• What makes capitol Learning Academy Different?

Capitol Learning Academy is D.C.'s most progressive approach to learning, to date. It is a fully child-centered, technology embracing, problem-based learning environment that was created for today's children and is paced by their own interests and abilities. There are no bells or hourly schedule to follow, no assigned homework and no teaching to standardized tests. Students work in multi-age learning environments, without grade-level assignments, and pace their own work, learning objectives and skills acquisition with help from teacher facilitators. 

  • What grade levels are served through capitol learning academy?

While CLA does not have standard grade-levels, students will work in multi-age groups with their peers who can complement, stretch or challenge their knowledge and skills acquisition. CLA serves students aged 4-12, with students typically progressing through learning groups A, B, C then D. In our opening year, we will begin with students aged 6-9 and grow out in both directions from there, to achieve a 4 to 12-year-old population over a five year period. 

  • Will students at CLA be grouped by grade level?

We believe that children learn best when working with children younger and older than themselves. In addition to independent work time, all ages of students will work together in small and large groups.

  • how much homework is assigned?

We believe that students work hard to challenge their beliefs, knowledge and skills throughout the course of the day at Capitol Learning Academy, and therefore the time outside of school should be left open for families to design as they choose. Homework is not assigned at CLA. 

  • What does a typical day at Capitol Learning Academy look like?

There is no typical school day! That being said, each day will begin with a discussion of a “big question” to launch the day’s learning, and end with student-led discussions of the answers they determined. There will be daily independent and small group foundational skills work (math, reading, writing), real-world group project work time (starting a business, publishing a virtual reality augmented book, building solar panels), and P.E., art, music or other enrichment class. 

  • What is a “future focused” school?

We believe that it is the responsibility of today’s schools to prepare students for the unknown future. This includes preparing them for the possible jobs, skills and technology that they will need in order to be competitive with peers from around the world. To achieve this, we must focus on how we best prepare students to adapt to the unknown, how to deal with fast-paced changes, and how to recognize the most efficient and effective routes they can take to learn new skills as they become necessary to a project. 

  • What is an independent learner?

An independent learner can follow instructions, research questions, solve problems, participate in discussions, and strive for mastery. Perhaps most importantly, an independent learner can figure out a solution to a roadblock without asking an adult for help.

  • How will my child stay on task in a self-directed environment?

A student’s ability to set and track goals in order to evaluate progress is essential to success in a student-driven, individualized learning program. Students need a lot of practice setting specific, measurable goals that are challenging but realistic.

CLA students set weekly and daily goals, track progress, and establish a rhythm of meeting with peers to hold each other accountable. In addition, students will develop an agreement with their peers and teacher facilitators to set boundaries for acceptable behavior and rules for engagement in the classroom.

We believe that learning to set goals and challenging yourself are critical skill for the real world.

  • How does Capitol Learning Academy track progress without grades?

We track progress through student portfolios (digital and physical content), learning presentations, self-reviews, goal-setting conferences with parents and teacher-facilitators, online program dashboards, and progress monitoring along CLA Learning Continuums.

  • What is indexed tuition?

Our goal is to make Capitol Learning Academy an affordable option to any family in DC that wishes to attend. Tuition will be determined according to each family's individual circumstances. We will utilize information such as annual household income, assets and number to children to determine a tuition rate unique to each family that applies. This creates an "indexed tuition," recognizing each family's differing ability to contribute as valued and committed members of the CLA community.

Tuition will range between $2,000 and $20,000 per family, per year.

  • Does every family applying to CLA need to apply for indexed tuition?

No, families may choose to opt out of the indexed tuition model, and the forms that it requires. If a families opts out, they will be charged the maximum tuition amount per year ($20,000 in 2019-20).

  • Will applying for indexed tuition hurt my chances of being admitted?

Not at all! We expect most, if not all, of our families will utilize the indexed tuition model. Our explicit goal is to have a very intentionally diverse learning space, with a balance of socioeconomic backgrounds.