About Us

Why Here and Now?

Why here in Annapolis?

Annapolis is a remarkable community.  It is unique in its history, culture, and capacity.  But it also has uniquely inequitable structures and systems that have created a “tale of two cities” (or perhaps three!).  

It is a city small enough to care about all its citizens and large enough to provide an array of compelling work and educational opportunities for young people.  The African proverb, “It takes a village to raise a child” may be difficult to manifest in DC or Baltimore, but here in Annapolis, we have the resources, the dedication, and the diversity to support the success of every young person, if we make the walls of school more permeable and leverage our amazing Annapolis “Village” for learning and growth.

Why now?

Educators and policymakers have been talking about two parallel crises in education for decades – the opportunity gap for economically and culturally marginalized students and the changing demands of the 21st Century.  Despite these dual concerns, little has changed in the basic industrial-model structure through which high school education is delivered for more than a hundred years.

Student disengagement and loss of trust in education is not new, but the COVID pandemic and the rise of Social Media and Artificial Intelligence are further challenging the status quo.  Students feel increasingly isolated and stressed but also have access to information and learning more easily than ever, in school and beyond. 

The Blueprint for Maryland’s Future sets out ambitious goals for change, but only with real innovation will it realize its goals. New Village Academy meets the Blueprint’s requirements for college and career readiness by 10th grade, ramping up career and technical education, investment in underserved communities, smaller class sizes, and increased parent-school collaboration in ways that are not add-ons to the old design, but built into the very fabric of the school’s structure. 

Why within AACPS?

Not every student or family in Anne Arundel County wants a dramatically different high school experience.  Many students are thriving in traditional high schools. One size does not fit all.  But having a free-choice option for students who would benefit from the increased responsibility, support, and empowerment of New Village Academy only strengthens the AACPS portfolio of educational opportunities. 

While Annapolis High School, like many high schools around the country, struggles to meet the needs of many of its diverse learners, providing a truly different approach to high school for families who choose it helps AACPS in many ways: