Friday, July 21, 2023

Business Spotlight: Home Academy

Home Academy, a new, unique and innovative non-traditional school, offers an exceptional educational experience for students from Kindergarten through Eighth Grade.

Crystal and Liz are two sisters and
parents of school-aged children
who are the founders of the new
Home Academy, a unique and
innovative non-traditional school
which starts this fall.
Located at 15 Main St. in Gray, the mission of Home Academy is to provide a nurturing and supportive learning environment that goes beyond traditional methods. Home Academy’s founders are two sisters, Crystal and Liz, of school-aged children who are frustrated by the limitations of the public school system and seek an educational approach catered to the unique needs of their family.

“We believe in cultivating critical thinking, problem-solving, creativity and the overall growth of each child,” the sisters said. “At Home Academy, we strive to foster a love for education, empowering students to become lifelong learners and future leaders. We are starting this together. We are both entrepreneurs and have experience with business startups. We both have a huge desire to do something better for our children.”

They said they were inspired to create Home Academy after they witnessed how their children were not receiving the individualized attention that they required in a system overly focused on standards and test scores. After exploring various alternative schools and private schools in Maine without finding the right fit, Crystal and Liz felt compelled to create their own educational haven where their children and others could flourish.

Driven by their vision, the sisters embarked on the journey of establishing the Home Academy homeschooling program with a goal of creating a safe and nurturing space where children could feel safe, valued, and free to be themselves. They envisioned an environment that allowed kids to explore their passions, learn in areas that interested them, spend less time on technology, and embrace the wonders of the outdoors.

Instruction at Home Academy begins this fall with a staff of certified teachers.

“We believe in a lot of outdoor learning, project-based learning, as well as a focus on social -emotional development as it is essential to a child’s success. Every child will receive a book called the Big Life Journal. Filled with teaching about affirmations, self-confidence, dreams and so much more,” the sisters said. “We are going to spend the first two weeks getting to know one another. We believe that deeper connections and friendships will foster true respect for one another and a more family-type environment that we want Home Academy to have. We want our students to feel like they are coming home. They feel safe, appreciated, and have a love for education.”

Mindfulness and positive self-talk are integral parts of the Home Academy philosophy which aims to equip students with tools for emotional well-being and resilience, enabling them to navigate challenges and cultivate a healthy mindset.

“We are excited to incorporate the Big Life Journal into our program,” the sisters said. “The Big Life Journal helps children develop strong Social-Emotional Learning and growth mindset skills through inspiring stories, colorful illustrations, and engaging guided activities.”

As a non-profit school, the emphasis will be small class sizes, individualized learning, and an entrepreneurship program for students.

“We will prioritize giving children the freedom to explore their interests and passions,” the sisters said. “Our curriculum allows for flexibility, enabling students to delve into subjects that inspire them and pursue their unique talents. This freedom nurtures a genuine love for learning, as students actively engage in their education and take ownership of their academic journey.”

Many Home Academy classes will be offered outside.

“The majority of our learning will take place outdoors, embracing the wonders of nature as an extension of our classroom,” the sisters said. “Outdoor education not only promotes physical activity and a connection to the environment, but also enhances creativity, critical thinking and problem-solving skills.”

Home Academy is currently enrolling students for fall 2023 and availability is limited. Enrollment may be completed on the school’s website at

For questions about Home Academy, send an email to, visit or find them on Facebook under Home Academy. <

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