Advertisement
Advertisement

No rating

GreatSchools Rating

The First Academy

Private | PK-12 | 1130 students

Our school is best known for its academic rigor and strong spiritual formation.
 
 

 
 

Living in Orlando

Situated in an urban neighborhood. The median home value is $40,400. The average monthly rent for a 2 bedroom apartment is $840.

Source: Sperling's Best Places
 
Last modified
Community Rating

4 stars

Community Rating by Year
2014:
Based on 4 ratings
2013:
Based on 2 ratings
2012:
Based on 2 ratings
2011:
Based on 3 ratings

Teacher quality

Principal leadership

Parent involvement

Rate this school

Click on stars to rate
Please select a star rating for this school.
    Helpful reviews answer questions:
  • What do you think others should know?
  • What do you like?
  • How could your school improve?
    Review Guidelines
    GreatSchools won’t post reviews that contain:
  • Inappropriate language
  • Allegations of criminal conduct
  • Names of students, teachers or staff
1200 characters remaining
Please read and accept our Terms of Use to join GreatSchools.
Please indicate your relationship to the school.
Registration is required to post your anonymous review
We will not display your name, photo or email address with your review.
OR
Your email address will never be published or shared.
Indicates a required field

41 reviews of this school


Sort by:
Show reviews by:
Posted April 22, 2014

My children attended TFA for 5 years. I would not consider it a college prep school. The faculty are super nice and helpful, but do not hold the students accountable. Grades are deeply influenced by political clout and need for re-enrollment. This ultimately hurts the children. College is not like that. I have experienced this first hand. TFA is a very pleasant place to be, but it is not a college preparatory school. If your child is academically gifted, I would select another school in Orlando.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted March 21, 2014

Most of our TFA STUDENTS are happy here. As a teacher who has taught all grades from k- 12 in the last 20 years, I can say that most of our students are a fantastic group of great kids. From firsthand experience, I can say that our teachers place their priority on your child, and regardless of your income, so the playing field is level here. No mistaking it, a quality education takes money. We are a dedicated bunch who love what we do here. I am sorry to read some rare negative comments, but you do not see the whole picture. Step into our classrooms and observe us mentor your child, then make your judgement. Be an informed parent, not by your child's immature opinion but by your objective mature wisdom. I love my students and love this school.
—Submitted by a teacher


Posted March 10, 2014

There is nowhere else in Central Florida that I would want my children! Excellence in all areas: Strong Christ-centered worldview, academics, athletics, arts,...TFA has it all. A very special place.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted March 4, 2014

Our K4 experience has been absolutely awesome! We have seen our daughter's "rough" edges worked out and Mrs. Connell is the best teacher I have ever seen. (I have taught 3 levels of science in my career and I think she may even put me to shame.) She makes sure all students are accepted and loved by their "friends". No one is allowed to talk mean to each other. I believe it's called "Love and Logic" and Mrs. Connell is the expert at it. My wife and I feel there is truly a partnership between the school, church and home. I am soooo glad we made this decision to go here. I talk to other families that do not attend here and they get pretty jealous when we talk about what are kids are learning and how they have been taught to interact with their peers. TFA also has a great handle on Social Networking integration and we get posts from our classroom, Athletic Events, School events and more. It is truly a unique educational experience with a great Christian World View integration.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted July 9, 2013

The First Academy has been a strong academic school for my 2 children who have taken all AP and Honors classes. The Christian values shown by the teachers, coaches and fellow students has shaped my kids character for a lifetime. Thanks TFA- you are the BEST college-prep school in Orlando!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted February 27, 2013

Wonderful school, we couldn't be happier. Great staff, wonderful teachers, excellent athletic and academic programs.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted October 12, 2012

What a joke. Theres nothing christ centered about this school, try cash centered. The stats are awesome, these kids graduate and go to great colleges. What they dont tell you is the kids end up at the local community college because they are unprepared for the real world.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 11, 2012

The First Academy has been a part of our family for 10 years now. I have had the pleasure of meeting and hearing about some of the BEST teachers that are leading my children. Both of my children ( one now graduated) really enjoy the sincerity, knowledge and caring attitude the teachers bring with them every day to the classroom. Thank you so much for the continued example and instruction on how to truly exhibit great character and leadership in this world.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted November 16, 2011

