Acton Academy is a 21st century solution for the epidemic of mediocrity and apathy that plagues young people in traditional school. It’s an innovative approach to education that celebrates personal responsibility, creative freedom, and the pursuit of one’s life purpose.

With 250+ worldwide campuses, our Learner-Driven community believes every child is a Hero who deserves to find a calling that will change the world. Bound by extremely high standards of excellence and lifelong learning, this is where great adventures begin.

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Our story may be

your story too!

We're Joe, Emily, Katelyn and Michael and we’ve decided to do school “differently” for our children and other children in our community!  

21st century

Learning Design

through deliberate practice and the latest educational technology

Self-paced mastery of reading, writing and math skills

through written promises and commitments that form a tightly bound peer-led community 

Authentic relationships

through hands-on project-based quests that promote curiosity and problem solving. 

real world tools and skills

through deep socratic discussions about history, heroes, and self governance

critical thinking and powerful writing + speaking

Acton Academy is “student led.” This means young people take ownership of their education and peer relationships. Acton students learn to think independently, take responsibility and embrace challenge. At Acton Academy, we call our classrooms "studios" because students are learning through movement, exploration and hands-on activities. Studios replace traditional classrooms and create a space for students of varying ages to learn together. They are being prepared to bring their own unique genius to the world.

What makes acton Different from other schools?

Student led multi-age studios

LEARN together

We believe the learning experience is much richer when the Guide offers insightful questions and facilitates hands-on learning. Guides use the Socratic method, always responding to students questions with new questions. This exchange hones students critical thinking skills. No boring sit in your desk teacher-led lecture-style learning at Acton, we believe students learn by doing. Whether it’s launching a startup business, creating a tide-pool habitat, playing a musical instrument, painting a mosaic, or programming a robot, Acton students are building real-life skills in the studio every day.

Hands-on learning

learn by doing

We encourage our students to develop personal virtues such as honesty, hard work, responsibility, kindness and empathy. Armed with purpose and good character, we believe our students will launch into adulthood prepared to find their calling and change the world. Acton uses the latest technology in a self-paced learning environment that is designed to foster responsibility, goal-setting and teamwork. Acton students are empowered to thrive in a world that needs independent, motivated thinkers and learners.

discover passions, find callings

learn to be

A DAY IN THE LIFE

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      Acton Academy West End is part of the network of over 250+ Acton Academies around the world. We follow the same exact Learning Design (curriculum) and learning model that Jeff and Laura Sandefer helped create at the original Acton Academy campus over a decade ago.

      How is Acton Academy West End affiliated with Acton Academy?

      For the founding 2022-2023 year, we are enrolling young people ages 5 (kindergarten) through 7 (2nd grade). As the founding group matures we will grow into additional studios for older learners. 

      What grades do you offer?

      We believe that children learn best when working with children younger and older than themselves rather than split up into groups based solely on age. In addition to individualized curriculum, all ages of students work together in groups.

      Will children be grouped together by grades?

      Tuition is $850 per month for 9 months or $7,650 per year. There is a $100 (non-refundable application fee). First month's tuition ($850) is due upon acceptance to hold the spot for your learner. There is an $850 annual supply fee due by June 1st. 

      What is your tuition cost?

      Students who love to learn, are curious, self-motivated, and respectful. Our environment is an accelerator for the independent learner who can tackle challenging questions, follow instructions and solve problems.

      What kind of learner thrives at Acton Academy West End?

      We respect and incorporate Maria Montessori’s philosophy, but we are not a Montessori school. We also use the latest interactive technologies, hands-on projects and the Socratic Method for discussions.

      Is Acton Academy West End a Montessori school?

      Each family is unique, though there are some similarities we’ve seen between the families who are happiest and most successful in this model. We encourage families to be intentional about their decision to apply! Please read “Courage to Grow” by Laura Sandefer, and reach out to us to schedule a time to meet.

      How do I know if it‘s the right fit for us?

      There are limited scholarship opportunities in our founding year. If you are interested in a scholarship, please let us know in your application. If you would like to contribute to the scholarship fund, please let us know. We are eager to share this opportunity with as many highly qualified applicants as possible.

      Do you offer scholarships?

      We take our commitment seriously when we promise to deliver a transformative education experience for young people at Acton Academy West End. Since we are a small school, we make sure that we have the resources necessary to keep this promise for each family that joins us. Currently we have resources to assist young people who experience mild ADD/ADHD, dyslexia, and some minor forms of autism. We are not currently equipped to serve young people with other specific learning needs. Any child who needs significant 1-on-1 adult help or attention, would not be a good fit because it works against the whole effort to “get adults out of the equation as much as possible” to be learner-driven.

      What resources do you have for special learning needs?

      Yes the school is accredited through the International Association of Learner Driven Schools.

      Is Acton Academy West End accredited?

      At Acton Academy West End we believe in the power of balance. Using the incredible, self-paced eLearning tools now available, we are able to provide the rigor needed for learning math, vocabulary, spelling and grammar in about 90 minutes each day, while freeing up the rest of the day for engaging, project-based learning. The two are highly complementary.  

      How do you use technology in the classroom without students having too much screen time?

      Acton Academy West End is located in Richmond, VA. Just 10 minutes west of Short Pump on Broad Street. Email us for additional details about the location. 

      Where are you located?

      Acton Academy West End revolves around the basic truths of Christianity: the belief that humans are designed to be the hands and feet of God in the world, using their gifts to the best of their abilities. Because Acton encourages exploration and independent learning, however, we leave the teaching of specific doctrine up to individual families. Children and families of all faiths are welcome at Acton Academy West End.

      Is Acton a religious school?

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