Monroe Academy will partner with Rock Springs Christian Academy in Lamar County for the 2009-10 school year as it phases out its elementary school. Elementary school students will be offered the opportunity to attend Rock Springs for K-5 through fifth grade then transfer back to MA for their middle and high school education.’Current economic times compounded with an already stressed financial condition forced the board of directors to make the change,’ said MA head of school Martha Krepps. ‘Rock Springs stepped up as a partner and will add a fifth grade class.’Dr. Benny Tate, pastor of Rock Springs Church and chancellor of its school, said the fifth grade class will be put in place only if there are enough students. Right now, MA has 79 elementary students who could be added to the Rock Springs roster, ‘but that’s a decision for the parents.’Rock Springs has about 120 students.’I’m excited about the partnership and believe this will ensure the continued existence of both schools,’ he said. ‘We’ll be a feeder school, recommending Monroe for sixth through 12th grades.’Monroe has some 116 students in middle and high school; classes will remain open for them. Dr. Tate became chaplain at MA after it switched to a faith-based curriculum last year. His daughter is a sophomore there.’She loves the school with all her heart and is excited about going back next year,’ he said. ‘I’ve enjoyed the relationship with them.’Monroe, founded in 1966 in Forsyth, has offered pre-kindergarten through college prep for 43 years. Rock Springs has been in existence several years.