Horizons Elementary School is the first alternative elementary school in North Carolina. It serves kindergarten through fifth grade students who have not been successful in the classroom, due to their behavior. The goal of the program is to help students make positive choices in behavior and academics for long-term success.
Former Superintendent Dr. Tom McNeel approached the elementary principals with the concept of a school to serve students who were having difficulty in the classroom. A committee was formed with representatives from Caldwell County Schools, Social Services, the Health Department, Juvenile Justice, Foothills Mental Health, and other community agencies. They began meeting in the fall of 2000 to discuss the possibility of providing a variety of needed services to elementary-aged children. When the old Hudson Elementary School building became available, the plan became reality. Ms. Nancy Dowdy was named principal and hired her hand-picked staff. Horizons Elementary School opened its doors in August 2001. Upon Ms. Dowdy's retirement in the summer of 2008, Mr. Gwyn Roop became principal and continued through July 2011. Mrs. Teresa Hartley became principal in 2011 and is the current principal at this time.