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ACE Academy

Private | PK-12 | 140 students

We serve the intellectual, social, and emotional needs of gifted learners.
 
 

 
 

Living in Austin

Situated in an urban neighborhood. The median home value is $287,500. The average monthly rent for a 2 bedroom apartment is $940.

Source: Sperling's Best Places
 
Last modified
Community Rating

4 stars

Community Rating by Year
2014:
Based on 3 ratings
2013:
Based on 5 ratings
2012:
Based on 6 ratings
2011:
Based on 10 ratings

Teacher quality

Principal leadership

Parent involvement

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57 reviews of this school


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Posted May 25, 2011

I am a teacher at ACE and a parent. My children attend in the elementary and high school groupings. Two of my children qualified by Wechsler testing and our other child was previously in a gifted and talented program at another private school. To comment for the high school ... Our son has received college-level instruction in history and writing mechanics, and daily tutoring in geometry (for free). The one-on-one in Latin instruction is superb. The fledgling debate team this year was a fantastic experience. The music/drama instruction at all levels is (I believe) the best in the city. Our son has adored Shakespeare at Winedale as well as being a lead in the school play this year. Staff assisted him daily with learning his lines. Our middle child has received outstanding one-on-one support from Tabitha Molett, the head of the Middle School. Her writing and grammar proficiency have jumped leaps and bounds under Tabitha's expert guidance. Our youngest child has developed a love of journalism and photography in the elementary photojournalism class. ACE has been a wonderful experience for our family.
—Submitted by a teacher


Posted May 11, 2011

Could you please provide more info about the private school your child goes to? We are looking for a good school for our child who is also gifted. Thank you!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted March 23, 2011

As a staff member at ACE, I have to say that I've never seen such a brilliant and dedicated group of people. This is a school pioneering into a neglected and underserved area of education. The program that is being built is at once groundbreaking, unique, and deeply sensitive to the individual needs of the children, reaching far beyond the "norms" to join research validated best practices for instruction with our own innovations and programs. The leaders and teachers are filled with the greatest passion in their work and compassion for their students, and are blessed with the support of dedicated and engaged parents. The classes are active and high energy - for a reason. It's how our students learn. We don't believe in straight rows of desks and worksheets; we believe in depth and creativity. I'm proud to work at ACE Academy, I'm constantly inspired by my coworkers, and I dearly love my students. Their happiness and development is my highest priority. That's the philosophy at ACE: we live to serve the social, emotional, and academic needs of our special group of kids. It's thrilling to be a part of this venture; we aren't just workers, we're builders and we're LEARNERS ourselves.
—Submitted by a teacher


Posted March 20, 2011

Our first year was wonderful. Incredible teacher, challenging but fun classwork, made some good friends, etc. We were willing to disregard the lack of organization, some unprofessional teachers, and lack of communication until this year. Most of the teachers are both young with little experience and have little or no training with giftedness. Though some teachers are extraordinary, there are also some who are untruthful and unprofessional. I witnessed a teacher yelling and mocking a parent, and another teacher misleading the Heads of the school so she would not have to take responsibility for her lack of communication with said parent. Heads of school are so busy "growing" the school they do not seem to care about the concerns of parents and students already there. There is obviously a need for GT schools, and that is why there is such growth. However, the unprofessionalism(Heads and teachers), incredible disorganization, lack of communication(teachers/Heads with parents), and lack of any template for curriculum(even gifted kids and their teachers need some guide) make this school inadequate. What is the rate of returning students versus new students?
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 14, 2010

Our daughter is having lots of fun and enjoying the change of pace from traditional schooling.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted March 9, 2010

Disorganized, Disorganized, Disorganized! The main reason we chose ACE was hoping it would provide a better education and environment for our gifted child. But we became more disappointed. Administration and co founders have troubles in communication skills, customer satisfaction, one of the co founders focusing on the punishment by ignoring the parents if she does not like one of them it s very clear that she has lack of behaviors. So they settled for less to expend school to the size they wished for do not know what it is doing and tends to get defensive. *Disorganized, chaotic*. Not worth the money at all!! Many teachers are parents without much of teaching experiences. School functions are not organized. Not a nice learning environment for gifted. Need a new administration and principles but since that would be impossible here. We hope another well educated co founder s start opening a new gifted and talented school in austin based on high quality and mission statement.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted February 4, 2010

