4175 North Kingshighway,
St. Louis, MO 63115
All students need what City Academy students have—an excellent education that their families can afford.
Located in an area of St. Louis that consistently ranks the highest in need for performing schools, City Academy offers students from early childhood through the sixth grade an enviable program that rivals most of its costly private, independent counterparts.
“When it comes to something as critical as education, affordability and excellence should not be mutually exclusive,” says President and Co-Founder Don Danforth III. “We’re committed to ensuring that our students have the best-possible learning environment—one that’s not only innovative and challenging, but also inspiring and full of possibility.”
Students enrolled in City Academy are taught every subject by an expert at every grade level. They take Suzuki violin, read and analyze classic literature, approach math concepts through Montessori and Singapore Math methods, learn science with hands-on experiments, and are encouraged to choose from a variety of high-quality afterschool activities like dance and Shakespeare and robotics.
Sounds costly, doesn’t it? At most schools, a program like this would be too expensive. Many families would not even allow themselves to consider it. But City Academy has created a solution that keeps the doors open and the opportunities within reach.
Since opening in 1999, City Academy has provided substantial scholarship support for 100% of its students, something no other private, independent elementary school in St. Louis or Missouri does. All families pay some tuition, based on need, but the remainder is covered with support from endowment, generous individuals, corporations and foundations.
“Many of the barriers to high-quality education have been removed because of the generous support from the broader community,” says Danforth. “It is exciting to think about the lives that have been changed, and that will continue to change because so many people share our belief that every child needs an opportunity to achieve.”
Never quite satisfied
Being part of the City Academy community requires an investment for everyone involved---students, families and teachers alike.
In addition to paying some tuition, all families must dedicate twenty hours of volunteer service to the school each year, although many exceed this requirement.
“Our families understand that they must take an active role in helping their children have a successful experience here,” says Principal Kelly Tyson. “But we also work very hard to make sure our parents know they can come to us for support. We are truly vested in providing families the resources they need—everything from parent support seminars to help with placement after graduation.”
Tyson says that ongoing evaluation and a never-wavering desire to keep expectations high is what keeps the learning environment at City Academy fresh.
“Change for the better is just part of the routine at City Academy,” says Tyson. “As an independent school, we have the liberty to innovate and refine our approach to learning until we are satisfied. The key is to never be satisfied."
City Academy from Ginger Imster on Vimeo.