What an amazing blessing The First Academy has been to our family! We are so thankful that our child has the opportunity to participate in a challenging academic program while learning how to be a leader by Biblical example. The teachers and leadership at TFA truly care about the children and actually pray for them. You rarely find that at other schools. The strong leadership, excellent teachers and Biblical foundation provide an environment where children can not only learn but THRIVE! Thank you, TFA!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted November 10, 2011

The First Academy has been a huge blessing to our family. While the academics are tough, the teachers provide the support and teaching to help our kids succeed. The Spiritual Formation plan is solid. Our daughter is learning concepts and truth that we would never have thought to try to explain to her in first grade!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted November 3, 2011

The teachers are kind and welcoming and staff are happy to assist you and your children. If you're looking to raise your children with God first, TFA is the place for you. Academics, Arts and Athletics are all sure to prevail so if your child has any aspirations for extra-curriculars you'll find it all here. With 1000 students distributed k4-12, your student is sure to get the attention he or she needs to excel spiritually and academically.
—Submitted by a teacher


Posted June 28, 2010

TFA has amazing leadership, with Dr. Steve Whitaker being one of the best Headmasters I have ever seen. He not only knows how to lay a vision for the future, but he knows how to make it happen. And the teachers are made to be the heroes of the school, which inspires them and also honors them for how they pour into these kids' lives. Yes, it is a school with wealthy families and cliques among the parents, but this does not come from the leadership of the school and this is not what is celebrated among the students. Christian character and Excellence in all areas of life are what is emphasized. There are many wonderful families here who are involved in their kids' lives and raise their children to be godly leaders and that is who I choose to focus on, spend time with, and glean from.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted February 3, 2010

If you don't have lots, and I mean LOTS of money, don't even waste your time going to this school. The parent's think they are so much better than the 'average' person, and if you don't fit their mold, your singled out. They know how to get what they want from teachers and staff to make sure their kids excel. I would not recommend this school to anyone.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted January 4, 2010

My son and daugher are really enjoying TFA. They have been in 2 other Christian Schools in the north and TFA by far has been the best school.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted July 16, 2009

My son just finished the Kindergarten program at TFA. I have been amazed how much he has grown academically and socially this past year! The Kindergarten curriculum is a fantasitic balance--the children learn at a remendous rate. And even when they are playing, they are learning and the kids don't even realize it. If you are looking for a great start to your child's education, The First Academy should be your first choice!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted July 16, 2009

We love TFA. We have been here for 6 years and have had one of our daughters graduate and accepted to 4 different colleges. She attends one of the Florida colleges because of Bright Futures. I can not tell you what TFA means to us as parents, the academic and the spiritual foundation can not be meausred in our eyes. We still have children at TFA and will be here until they graduate. If your looking for a 'family' school this is the one for you.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted January 12, 2009

Awesome School, Our sports teams are very good. You should definitely come if you are looking for a good private christian athletic school. We have a good fan base and we support our teams all the time.
—Submitted by a student


Posted December 14, 2008

If you have money or 'connected' you and your child will excell at this school. The Headmaster is a nice man who appears to deeply care about this school but I can say from our experience, Christ's principles aren't always practiced by some staff and and parents. As stated earlier from a previous submission, they follow a warped view of the Golden Rule. 'Those with the gold....rule! I
—Submitted by a parent


Posted December 3, 2008

We are the parents of a student who graduated after 10 years at TFA and went on to University of Florida (GO GATORS!). Our child was accepted at every college at which she applied, and was offered nearly $100,000 in academic scholarships. Even more importantly, she continues to delight and amaze her grateful parents with a clear sense of right and wrong, an active moral compass, and a visible strength of faith. TFA was a steadfast partner in all aspects of her success. We gladly give The First Academy the highest recommendation as well as our heartfelt thanks for an amazing experience.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted June 5, 2008

I love my school! The teachers are terrific, the classes are challenging and the friends are wonderful. I would not go anywhere else! Go TFA!
—Submitted by a student


Community ratings and reviews do not represent the views of GreatSchools nor does GreatSchools check their accuracy or verify the reviewers' identities. Use your discretion when evaluating these reviews.

