Picabo Street Academy, located in Park City, Utah, is uniquely qualified to deliver exceptional individualized education to students with an extracurricular passion striving to achieve their dreams and fulfill their potential.
In addition to providing a unique educational opportunity to students, Picabo Street Academy supports local youth organizations in the Park City community.
The history of Picabo Street Academy starts back in 1986, when Picabo Street was named to the U.S. Ski Team. Only 15 years old at the time, Picabo spent the next four years struggling to find the time to complete her high school education, while training and competing at the highest levels in alpine skiing to pursue her Olympic dreams. The obstacles encountered, and the compromises made, to successfully graduate from high school helped to plant the seed that has grown into the vision and mission of Picabo Street Academy. Picabo believed there had to be a better way to serve talented young people with passion, so that they did not need to make compromises in either areas of their life to be the best they could be in both.
Having moved back to Park City, Utah in 2015, Picabo felt it was the right time to give back to the sports community by finding a way to provide individualized academic pathways for high school students. She found the ideal partners in Dan Kemp and Michelle Demschar to initiate a creative solution to a challenge faced by a gifted group of students, not satisfactorily addressed within the current educational landscape. Dan, with 25 years experience in education, has been at the forefront of developing innovative educational models for students for many years. Michelle has broad operational expertise in elite sport in addition to a background in high school teaching.
The three of them set about realizing their combined vision for providing an exceptional education for students whose primary focus at this time in their life is a passion that requires individualized scheduling, that conflicts with the traditional school calendar.
Given the plethora of virtual curriculum providers available, one of the most important tasks was to identify an academic partner who would meet the needs of our students. As Dan Kemp has worked extensively with many different virtual programs and official accreditation boards over the years, he was familiar with the strengths and weaknesses, advantages and pit falls of program offerings. Picabo Street Academy is committed to providing a rigorous curriculum to ensure that our students are truly college ready. Starting with 80 different providers, Dan eventually identified three, whose courses met the standard we were looking for. The final decider was to ensure that the courses would be available 12 months of the year, as we believe the option of year round enrollment is another fundamental requirement for elite athletes.
Picabo Street Academy provides the flexibility of a virtual curriculum paired with live teachers to provide one-on-one teaching and support: an enriched blended model. Until the ultimate goal of being housed at the Utah Olympic Park is realized, Picabo Street Academy is located in the Prospector area of Park City. With a large open classroom and two smaller classrooms for individual and group teaching, students are encouraged to come to school each day as their training schedule permits, to work either independently, with peers or with our teachers.
In this student centric model, students are encouraged to be a part of the planning process and be accountable for learning outcomes. With as much or little live support as needed or wanted during a full 12 month period, students are able to determine when they learn, knowing that they will never be behind; the completion of courses is not determined by the number of days sitting in a classroom, but by concepts mastered and skills learned.
Staff at Picabo Street Academy take a holistic approach to the schooling of each of its students; we like to help them determine the best situation for their needs. This may entail a full education solution or it may involve supplementing classes taken elsewhere with individual courses. Parents of students who have high aspirations in an extra curricular activity are often concerned that by following their passion, their child will compromise their education and future college prospects. With a proven track record in placing students at top colleges nationally, staff at Picabo Street Academy can provide solutions and pathways to students, thus alleviating parents’ stress and allowing them to enjoy their child’s passion and achievements.
Exceptional Individualized Education
Providing unique, personalized educational opportunities for students with an extracurricular passion so that they can achieve their dreams and fulfill their potential.
Our core values, as represented by the 6 golden stars on our crest are:
- Excellence – set the bar high, and aim to surpass it
- Integrity – be true to yourself, and honest to all
- Accountability – you are answerable for your actions to yourself and your community
- Attitude – come prepared to give your best effort
- Tenacity –persevere despite challenges
- Grit – dig deep and take charge of your success