NorthStar Academy (NSA) is a private, online, Christian school that offers students in grades 5-12 a complete academic and diploma-granting program.
NorthStar’s mission is to provide quality academic instruction, resources, and support via the Internet within a Christian-based, diploma-granting, online educational program. The school’s vision is to create an interactive community of online learners. NSA serves Christian schools and home-based learners in a flexible, practical, and personal format. Through the Internet, the instruction comes to the student wherever he/she may live. This type of school environment enables students to remain with their families, supports the home-based learner, and supplements Christian schools by providing courses and instruction in particular subject areas. Ultimately the school’s vision is to equip and train students to make a positive impact with their neighbors and to the world. The school’s expected student outcomes serve as a framework for putting “feet” to the school’s mission and vision.
ONLINE COMMUNITY UNIQUENESS
NorthStar Academy students live in over seventy countries, which varies from year to year. Essentially the school’s community can exist wherever Internet access is available. Though NorthStar Academy is widespread geographically, a strong majority of the school’s community is American or native-English speaking, with many families being involved in mission or NGO work around the world. Over the last four years, NSA has also increased its footprint in the United States both with individual families as well as with small Christian schools. NSA serves over 725 students. Students may enroll at NorthStar Academy for a variety of reasons. Some come for one course, and some enroll full-time, taking six or more credits in one school year. Students are also able to enroll and start at designated times each month during the school year (rolling enrollment). NSA meets the individual needs of each family or school. Because of the ever-changing environment of online schooling, NorthStar Academy remains committed to its purpose of providing families and schools with an alternative choice to public, private, boarding, and/or national day schools. Consistency is maintained in their educational program as they may travel nationally or internationally.
What is NorthStar Academy?
Growth & Choices: NSA began offering courses for grades 7-11 in 1998 with 32 students. NSA has since grown to offering nearly 200 core and elective courses, including 18 Advanced Placement© courses, to over 725 students in grades 5-12. A Pre-AP/Honors track was launched in 2012, and dual credit college courses were initially offered in 2010. Amidst changes and growth, NSA has built on its heritage and remains one of, if not the first, online Christian school in existence.
Diploma Options: NSA students may choose to earn a Standard or Advanced Diploma. NSA also offers required courses for a student to earn the AP International Diploma.
Course Options: NSA offers courses in core subject areas such as PE and health, language arts, social studies, science, and math. Elective courses are available in areas of fine arts, foreign languages, physical education and health, computers and electronics, ESL, and college, Christian foundations and worldview, and career preparation.
Advanced Course Options: NSA offers Advanced Placement© courses for Computer Science, Calculus, Biology, Chemistry, World History, US History, European History, Microeconomics, Literature & Composition, and more.
Curriculum Quality: Most of NSA’s curriculum is written “in house” by curriculum and subject area experts. Course objectives and content are based on international and national curriculum standards that reflect the school's mission, purpose, vision, and expected student outcomes. Specific materials and resources are utilized from a variety of publishers to meet the curricular needs of each course. The integration of the Biblical worldview is intentionally included in lessons, activities, and materials for students. In order to maintain high standards, NorthStar Academy operates on a formal curricular review cycle, whereby all subject areas are regularly reviewed, evaluated, and changed or improved as needed.
NSA is accredited by AdvancEd through the regional office of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS-CASI). NSA has maintained accreditation standards since November 2005, and it was the first online Christian school to receive accreditation. NorthStar Academy's CEEB code number is 252825.
3790 Goodman Road East
Southaven, Mississippi, 38672 USA
Tel: 1.662.892.4380 Fax: 1.662.892.4320
Key Indicators: The administration and teachers at NSA are committed to continuous school improvement efforts in the following areas:
- New Look – NSA will continue to formally rebrand itself to better meet the needs of current families and be in a position to attract new families.
- New Standards – NSA will continue to adopt higher levels of standards while being strongly committed to its mission and vision.
- New Offerings – NSA will continue to intentionally increase its course offerings and options for families and schools to enroll.
- Data Collection, Analysis, and Communication – NSA will continue to intentionally work through the process of formally collecting, tracking, analyzing, and communicating data as it strives to make deeper levels of data-driven decisions.
- Teacher Collaboration & Professional Development – NSA will continue to intentionally increase its opportunities and tools for the collaboration of teachers and their professional development to benefit student learning.
- Addition of Services – NSA will continue to investigate additional services that will benefit both current and prospective families and schools.
Grading Scale & School Calendar: NorthStar Academy has the following grading system within a 36-week school calendar which consists of two 18-week semesters. NSA students may start any month of the year with official start dates being available each month. Students are provided up to 52 weeks to complete yearlong courses, and 26 weeks to complete semester courses.
F: 59 or below
Completion rates: NSA has experienced student completion rates at a 70% rate or higher, depending on the school year and course examined as compared to the completion rates of print-based correspondence distance education programs at around 40%.
Student Awards: NSA students have earned the National Merit Scholarship and other significant financial scholarships while also earning placement in the Who’s Who Among American High School Students and placement in the National Honor Roll and Society.
ACT/SAT/Advanced Placement Scores: Of reported scores NSA students have shown a significantly high success rate on these tests. However, this is difficult to measure due to the a-la-carte nature of online schools and the corporate maturity of the College Board processes with online schools.
Post Secondary Choices of Students: Based on historical information reported, 75% of NSA students go on to 4-year universities while 10% go on to 2-year colleges, 10% are undecided, and 5% choose “other” options (e.g., military, vocational schools, etc.).
College/University Admissions: Higher education institutions that have accepted NSA graduates, include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Anderson College
- Auburn University
- Bethel College, Minnesota
- Calvin College
- Carthage College
- Catawba College
- Cedarville University
- Charleston Southern University
- Colorado State University
- Dallas Baptist University
- Dartmouth College
- Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
- Erskine College
- George Fox University
- Goucher College
- Kawartha Lakes Bible College (Canada)
- LeTourneau University
- Liberty University
- McDaniel College
- Meredith College
- Moody Bible College
- Moorhead State University
- North Carolina State University
- Northwest Christian College
- Northwestern College
- Ouachita Baptist University
- Patrick Henry College
- Pennsylvania State University
- Pensacola Christian College
- Queens University of Charlotte
- Seattle Pacific University
- Simpson University
- St. Andrews Presbyterian College
- Taylor University
- Union University
- University of Arkansas
- University of Connecticut
- University of Delaware
- University of Florida
- University of Maryland
- University of Mobile
- University of New Orleans
- University of Oklahoma
- University of Rhode Island
- University of Tennessee
- University of Wisconsin- Eau Claire
- US Air Force Academy
- US Military Academy at West Point
- US Naval Academy (nomination to)
- Western Carolina University
- Wheaton College
- Wilson College