On Saturday, there will be a prayer service from 8 to 9 a.m. in the school auditorium. It will be followed by a family carnival from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the school gymnasiums and west parking lot. The carnival will include games such as ring toss, go fish, football toss, balloons darts, a dunk tank and an obstacle course. Game tokens are required and can be purchased upon entry. Prize tickets can be redeemed at the prize station,. The event will also include a concession stand.


“Our anniversary events are in recognition of the school and will give people the opportunity to see others they haven’t seen in years,” said Pam Chrislip, the secretary at Center Place Restoration and member of the celebration committee. “It is a time for all of us to celebrate what has happened the last 20 years.”


Center Place was founded in 1991 by the efforts of Restoration Branches across the country. Neill said there was a desire within the church fellowship to have a school dedicate to Jesus Christ, the restoration movement and quality education. Along with traditional subjects, the school teaches the gospel according to the Holy Scriptures, Book of Mormon and Doctrine and Covenants.


There are three levels in the school – elementary, K-5; Middle School, sixth through eighth grade and High School, which is nine through 12th grades. Center Place is also certified to take students from foreign countries. This means over the years, students from Kenya Vietnam, Belize, Australia and Germany have graduated from the school.


“Every year, an increasing number of alumni bring their children back to attend school,” Chrislip said. “It is fun watching them walk through the halls with their kids talking about their time at Center Place. It shows what an impact our school had on them.”


Saturday’s activities will end with a concert from 7 to 9 p.m. in the school auditorium. Individuals and groups from the Restoration movement will share vocal and instrumental talents during the concert. Sunday, the building will once again be open for building tours. Meditation music will be played from 9:30 to 10 a.m., followed by a song service at 10 a.m. The morning service will begin at 10:30 a.m. with Priest Daniel Nixon. The alumni choir will also perform during the service.


Neill said celebrating 20 years is important to the school community because in today’s economic times, it is a challenge for any private school to remain opened. He said Center Place as been “greatly blessed” over the years, and he hopes that continues for many more years to come.


“We prepare our young people academically, spiritually and socially for the next phase of their lives,” he said. “They are not a finished product when they leave here, but they are prepared for the next stage of their life.”


For more information on Center Place Restoration School’s 20th anniversary, contact the school at 816-252-1715.