What Makes Us Unique

Grand Traverse Academy's Educational Model

Since our inception in 2000, Grand Traverse Academy has experienced steady growth, from a K-6 school of just under 300 students, to an enrollment of nearly 1,000 in Pre K-12. Our impressive student numbers, a highly competent and professional faculty, and a loyal, committed parent group speak to the school’s thriving culture and record of success.

How have we continued to grow and prosper?

We make decisions based on what is best for our students and are committed to providing excellent service to our customers:  our students and their families.  Grand Traverse Academy’s mission is for all students to be safe, loved and learning as they achieve excellence in character and academics. Excellence is defined as being prepared for responsible citizenship and success in higher education.  We accomplish this with the following strategies, based on sound educational research:

  • Character Education. Good character is the foundation for success in life.  At Grand Traverse Academy, character traits such as respect, responsibility, kindness, integrity and work ethic are modeled, taught and graded on a regular basis.

  • Choice Theory. Based on the concept of personal responsibility, Choice Theory instruction helps our students understand themselves, strengthen interpersonal relationships and increase happiness and satisfaction.

  • Foreign Language. Bilingual individuals are better equipped to compete in a global economy, and the earlier children learn a second language, the better.  At Grand Traverse Academy, all students receive Spanish instruction beginning in preschool and continuing through high school.

  • Uniforms. School uniforms help build a sense of community, reduce distractions and increase safety.  At Grand Traverse Academy, both students and staff wear uniforms daily.

  • Multi-Aged Classrooms. Teaching students according to their ability rather than their age allows for individualized instruction and learning goals, better meeting the educational needs of each of our students.

  • High Academic Expectations. A challenging college preparatory curriculum, in which students must earn a “C” or better to pass a course, prepares our students for success at post-secondary institutions.

  • Dual Enrollment. A generous dual enrollment policy, with eligible students taking college courses through Northwestern Michigan College as early as the tenth grade, provides a head start to success in college.