We are new to ACE this year and in the pre-K class. My daughter loves school, loves her teachers, loves getting up in the morning to go to school and loves all her friends in class. We are very happy and feel it is the perfect fit for our daughter. We were looking for a place that was very nurturing & where the student/teacher ratio was low. I'm unclear what the other reviewers are referring to regarding the communications issues. I experience the opposite. The head of the school sends out weekly emails. It is a very personal type vibe at the school with an open door policy to speak to administrators anytime. My only negative is about the holiday schedule. ACE observes AISD scheduling and also observes Jewish and Christian holidays so with all that there are many days off of school.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted January 21, 2010

We were happy with ACE before the current school year, but things have unfortunately been going downhill lately. The problems with communication and organization, which have always been there but could be overlooked as growing pains, have gotten worse instead of better, and the situation has been exacerbated by issues with teachers we hadn't had before. Very different experience this year compared with last.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted December 19, 2009

My child is a middle school student and I'm so happy with the great group of peers. Really nice kids and excellent teachers that are teaching leadership among the students.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted October 27, 2009

My child attended ACE for 3 yrs. Overall, my experience with ACE was positive. We left ACE mainly because my child became pretty much the lone student at her academic level. The teachers were very willing to accommodate, but we realized that there might be limitations. ACE is a growing school and they had started earlier so my child would not have landed in this situation.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted August 31, 2009

I'm surprised by some of the negative reviews here. What school wouldn't have growing pains with this kind of growth? I see organizational improvements with clear goals in place. Our child was new last year and I can't even begin to describe the positive changes he has gone through thanks to ACE. Our child went from disliking school (recess was previously his favorite 'class') to not being able to decide if science, language arts, robotics or chess were his favorite. His confidence in his own abilities have sky-rocketed and his little personality is slowly emerging. Friends, relatives, neighbors have ALL noticed a big difference. Having had another child at a major private school in Dallas as well as one of Austin's top rated school districts, I am amazed at what ACE has accomplished in such a short amount of time. Tuition is on par with other private schools.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted July 20, 2009

This school was an absolute lifesaver after a horrid experience at a private school. It is wonderful to have a child go a school where it is okay to be smart.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted June 21, 2009

After a really awful semester at the local public elementary school, my child thrived at ACE. The teachers and administrators went out of their way to accommodate my child's needs, and they provided me with important feedback about my child's academic and social progress. My child still remembers ACE fondly, especially the way the teachers used interesting and challenging projects to teach fundamental concepts. My child was never bored at ACE. If it weren't for the fact that we live fairly far away and find the tuition costs prohibitive, my child would still be there. (Fortunately, my child is now thriving at a different public school, but no school can match the richness of the curriculum and variety of experiences offered at ACE.)


Posted May 27, 2009

My child is in one of the higher grade levels and just is not being challenged. We have no textbooks, only read 2 books all year (grade level historical fiction), and made it only about a third of the way through the math curriculum. At the middle and high school levels, a school has to prove it can provide at least a comparable curriculum to public schools if it hopes to prepare kids for college. I think Ace should focus doing younger grades exceptionally well and not all grades with mediocrity.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 24, 2009

My son attended ACE this year and loved it. His peers were bright, sensitive, funny and well-mannered. His teacher diversified for all of the children and was truly committed to the learning of each and every child. The school encourages creativity and individual interests. My son was shy and withdrawn at his last school, due to a strict teacher who valued conformity over individual achievement. He is now confident and loves learning. ACE is still about the success of the students.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 22, 2009

Our son developed tummy aches at his prior school; he was so unhappy. At the end of the year evaluation they proudly showed me how he could count to a 100. They had no idea that he could add/subtract/divide/multiply etc to a 100 as well. ACE is young and has some growing pains but we have found the school very receptive (eg they made it a nut free school since some of the children were allergic). We just really like everyone at ACE as well - the parents are great, teachers are young but committed and caring (and most importantly, they understand the concept of gifted). RE: organization; they are working on it. But where else could your preschooler have met an Olympic gold medalist, gone to the opera, and hear a private concert from Tuvan throat singers? Beyond all, we're grateful for a place where our son thrives.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 20, 2009

As a teacher at ACE Academy, I have been in a position to see the administration in action, solving problems, planning curriculum, creating programs, and adapting to our students' needs. The staff continues to grow and thrive. We are a happy diverse, engaged group of teachers, aides and administrators. I hope that any parent of a gifted child will look into this wonderful resource.
—Submitted by a teacher


