What age range do you accept at Thrive Academy?

We are currently accepting learners ages 6 through 10 for our Elementary Studio: Discovery. We plan to open a Middle School Studio: Passages for learners aged 11 to 13 very soon. Eventually, we will also offer a Spark Studio for learners between the ages of 4 and 6 and a Launchpad for learners between the ages of 14 and 18.

What do you mean by a Hero’s Journey?

We believe that each of us has a special calling in life, and a series of trials and tests that must be faced with integrity and purpose, in order to live a satisfying and fulfilled life. Our mission is to prepare your child for his or her special journey.

What do you mean by “Every child can change the world?”

We believe each of our students will find a passion — something they love and have a gift to do. They will use this gift to serve others and fulfill a need they are passionate about in the world. This may be by becoming a shoe-shiner who tells stories and makes people's day just by doing his job with love and vigor; it may be by becoming a coach who sees the light in a child’s eyes and guides her to pursue a dream; it may be by becoming a father or mother who leads a family on a Hero's Journey; it may be becoming an entrepreneur or business leader guided by compassion and integrity; or it may be by becoming an artist or writer who brings beauty to people's lives.

What is the school calendar and what does Thrive Academy cost?

Thrive Academy runs from August through to July. The annual rhythm consists of seven 3-7 week sprints (each of which deals with an overarching question and a single Quest and wraps up with a public exhibition). Tuition is $14,900 a year.

Is Thrive Academy Accredited?

We are accredited by the International Association of Learner-Driven Schools. Also, Acton courses and schools are approved by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA).

Do you serve special needs students?

We are not trained or staffed to serve children with serious learning disabilities, special needs, or those who require intensive supports and specialized attention. If you are interested in Thrive Academy and believe it is a great fit for your family, please inquire and we will personally assess your unique situation and whether or not we would be a good fit for your learner.

How do you ensure students are learning and growing?

We measure student progress in several different ways:

  1. Learners set daily, weekly, and session goals. The learner tracks his or her progress in relation to the goals and the learning community provides support and affirmation.

  2. We utilize robust real-time data for each of our online learning tools. At any given time learners, parents and guides can determine what a given learner is engaging and how they are faring. Technology enables us to monitor how each learner is faring and ensure that no one is passed on until mastery has been achieved.

  3. We utilize individual portfolios where each student showcases their best work.

  4. Though we never “teach to the test,” standardized tests given each Fall & Spring provide useful benchmark data.

How will Thrive Academy prepare my child for traditional high school or college?

Thrive Academy will prepare your child to be successful at life and achieve at high levels, whether her journey takes her to college, a start-up or an artists’ colony. Learners discover strengths and interests, and engage real world problems, while developing independence, creativity, problem-solving skills, leadership, resilience, emotional intelligence, and a wealth of other abilities, in addition to mastering core academic skills.

These are the very competencies that many employers are clamoring for and which collegiate success requires. Unfortunately, many college admissions processes are currently not sophisticated enough to fully account for these sorts of abilities as they often remain overly reliant on limited criterion and stunted measures, but every college we are familiar with would love to enroll the type of learners that Thrive Academy fosters.

How do students perform on standardized tests?

On average, Acton Academies throughout the country are finding that Acton students are progressing ~2 grade levels above other students their age.

What kind of learner is Thrive ideally suited to?

Students who love to learn, are curious, self-motivated and respectful. Children who are inclined to a “growth mindset,” and understand that ability is developed through hard work, not bestowed at birth. Our learning design prepares independent learners who are willing to independently tackle challenging questions, follow instructions and solve problems.

Is Thrive Academy like Montessori?

Thrive Academy borrows from many of Montessori’s main methods: mixed-age classrooms, student choice within limits, large blocks of work time, learning through “discovery,” and freedom of movement in the classroom. Then we go three important steps further by using the best 21st century e-Learning tools, immersing learners in real-world projects, and adhering to the Socratic method of instruction, which emphasizes asking and answering questions to cultivate critical thinking. Our learners don’t just memorize facts; they learn how to learn, learn how to do, and learn how to be.

Are you part of a chain or franchise?

We are not a franchise or chain. Thrive Academy is an independent school, part of an affiliate network that finds its inspiration and receives mentorship from the founding Acton Academy in Austin, Texas. Our network of affiliates is passionate about revolutionizing education and pursuing best practices. They have agreed to protect a learner-driven environment. Each affiliate follows their own methods in keeping with these commitments and vary based on the leadership at each school and community they serve.