Three private schools opening in the Valley this school year offer vastly different approaches to education.
Brightmont Academy specializes in offering one-to-one instruction. As an accredited private school it offers the full curriculum for grades 6 through 12 and can award a high school diploma, though students are more likely to take a few classes at Brightmont and receive credit for them at their school of record, according to Teri Citterman, of Brightmont Academy in Seattle.
Students who have special needs, need to retake a class or have missed a lot of school due to illness use the individualized teaching to fulfill school requirements or accelerate their education. Students involved in time-intensive activities — sports, pursuing an acting career — or whose schedules don’t conform to the typical high school calendar year also might take classes at Brightmont.
Beginning Aug. 9, the Brightmont Academy in Deer Valley will host open houses on Thursdays during August. Meet the staff from 6 to 7pm at the school, 2222 W. Pinnacle Peak Road, Suite 110, in Phoenix.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Following publication of this article, Teri Citterman informed us that, in Arizona, the majority of Brightmont students do attend the school full time.
The Open Doors Center in El Mirage focuses on the passions and interests of the student. School founder Terry Samlos realized when she taught elementary school that the creative abilities of students were not being expressed when they were “locked in” by the public school curriculum and how the curriculum was supposed to be taught. Her students did “passion projects” where they chose a topic and researched it themselves. She noticed how happy the students were when they were learning about topics that interested them. This is the basis of Open Door Center, which Damlos expects will eventually be a K-12 school. She is starting this year with 10 to 12 students ages 12 and younger.
The Open Door Center will operate out of a private home this year at 14502 N. 124th Lane in El Mirage. Damlos intends to find a larger space in the future. Three teachers are on staff along with mentors from the community with skills and interests they will teach to the students.
Genys says the Kimber Academy is a very religious school that uses scripture from any faith to give students a strong moral basis and help them be self-directed learners and make moral decisions. Kimber is Mormon, but Genys says the Kimber Academies are not LDS schools. Mormon students can use the book of Mormon in their studies and students of other faiths can use the scriptures of their faith in their studies.
According to a press release, “The Glenn J. Kimber Academy is a private, K-12, faith-based, multi-denominational school” that provides students with “a positive, moral and patriotic environment in which they can learn spiritually as well as academically in all subjects.” Kimber says of his schools, “We are dedicated to educating the generations destined to build Zion, save the constitution and proclaim the truth by building a foundation of knowledge through an educational system that places God and correct principles into every academic subject.”
Glenn J Kimber Academy Mesa is located at 1355 S. Clearview Ave. in Mesa.