Posted May 13, 2009

This school is still evolving but while our daughter has been there this year, we have seen so many positive changes. The amount of feedback from the school I have heard complaints about has improved and is now great. I have never felt this semester that I do not know what is going on at the school. I think they are getting their systems in place and doing a great job. Our daughter for the first time LOVES school! She has been to 2 others and always gave us excuses why she didn't want to go. Now she is upset when it is the weekend. She is so excited everyday and feels challenged daily. The topics she comes home with and wants to discuss are amazing. Her peer group is such a good mix and she truly feels every student is her friend. Awesome school!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted April 14, 2009

Behavior in the older classrooms is rowdy and unruly and the quieter kids often get entirely drowned out.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted April 7, 2009

I have 2 children here now and we have been very happy. I think all the negative comments come from parents who can find negativity about anything. The school is growing and expanding and the administration truly cares for the development of a great school. They can't please the whims of every parent and I think the low reviews come from people who didn't get their way. I am glad the administration is willing to stand up for the standard they have set. This school was a blessing for our older child who would not be happy if we had to send her back to our public school. Both are eager and happy to be at school and enjoy learning instead of drilling.
—Submitted by a parent


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 80% 31%
Hispanic 12% 51%
Asian or Pacific Islander 6% 4%
Black 2% 13%
American Indian/Alaska Native 0% 0%
Hawaiian Native/Pacific Islander 0% 0%
Two or more races 0% 2%
Source: NCES, 2011-2012

Teacher resources

Special staff resources available to students Assistant principal(s)
Art teacher(s)
Computer specialist(s)
Gardening teacher(s)
Gifted specialist(s)
Librarian/media specialist(s)
Math specialist(s)
Music teacher(s)
PE instructor(s)
Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
Reading specialist(s)
Robotics/Technology specialist(s)
School psychologist
Teacher aid/assistant teacher
Tutor(s)
Foreign languages spoken by school staff Dutch
French
German
Italian
Russian
Spanish
Read more about programs at this school
Source: Provided by a school official.

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Awards

Community service awards received in the past 3 years
  • No Place For Hate (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
Extra learning resources offered
  • Differentiated learning programs

Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math (STEM)

Specific academic themes or areas of focus
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Technology
Staff resources available to students
  • Computer specialist(s)
  • Gardening teacher(s)
  • Math specialist(s)
  • Robotics/Technology specialist(s)
School facilities
  • Access to farm or natural area
  • Computer lab
  • Garden/Greenhouse
  • Outdoor learning lab
  • Science lab
Vocational or skills-based training offered
  • Computer programming
Clubs
  • Robotics club

Arts & music

Specific academic themes or areas of focus
  • Arts (all)
  • Music
  • Performing arts
Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
  • Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
School facilities
  • Art room
  • Music room
Visual arts
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
  • Photography
  • Sculpture
  • Textile design
Music
  • Band
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Instrumental music lessons
  • Jazz band
  • Rock band
  • Theory
  • Vocal lessons / coaching
Performing and written arts
  • Dance
  • Drama
  • Improv
Media arts
  • Computer animation
  • Video / Film production
Clubs
  • Art club
  • Arts and crafts
  • Dance club
  • Drama club
  • Literary magazine
  • Yearbook

Language learning

Specific academic themes or areas of focus
  • Foreign languages
Foreign languages taught
  • French
  • Latin
  • Spanish
Foreign languages spoken by staff
  • Dutch
  • French
  • German
  • Italian
  • Russian
  • Spanish
Clubs
  • Foreign language club: Mandarin Chinese, Hebrew, Arab

Health & athletics

Staff resources available to students
  • Gardening teacher(s)
  • PE instructor(s)
  • School psychologist
School facilities
  • Access to farm or natural area
  • Garden/Greenhouse
  • Multi-purpose room ("cafegymatorium")
Clubs
  • Martial arts (judo, tae kwon do, karate, etc)

Gifted & talented

Instructional and/or curriculum models used
  • Gifted / high performing
Extra learning resources offered
  • Acceleration
Staff resources available to students
  • Gifted specialist(s)
College preparation / awareness resources offered
  • College presentations or information sessions
  • Visiting teachers or lecturers from colleges
School leaders can update this information here.

