Frequently Asked Questions

View our general FAQ, below. For enrollment questions, click here

What grades will the school serve?
Ascent Classical™ Academy charter schools base each school’s opening design on the community demand and facility availability. Ascent Classical Academy of Fort Mill will open to grades K-8 in its first year of operation, adding at least one grade each year until reaching K-12.
Where will the school be located?

Ascent Classical™ Academy of Fort Mill is currently exploring temporary and permanent options near Fort Mill, South Carolina, and will soon announce its location.

Will Ascent Classical™ Academy serve students with special needs?

Yes, our schools serve students with special needs. Direct instruction, the structure and coherence of the Core Knowledge curriculum along with the Riggs phonics program are very effective and the school is likely to be able to support a broader spectrum of special needs. The focus of the school and its Student Services is to provide support and tools to enable all students to be successful in school and life.

Ascent Classical™ Academy will ask applicants if their children have special needs only after they have an accepted seat in the school​. At that time, the school will review any Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) or 504 plans to determine the school’s ability to serve an individual student and ensure they will thrive and be successful. Working within all applicable laws, regulations, and the guidance of its authorizer, ACA’s IEP team will determine students’ needs including the setting in which the school will provide the required services and will communicate this determination to parents as required by law and regulation.

Will the school offer athletics or co-curricular programs?

Ascent Classical™ Academy offers athletics and co-curricular clubs based on student interest. The school will send out an interest form in late Spring 2024 to gauge interest in these activities.

Will Ascent Classical™ Academy offer child care before and after school?

The school intends to offer care before and after school hours. More information will be published on this site and emailed to parents as soon as program details are confirmed.

What is a charter public school?

A charter school is a non-profit, tuition-free, independently operated public school granted greater flexibility in curriculum, staffing, and operations.

Charter schools:

  • Receive state “per-pupil revenue” (PPR) and some local mill levy dollars but do not typically receive funding for capital expenses, which must be paid for from operational funding;
  • Offer seats to children based on random lottery. Charter schools do not select children;
  • Offer a variety of curricula, instructional styles, and sometimes differ in their philosophy toward education. Parents choosing a charter school as an option for their children doesn’t indicate a weakness in district run schools, but a preference for a different approach and focus for their child;
  • Serve students with specials needs;
  • Allow parents a choice in the education of their children! They are not right for everyone.
What is classical education?

The underlying philosophy of a good classical school differs from how most other schools are educated today.

Read our page on classical education and our content-rich curriculum.

What are the core elements of the academic program?

Ascent Classical™ Academy takes a classical, liberal arts approach to educating young people, as described above. Other key elements of the academic program include:

  • Core Knowledge sequence in grades K-8;
  • An explicit phonics approach to literacy, mastery of spelling and proper grammar, as well as good handwriting and cursive;
  • Singapore Math;
  • Highly engaging, direct, teacher-led instruction with increased use of Socratic techniques as students progress through the school;
  • Primary source documents used to the maximum extent possible.
Will Ascent Classical™ Academy require teachers to be licensed?

All Ascent Classical™ Academy teachers will be highly qualified.

Ascent Classical™ Academy will hire the most highly qualified teachers for our classrooms and seek out content experts.

After involved parents, it’s known that highly effective teachers, using an excellent, proven curriculum in the classroom, have the greatest impact on student success. Ascent Classical™ Academy seeks staff with expertise in their content area and the best teachers for each position may or may not be licensed teachers.

Will ACA offer transportation to its students?

As a public charter school, we receive state and federal funding for each student attending our campuses, but the total funding is not equal to district schools. As a result, we cannot offer transportation to students in the first year. We encourage and provide resources to parents to coordinate carpooling efforts and hope to offer afterschool programs, dependent upon interest and facility space.

Will ACA offer an afterschool program?

Ascent Classical Academy plans to offer an afterschool program, dependent upon interest and facility space. The school will survey parents about needs in early summer and share details about the program through email and on the school website.

Does ACA plan to offer lunch to students?

The school is exploring options to provide lunch to its students in the first year and beyond. Though Ascent Classical Academies does not participate in the National School Lunch Program, the school aims to cover the cost of meals and other potential burdens for students who qualify for free and reduced lunch assistance, if available. A decision about the lunch program will be made no later than June 2024.