Empower. Navigate. Elevate.
K-8 Academy for Autistic and
Managing a child with autism or other neurodivergent conditions can be a challenge, so when it came time to put our son into school we knew there would be hurdles. Our local elementary school was highly rated and we quickly fell in love with the teachers, administration, and convenient location.
The public school provided every resource they could for our son and sincerely wanted to help him succeed. But the challenge was that this school, and its curriculum, was designed for typical kids. No matter how hard our son worked or how much help he received, his measurement and perception of success was overshadowed by the progression of peers around him. He was having success at a rate that was great for him, but in contrast to his classmates it seemed as if he was failing.
Next, we tried home-schooling which was amazing, frustrating, rewarding, and exhausting all at the same time. Autistic children really do require a village of specialists, therapists, and educators, and I did my best to provide him tutors and therapists to meet his needs. But managing the schedules across so many disciplines became complicated and extremely expensive. Recreating the support system provided in school was just not feasible, and although I love working with my son, trying to wear all of those different hats on my own did not work out to his favor or mine. Combine that with missed opportunities for socialization and we knew we needed to find a more specialized school for our son.
We tried a number of private schools that we thought might be a good match. We were excited our son was having good peer interactions with children more like him, but other issues arose. Some were reluctant or unable to change or adopt different teaching methods to better suit his needs, others did not have added resources for speech, ABA, or other therapies. And some that appeared to have everything we needed unfortunately had no more room for our son. So we were left with the decision to either continue home-schooling while we waited for an opening in a preferred school, place him in a school that was still not meeting his needs…. or start our own school.
That’s when Polaris Academy was born. Schooling for autistic children shouldn’t be a challenge, it should be an opportunity. So our task was to create a school where neurodivergent children could relate, socialize, and thrive in an environment physically designed for focused learning, academically designed to be flexible and promote out-of-the box thinking, and filled with professionals driven by a passion for our students instead of mandated goals and standards. Our vision was fortunately shared by our founding group and with their collective efforts our dream has now become a reality. We are so excited to share what we have learned, developed and created with you and your children and hope you will let us be a part of your amazing journey.
Polaris is the brightest star within the Little Dipper constellation, also called Ursa Minor meaning "the Little Bear" thus our mascot - "Bears". It is known as the North Star, or Pole Star, because of its stable and fixed position in the northern sky.
Used throughout history for navigation, Polaris has shined as a constant and reliable light for those sailing the seas, traversing barren deserts, and charting a course through the unknown. As a symbol, Polaris is used in poetry to represent steadfastness, a guiding principle, a constant guide, and is often associated with direction and purpose. Though appearing to the naked eye as a single point of light, Polaris is actually a triple star system combining the light of three stars to shine brightly in the night.
We couldn't select a better symbol for our school. Our hope, our vision, is for Polaris Academy to be a stable and reliable resource for parents and children, helping to chart and navigate through life's journey towards a more purposeful, independent, and fulfilling future. Polaris Academy stands as a symbol of steadfastness in learning, a constant guide for education and growth. And by combining the experience of our professionals, resources of our community, and unique talents and strengths of our students and parents, Polaris Academy will shine brightly and light a path of success, joy, and confidence for all our little, bright "stars".
Our vision is for Polaris Academy to be a foundational education and life resource upon which children, parents, and the community can build a better future for those with autism and other neurodiversity conditions.
We will educate and empower: i) our students to discover and act upon their diverse potential, ii) our parents to engage as trusted partners, iii) our professionals with adaptive tools to manage and accomplish social, academic, and behavioral goals, and iv) our community on the unique talents, strengths and opportunities our students can contribute socially, professionally, and beyond.
Polaris Academy will become more than a school, it will grow to become a living community of students, parents, and professionals working together to craft a culture of unity, belonging, discovery, and self-worth.
Our mission for Polaris Academy is to EMPOWER parents and students by creating academic and social resources to NAVIGATE autistic and other neurodivergent children towards a more purposeful, independent, and fulfilling future.
Our flexible education model combines grade level standards with individualized and comprehensive goals to promote student strengths, acknowledge student limitations, and ELEVATE each child to reach their full potential. By combining the experience of our school professionals, the dedication and unique talents of parents and children, and the resources of our community, Polaris Academy will propel its students on a path to greater joy, confidence, and achievement.
The Polaris Difference
Integrated Therapy Teaching Model
On staff BCBA, Speech, and Occupational Therapists work together to collaborate with instructors, parents, and other providers to develop and teach individually tailored education plans centered centered on academic goals aimed at enhancing, fostering, and building critical learning and communication skills for maximum student growth and success.
Unique Autism/Sensory School Design
Polaris Academy has been designed and remodeled using newly developed architectural standards and studies aimed at minimizing sensory stimuli while promoting a more focused and comforting learning environment shown to optimize academic growth in autistic and sensory challenged students.
HOW TO RECEIVE FREE TUITION
Most parents will have little to no out-of-pocket expenses to attend Polaris Academy. This is accomplished by utilizing Empowerment Scholarship Accounts (ESAs), through Scholarship from Tuition Organizations (STOs) and through private organizations.
Interested in learning more about Polaris Academy?
Get in touch with us today with any questions or to reserve your child's place for enrollment when it begins on
January 8, 2024