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School basics

School start time
  • 8:15
School end time
  • 3:30 am
Before school or after school care / program onsite
  • Before school: starts at 7:30 a.m.
  • After school: ends at 5:30 a.m.
School Leader's name
  • Donna Hulsey
Best ways for parents to contact the school
  • Email
  • Phone
Age at which early childhood or Pre-K program begins
  • 3 years old
Gender
  • Coed
Boarding options
  • Day school
Is there an application process?
  • Yes
Affiliation
  • Nonsectarian
Fax number
  • (512) 532-6188

Programs

Instructional and/or curriculum models used

Don't understand these terms?
  • Classical (e.g., focuses on the "classics")
  • Core knowledge
  • Gifted / high performing
  • Independent Study
  • Individually guided instruction
  • Multi-aged
  • Project-based
  • STEM
Specific academic themes or areas of focus

Don't understand these terms?
  • Arts (all)
  • Foreign languages
  • Global
  • Humanities
  • Mathematics
  • Music
  • Performing arts
  • Science
  • Technology
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
  • Computer programming

Resources

Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Assistant principal(s)
  • Computer specialist(s)
  • Gardening teacher(s)
  • Gifted specialist(s)
  • Librarian/media specialist(s)
  • Math specialist(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
  • PE instructor(s)
  • Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
  • Reading specialist(s)
  • Robotics/Technology specialist(s)
  • School psychologist
  • Teacher aid/assistant teacher
  • Tutor(s)
Foreign languages spoken by staff
  • Dutch
  • French
  • German
  • Italian
  • Russian
  • Spanish
Extra learning resources offered
  • Acceleration
  • Differentiated learning programs
  • Mentoring
  • Tutoring
College preparation / awareness resources offered
  • College presentations or information sessions
  • Visiting teachers or lecturers from colleges
Transportation options
  • None
School facilities
  • Access to farm or natural area
  • Art room
  • Audiovisual aids
  • Auditorium
  • Computer lab
  • Garden/Greenhouse
  • Internet access
  • Library
  • Multi-purpose room ("cafegymatorium")
  • Music room
  • Outdoor learning lab
  • Playground
  • Science lab
Partnerships with local resources and organizations
School leaders can update this information here.

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School leaders: Help your school shine on GreatSchools
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and more! Get started »

Sports

Boys sports
  • Fencing
  • Judo / Other Martial Arts
Girls sports
  • Fencing
  • Judo / Other Martial Arts

Arts & music

Visual arts
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
  • Photography
  • Sculpture
  • Textile design
Music
  • Band
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Instrumental music lessons
  • Jazz band
  • Rock band
  • Theory
  • Vocal lessons / coaching
Performing arts
  • Dance
  • Drama
  • Improv
Media arts
  • Computer animation
  • Video / Film production

Student clubs

Clubs (distinct from courses)
  • Art club
  • Arts and crafts
  • Chess club
  • Cinema Club
  • Dance club
  • Destination Imagination
  • Drama club
  • Foreign language club: Mandarin Chinese, Hebrew, Arab
  • Literary magazine
  • Martial arts (judo, tae kwon do, karate, etc)
  • Quiz Bowl
  • Robotics club
  • Yearbook
School leaders can update this information here.

Upcoming Events

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School culture

Dress Code
  • Neither uniforms nor dress code
Bullying policy
  • This school has a bullying and/or cyber bullying policy in place.
Parent involvement
  • Attend parent nights
  • Chaperone school trips
  • Coach sports teams or extracurricular activities
  • Join PTO/PTA
  • Organize cultural events
  • Organize fundraising events (school auction, bake sales, etc.)
  • Present special topics during curricular units
  • Serve on school improvement team or governance council
  • Volunteer in the classroom
  • Volunteer time after school
More from this school
  • ACE Academy gained an unconditional full accreditation status through AdvancEd (SACS/CASI) in the spring of 2012. This accreditation means that all aspects of the school, from teaching methods to curriculum to facilities to parent and student involvement, were evaluated and met the high criteria for accreditation by this nationally recognized organization.
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 2011-2012 school year
$5000 - $12000
Vouchers accepted
No
Financial aid offered
Yes.
School-based aid
Outside scholarships

Planning ahead

College preparation / awareness offered
College presentations or information sessions
Visiting teachers or lecturers from colleges
Notice an inaccuracy? Let us know!

3901 Shoal Creek Blvd
Austin, TX 78756
Website: Click here
Phone: (512) 206-4070

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