FreedomProject Academy, an affiliate of The New American magazine, provides an educational alternative to public schools, emphasizing what we can learn from history.
For parents looking for an alternative to public schools, The New American’s top recommendation is FreedomProject Academy, an affiliate of TNA. At FreedomProject Academy, our abiding mission is to change the culture and restore the nation through classical education, imparting a Judeo-Christian worldview to our students and preparing the next generation of patriot leaders, equipping them to promote, defend, and advance the causes of liberty and civic responsibility across America.
Classical education entails reading the great books of the last 2,500 years of Western culture and studying the past to learn how it formulated our culture and led to our laws, freedom, and prosperity. The purpose of a classical education is to train the mind to approach all subjects rationally and judiciously, and to recognize the value of reason, not as the only way of arriving at truth, but as one part of a complex human organism that includes body and soul, each of which has its own contributions to make in the development of the person.
We reject the contemporary idea that reason alone is sufficient for human progress and fulfillment. If that were true, courses in mathematics and science might constitute the entire curriculum. Rather, we believe that subjects such as Latin and logic — as well as course work in the Bible, economics, and the humanities — contribute to forming the well-rounded individual, conversant in a wide variety of areas and able to properly distinguish those disciplines fit for the mind, those fit for the soul, and those fit for the body, and how to integrate them. In other words, one important aim of classical education is to educate a generation of young men and women who are able to balance the practical demands of the material world with the ethical requirements of right living and moral development.
Founded in 2011, FreedomProject Academy strives to provide high-quality educational opportunities for families seeking relief from the low expectations, mindless testing, and ideological spin of traditional public schools. FreedomProject offers a fully accredited online classical school for students from kindergarten through high school. FPA offers online classes in real time, with teacher-and-student interaction, not simply recorded lessons. We have students in all 50 states and 10 foreign countries, and our program has become a welcome option for missionaries and the families of military personnel stationed overseas.
We currently have close to 300 students on track to receive diplomas — our highest number ever — reflecting 35-percent growth from one year ago. These classically educated young people have enrolled in colleges and universities, accepted internships, and entered the workforce. They are prepared to compete at a very high level, bolstered by an education big on civics, economics, writing, and math. For each of the last six years, new student enrollments grew significantly. More parents are entrusting their students to us at younger ages, and as a result these kids are much more likely to remain with FPA for the long haul.
As part of our broader educational outreach, FPA offers free placement exams in math and writing — whether families decide to use our program or not. We find that students who come to us from the public schools are on average two years behind where they should be for their grade level. With every passing year, public-school kids lag further behind FPA students. We test many more students every year than actually enroll with us, as some families do not choose FPA as the immediate answer.
FPA also produces original media and scholastic materials that have been accessed by millions of students. Our live programming, educational media, and short weekly videos focus on topics impacting education and the welfare of our nation. For the third consecutive year, we were voted the Top Online School Website by Homeschool.com, a tremendous honor that spotlights our stellar media crew. Our expanding media footprint and positive reviews have made FPA a national brand.
FPA’s reputation as a national leader in online K-12 education has provided a platform from which to offer national leadership in the fight against the Common Core standards and the federalization of education. To date, FPA has delivered over 700 anti-Common Core talks in 46 states and has participated in more than 3,000 radio, TV, and Skype interviews, reaching more than 10 million listeners over the last seven years. FPA’s efforts to reform American education have been acknowledged in numerous national media outlets, from Fox News to Conservative Review to Glenn Beck’s TheBlaze television network.
FPA also partners with private schools, homeschooling co-ops, and churches, beaming our teachers and curriculum into their local communities. This allows for the rapid expansion of faith-based schools across the nation, as FPA provides all class instruction, assignments, tests, and grading needed to help schools stay on budget. What better way to restore American values than to bring the worlds of faith and education together again? Our partnership program makes it possible for every church facility in the country to host its own school, allowing clergy members and pastors to incorporate Bible study into the day’s academic lessons.
For those parents who are reluctant to homeschool their children because they feel educationally inadequate, especially in unfamiliar or advanced subjects, FPA might be their answer.
Since the implementation of Common Core meant the removal of most non-Common Core textbooks from the marketplace, in order to push back against the (illegal) federalization of education and the implementation of Common Core, FPA is in the process of creating its own proprietary textbooks. Our educational textbooks will be derived from the most historically important written works and the proven best educational practices, including phonics, traditional math, grammar, and writing; and they will emphasize critical thinking — not politically correct propaganda and the latest ideological spin. The first textbooks to be produced in-house will be traditional, common-sense K-12 math books, which will be available for families across the country within a few years. Following the creation of our math textbooks, ones for English and history will come in short order. (Until our books are ready, we will be using handouts created in-house and time-tested textbooks, texts that are presently being phased out by book companies in favor of Common Core-aligned materials.)
So far parents have approved of our efforts. The calls and e-mails from satisfied parents attest not just to the quality of our program, but also to the success of our push to bring about character development and moral improvement. FPA kids are economically literate and are schooled in the Constitution and founding documents. We are helping parents to create morally responsible, civic-minded thinkers, and we’re doing it without the help of government.
FreedomProject Academy strives to empower parents, protect children, and preserve and strengthen our Constitutional Republic. To learn more, visit the website at FPEUSA.org.
Photo at top: FreedomProject Academy
Dr. Duke Pesta is academic director at FreedomProject Academy, a classical school that offers online classes in real time for kindergarten through high school.
This article originally appeared in The New American's February 4, 2019 special report on education. (To order, click on the ad above.) The New American publishes a print magazine twice a month, covering issues such as politics, money, foreign policy, environment, culture, and technology. To subscribe, click here.
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