About these ratings

The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.

We currently do not have any test score information for this school. Unlike public schools, private schools are not always required to report data about their schools or not required to take the same tests as public schools. Many private schools take different standardized tests; however, that information is often made available only to families of enrolled students. We strive to acquire additional private school data whenever available.

Student ethnicity

Ethnicity This school State average
White 78% 42%
Two or more races 8% 3%
Hispanic 7% 29%
Black 5% 23%
Asian or Asian/Pacific Islander 1% 3%
Hawaiian Native/Pacific Islander 1% 0%
American Indian/Alaska Native 0% 0%
Source: NCES, 2011-2012

College readiness and student pathways

Percentage of students going to 4-year college 100% (2013)
Colleges most students attend after graduation UF
FSU
UCF
Read more about resources at this school
Source: Manually entered by a school official.

Teacher resources

Special staff resources available to students Assistant principal(s)
Art teacher(s)
College counselor(s)
Dance teacher(s)
Gifted specialist(s)
Librarian/media specialist(s)
Music teacher(s)
PE instructor(s)
Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
Priest, pastor, or other religious personnel
Robotics/Technology specialist(s)
Security personnel
Teacher aid/assistant teacher
Foreign languages spoken by school staff Chinese (Mandarin)
French
Russian
Spanish
Read more about programs at this school
Source: Provided by a school official.

Awards

Academic awards received in the past 3 years
  • Apple Distinguished Program (2014)
  • Blue Ribbon Middle School (2013)
  • Blue Ribbon Lower School (2011)

Special education / special needs

Level of special education programming offered
  • Basic - the school offers or partners to provide services based on the needs of individual students

Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math (STEM)

Staff resources available to students
  • Robotics/Technology specialist(s)
School facilities
  • Computer lab
  • Science lab
Vocational or skills-based training offered
  • IT support
Clubs
  • Robotics club

Arts & music

Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Dance teacher(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
  • Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
School facilities
  • Art room
  • Music room
  • Performance stage
Visual arts
  • Ceramics
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
  • Photography
Music
  • Band
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Instrumental music lessons
  • Jazz band
  • Orchestra
Performing and written arts
  • Creative writing
  • Dance
  • Drama
  • Poetry
Media arts
  • Technical design and production
  • Video / Film production
Clubs
  • Art club
  • Drama club
  • Marching band
  • Yearbook

Language learning

Foreign languages taught
  • French
  • Latin
  • Spanish
Foreign languages spoken by staff
  • Chinese (Mandarin)
  • French
  • Russian
  • Spanish

Health & athletics

Staff resources available to students
  • Dance teacher(s)
  • PE instructor(s)
School facilities
  • Access to sports fields
  • Gym
Clubs
  • Cooking club

Gifted & talented

Instructional and/or curriculum models used
  • Advanced placement courses
  • Gifted / high performing
  • Honors track
Extra learning resources offered
  • Acceleration
Staff resources available to students
  • Gifted specialist(s)
College preparation / awareness resources offered
  • College prep programs/courses during the year
  • College presentations or information sessions
  • Community college courses
  • SAT/ACT prep classes
  • Summer college prep programs
Clubs
  • Debate
  • National Honor Society
School leaders can update this information here.

School basics

School start time
  • 8:00 am
School end time
  • 3:00 pm
Before school or after school care / program onsite
  • Before school
  • After school
School Leader's name
  • Dr. Steve Whitaker
Best ways for parents to contact the school
  • Email
  • Phone
  • text TFA to 292929
Age at which early childhood or Pre-K program begins
  • 4 years old
Gender
  • Coed
Boarding options
  • Day school
Is there an application process?
  • Yes
Affiliation
  • Christian
Associations
  • ACSI
Fax number
  • (407) 206-8700

Programs

Instructional and/or curriculum models used

Don't understand these terms?
  • Advanced placement courses
  • College prep
  • Core knowledge
  • Gifted / high performing
  • Honors track
Specific academic themes or areas of focus

