About Us

"The teachers that teach at Paideia are so dedicated to the students. Whenever you need help, there's always a teacher there."

-8th grade student 2012-2013

Paideia (PIE-day-uh) Academy was founded in 2005 by a group of parents dedicated to creating a school focused on student-centered learning and the conscious pursuit of each child’s intellectual, artistic, and social education.  Originally serving Kindergarten through fourth grade, Paideia phased in an Upper Academy over the next three years and graduated our first eighth grade class in 2009.  During the 2011-2012 school year, we were fully enrolled with 396 students.


Our school was created to:

  • Provide an innovative, quality educational program for students, using a combination of the Core Knowledge Sequence and a classical curriculum that sets high but attainable standards
  • Ensure that each student has the fundamental skills and knowledge to form a strong foundation for higher education and instill a desire for lifelong learning
  • Establish art and music as core subjects
  • Provide K-8 students with language instruction in Spanish and provide students in grades 5-8 instruction in classical languages
  • Establish a learning community of students, teachers, and parents that models and encourages positive character development, respect for diversity, and a sense of responsibility toward society
  • Address family and student issues related to educational achievement and citizenship of its youth.  This is best accomplished through strong and ongoing community partnerships
  • Implement a year-round school calendar

Our incredible faculty and staff, our committed Board of Directors, our partnership with the MacPhail Music Center, our collaborative parent community, and our wonderful students have supported Paideia in meeting many of our goals throughout the years.  We continually strive to improve our academic progress and performance while ensuring that we use our resources wisely, and we are persistent in our efforts to achieve excellence.

Our Enrollment

Paideia Academy ended the 2011-2012 school year at full capacity, for the first time, with 396 students in grades K-8.  This was a 2.5% increase from 2010-2011.  We opened in 2005 with grades K-4, added fifth and sixth grade in the 2006-2007 school year, added a seventh grade in 2007-2008, then added our eighth grade in 2008-2009.  The school population in 2011-2012 was comprised of 83% White, 5.6% Asian, 3.8% Hispanic, 6.8% African-American, and 0.5% American Indian students.  The student body included 18% special education students and no English Language Learners.  48.5% of the students were boys, and 51.5% were girls.  The percentage of students eligible for free or reduced lunch was 14.7%.  Our average attendance rate was 96.7%.

Most of our students are geographically located in District 196 and live in the southern suburbs of Minneapolis, including Apple Valley, Rosemount, and Burnsville, among others.  Applications are accepted during our Open Enrollment window, which lasts three to six weeks.  Priority for applications is given to: 1) previously enrolled students, 2) siblings of previously enrolled students, and 3) general enrollment.  A placement lottery is held if the sibling or general enrollment exceeds the number of spaces available in each grade level.  This placement lottery also establishes a waiting list for the school year.     

Paideia Academy is authorized by Friends of Education,
EX0-01-A, 200 East Lake Street
Wayzata, MN 55391
"I am so grateful that Paideia exists.  Paideia was advertised at an incredibly synchronistic time for our family.  Our experience has been wonderful.  I love being involved..."
   -Paideia Parent
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