WHO WE ARE
Forge is a paradigm-shift that educates every child as the unique human being that they are.
WE FORGE FUTURES
A Personalized Learning Model that nurtures each student along a path unique to their passions, talents, and aspirations.
WE LAUNCH LEADERS
A Forge graduate commences adulthood with clarity, confidence, passion, and capacity.
Why do we launch our youth into the adult world so inadequately prepared?
The traditional education system fails to uncover an individual’s unique talents and gifts. The system presupposes that students, and the ways in which they absorb information, are the same.
The endgame of the system is to “pass”, not to discover, explore or excel. It is no surprise that young people graduate with low self-confidence, without purpose and wander into adulthood on an uncertain path.
Within and across each sphere there are six competencies where skill and capacity are built:
Passions, Talents and Gifts
02SENSE OF PLACE
Connection and Perspective
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Technical and Trade
The ability to see what can be and possess the fortitude to make it happen
06PROFESSIONAL CAREER PATH
Like scaffolding, learning experiences build upon one another to unlock greater strength, passion, and mastery.
Our classroom is everywhere – inside and out.
Situated on 11 acres of central Oregon property, our classrooms vary in their architecture. Our outdoor spaces include an open-air classroom, an obstacle course and playground, and the surrounding property. The indoor learning spaces consist of two 26’ Native American Sioux tipis and an Innovation Lab.
Forge is earth centric in a digital world.
Our tipis and Innovation Lab are outfitted with the latest technology and infrastructure to ensure a technology forward educational experience. Our Innovation Lab is equipped with a 3D printer, laser cutter, robotic components and kits, sewing machine, woodworking tools, shop tools, computer workstations, and more.
Forge operates on a year-round learning calendar. We have a total of 190 days of learning with breaks and holidays immersed throughout the year.
We start our year in July with our two week Summer Institute. This is time spent team building and gaining understanding and fluency in a core set of constructs; photography, navigation, sketching/drawing, and practices in self-awareness. We then break and come back together in mid-August to commence our year.
We operate in 45-day learning cycles followed by 2-week breaks intended for restoration and reflection. Each integrated learning activity begins with the student bodybuilding background knowledge and conducting fieldwork. This is followed by individual areas of study that connect and integrate the broader theme. The evolution of our curriculum is based on our student’s experiences, knowledge, and passions. This scaffolding develops student confidence, skills, and engagement.
CURRICULUM LEARNING CYCLE
Our curriculum is an immersive process of integrated learning that not only helps the students learn, but learn how to learn.
The Forge calendar year begins with a 2-week Summer Institute for team building and gaining an understanding and fluency in a set of core constructs including photography, drawing, navigation, and self-expression. Students are giving a Forge backpack outfitted with topography maps, compass, digital cameras, sketchbook, pencils, and a yoga mat.
After this introductory 2-week immersion, the first 45-day learning cycle begins.
More than just educators, our teachers are catalysts for growth.
Our educators are Jackie and Todd LaFrenz. Both have taught in central Oregon for over 25 years and have always been huge proponents of educational reform and alternative learning models. Each was part of the founding team at Bend’s Seven Peaks School where they each taught for over 10 years.
Jackie was a founding team member of the Powell Butte Community Charter School where she held various positions; teacher, curriculum coordinator and principal. She has also taught 3rd-5th grade at several Bend LaPine schools.
Todd LaFrenze has been at Realms middle school for 13 years where EL education is the learning modality.
“Teaching at Forge enables us to share our passions for environmental science and outdoor adventure. We value and prioritize time spent on activities that help students develop a positive self-image. We guide students as they make academic, economic, environmental, technological, and career connections.”
– Jackie LaFrenz
TUITION AT FORGE
Forge operates on a year-round school schedule, thus the tuition calendar reflects this cycle. Our school year commences mid-July of each year.
Grades 4-12: $20,000
- Field trips (including overnight trips)
- Classroom technology
- Summer Institute, where each new student is provided a backpack that includes a digital camera, iPad, sketchbook with pencils/pens, compass, maps, first aid kit, and other items essential for building the Forge student experience.
Tuition is evaluated every year and any increases are set by January for the following year.
Forge offers the following tuition payment plans:
- Single Payment Plan: 100% of tuition is due May 31, 2021.
- Two-Payment Plan: 60% of tuition is due May 31, 2021, and 40% is due November 30, 2021.
- Monthly Payment Plan: Twelve monthly installments due on the 15th of each month from May 2021 through April 30, 2021. Please note there is a fee associated with this option.
FRIENDS OF FORGE
Forge Academy, llc is a for-profit organization focused on creating a new paradigm in education. We invite you to consider what supporting Forge would mean to our teachers and students.
Capital Investment Initiative
We have two highly customized educational experiences that are unique to Forge. The first is our Innovation Lab and the second is our Learning Expeditions and Experiences.
Our Innovation Lab is designed to accelerate the development of real-world skills and career exploration. Each student has the opportunity to experiment, prototype, tinker, and craft -individually as well as in teams. The lab is outfitted with mobile work tables, chairs, whiteboards, a robust technology infrastructure, filled with natural light and opens to the outside. The technology infrastructure supports a 3D printer, laser cutter, robotic components, sewing machine, computer workstations, woodworking tools, and shop tools.
Our students are intimately immersed in activities that involve being in nature and they regularly participate in Learning Expeditions (and Experiences) that take them away from the classroom and property. These experiences may be a day trip to a nearby national/state park or overnight trips that take students on ventures throughout Oregon and beyond. Each adventure supports the current curriculum topic or area of study. These expeditions are critical for making sense of one’s place in the world.
Forge 2021/2022 Capital Investment Essentials:
- 12 Person Passenger Van
- 10’ Cargo Trailer (Hauling mountain bikes, kayaks, camping gear, skis, etc.)
- Camping Equipment (Tents, cooking equipment, camping supplies)
- Innovation Lab (Structure, furnishings, and equipment)
- Edge Park & Playground (Team building ropes course, obstacle course)
The Forge Annual Fund is one of our most important fundraising initiatives. A robust Annual Fund allows us to continually push the edge regarding our education paradigm shift and directly funds our custom offerings. Tuition does not begin to support the costs of educating a Forge student, thus we ask our broad community to support this campaign and give a gift that is meaningful to them and respects individual financial circumstances.
Gifts to the Annual Fund make the following possible:
- Day and overnight field trips and travel experiences.
- Funds our Experts-in-Residence program where outside professionals and subject matter experts spend blocks of time teaching and educating our students on specific trades, crafts, arts, music, videography, athletics, and other relevant subject areas.
- Art and technology supplies as well as books and other resource materials.
- Tuition subsidies for qualified students allow for an enriching academic environment by exposure to alternative identities and perspectives.
All Annual Fund financial investments are a genuine gift to our student body.
Teacher Endowment Fund
We have a student-to-teacher ratio of 5:1. This is an essential component of the student/teacher experience.
Our Teacher Endowment Fund is set up to ensure our teachers are compensated and rewarded for continually bringing innovative ideas, thinking, and behaviors to Forge. The commitment they bring not only to the Forge experience but to each student is irreplaceable and will last a lifetime in the Forge student’s memory.
In addition, we bring in extra teacher support for some of our day trips and extended travel experiences. This is to ensure not only an immersed experience but that each student receives the necessary attention and has a safe experience.