Don't understand these terms?
  • Religious
Bi-lingual or language immersion programs offered

Don't understand these terms?
  • No
Level of special education programming offered
  • Basic - the school offers or partners to provide services based on the needs of individual students
Foreign languages taught
  • French
  • Latin
  • Spanish
Level of ESL/ELL programming offered
  • None
Vocational or skills-based training offered
  • Business management
  • IT support

Resources

Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Assistant principal(s)
  • College counselor(s)
  • Dance teacher(s)
  • Gifted specialist(s)
  • Librarian/media specialist(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
  • PE instructor(s)
  • Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
  • Priest, pastor, or other religious personnel
  • Robotics/Technology specialist(s)
  • Security personnel
  • Teacher aid/assistant teacher
Foreign languages spoken by staff
  • Chinese (Mandarin)
  • French
  • Russian
  • Spanish
Extra learning resources offered
  • Acceleration
  • Career/college counseling
College preparation / awareness resources offered
  • College prep programs/courses during the year
  • College presentations or information sessions
  • Community college courses
  • SAT/ACT prep classes
  • Summer college prep programs
Transportation options
  • None
School facilities
  • Access to sports fields
  • Art room
  • Auditorium
  • Cafeteria
  • Chapel/spiritual reflection center
  • College/career center
  • Computer lab
  • Gym
  • Internet access
  • Library
  • Music room
  • Performance stage
  • Playground
  • Science lab
School leaders can update this information here.

Sports

Boys sports
  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Cross country
  • Diving
  • Football
  • Golf
  • Lacrosse
  • Power lifting / Weight lifting
  • Soccer
  • Swimming
  • Tennis
  • Track
Girls sports
  • Basketball
  • Cheerleading
  • Cross country
  • Diving
  • Golf
  • Lacrosse
  • Soccer
  • Softball
  • Swimming
  • Tennis
  • Track
  • Volleyball

Arts & music

Visual arts
  • Ceramics
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
  • Photography
Music
  • Band
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Instrumental music lessons
  • Jazz band
  • Orchestra
Performing arts
  • Creative writing
  • Dance
  • Drama
  • Poetry
Media arts
  • Technical design and production
  • Video / Film production

Student clubs

Clubs (distinct from courses)
  • Art club
  • Chess club
  • Community service
  • Cooking club
  • Debate
  • Drama club
  • Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA)
  • Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA)
  • Marching band
  • National Honor Society
  • Robotics club
  • Student council/government
  • Yearbook
School leaders can update this information here.

Upcoming Events

No upcoming events found for this school
Searching for school events...
Date
Title
  • {{date}}
    {{title}}
Export calendar
Outlook.com
Microsoft Outlook
iCal Format
Google Calendar
Print Calendar
Uploading, please wait...
POWERED BY
Tandem

Photos

School culture

Dress Code
  • Uniforms
Bullying policy
  • This school has a bullying and/or cyber bullying policy in place.
Parent involvement
  • Attend parent nights
  • Chaperone school trips
  • Join PTO/PTA
  • Volunteer in the classroom
More from this school
  • Campus Tours are offered daily. Prospective students in Grades 2-12 can "shadow" for the day. First day of school is Wed. Aug. 13th, so apply soon as classes are filling quickly!
School leaders can update this information here.

Apply

 

This school accepts applications on a

rolling basis

 
Apply now
 

What does it cost?

Tuition range for the 2014-2015 school year
$6000 - $16000
Vouchers accepted
No
Financial aid offered
Yes.
School-based aid

Planning ahead

Students typically attend these schools after graduating
UF
FSU
UCF
College preparation / awareness offered
College prep programs/courses during the year
College presentations or information sessions
Community college courses
SAT/ACT prep classes
Summer college prep programs
Students' post-graduation plans in 2013
4 year college - 100%
Notice an inaccuracy? Let us know!

2667 Bruton Blvd
Orlando, FL 32805
Website: Click here
Phone: (407) 206-8602

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Compare this school
to nearby schools

Compare schools »

Compare

Add this school to compare

Nearby schools







ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT