COLLEGEVILLE -- St. John's Prep will be adding another grade level to their school starting this fall.

The school will be adding 5th grade to their middle school as part of a new pilot program.

Headmaster Fr. Jonathan Licari says the discussion about adding another grade level came about two years ago when they were updating their comprehensive plan.

During the course of the last year or so, we've been looking at all the opportunities. Would it benefit our families, catholic and benedictine education in this area and we've found it's a great possibility for us.

The new pilot program will integrate grades 5th and 6th to expand opportunities for students to develop strong writing skills, language basics, fine arts and more.

Licari says the additional grade level is a natural progression as the school grows, and will be re-evaluated in the summer of 2020.

We're going to give it at least one year, possibility two, to see if it's really going to work for us and for the area.

Licari says they currently have several families with students already enrolled in St. John's Prep interested in the 5th grade program.

Specific curriculum details will come out early next month. If you would like to learn more about the new grade level, the school is holding a Discovery Day on January 21st.

St. John's Prep currently has 255 students enrolled in grades 6th through 12th.