Faith-based L.E.A.D. Academy hosting Huckabee to help fundraise for expansion

Northwest Florida

PACE, Fla. (WKRG) — After nearly seven years of growth in Pace, the L.E.A.D. Academy is looking to grow some more.

The faith-based private school in Pace has grown from teaching just 24 students its first year to more than 400 students enrolled today.

The school has expanded from its Berryhill Road campus, which now holds its K-4 and K-5 students, to its current three-building Joppa Road campus off Chumuckla Highway. It serves students from first to twelfth grade.

The school has plans to expand the campus even more to include a gym, a cafetorium, a music room, art room and science lab, its head administrator and founder Frank Lay said. This is Phase II of its Joppa campus expansion. But in order to expand, it will take more funding.

“Phase II is where we are going to build a grand hall … where we can bring kids in and do some enrichment activities with them,” Lay said. “We’re looking for support from our constituents, our community, for those people who come alongside us and say, “Hey, let’s build that.’”

To help gain some support, the L.E.A.D Academy will host Governor Mike Huckabee at Olive Baptist Church Feb. 8 from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. Funds raised from the dinner will help go toward the seed money to build the new facilities.

“We’re asking him to lead the way we ‘raise the roof,” Lay said. “That’s our theme. That’s our motto as we raise the roof on this next project.”

In an interview News 5, Lay pointed out the school’s need for a gym, a music room, and an art room, among other extracurricular activities, because it helps round out a child’s education.

Tickets to the Huckabee dinner start and main event start at $100. General admission tickets to the main event cost $40.

There are also several sponsorship levels that come with several perks. Go to for more information.


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