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The Future of School

Coloring outside the lines at a nature preserve

Nestled on 33 acres of green space at the Blue Heron Nature Preserve, lies what has been called “one of the most innovative and important” learning experiences in the world. Local veteran educators, Andrew and Isa Shahan, were looking for a “school” for their kids that approached learning as a broader set of experiences than traditional/conventional school offers.  “We wanted these experiences to facilitate the development of skills, habits, character traits, relationships, knowledge and expertise necessary for success – and even joy – in the world.”  When they couldn't find what they wanted, they decided to open Acton Academy Buckhead.  

Using Socratic guiding and experiential learning, Acton Academy Buckhead supports young people to embrace challenges, discover their talents and love learning! “It is about changing their relationship with learning.” Having been a principal in traditional public schools, Andrew saw firsthand how young people were forming an adversarial relationship with learning while playing the “school” game. “Acton Buckhead puts the learner and their dreams in the middle and surrounds them with a supportive community with great expectations. Everyone here knows we are surrounded by geniuses!” Andrew shared.  

Acton Academy Buckhead utilizes a blend of state-of-the-art learning software, real-world projects, Socratic discussions and a Hero’s Journey dialogue in student-driven, multi-age learning studios.  Guides create and facilitate the learning environment, but empower young people to take ownership of their individual learning paths and collective studio governance.

One parent recently shared, “We have seen firsthand how powerful our child feels when they own their ability to learn and are not dependent on another person to “teach” them. They have the self-confidence and tools to learn anything.”  Whether it is algebra, starting a business or planning a Valentine's Day party- these learners are prepared for anything.