Enrollment FAQs

When and where can I apply for DREAM Academy?

We are currently accepting applications for the 2018-2019 school year and interested families may apply online

Who can apply?

DREAM Academy is a state charter school of choice, meaning any student in grades K-6 residing in the state of Georgia may apply to attend.

Do I have to pay for my child to attend DREAM?

No, charter schools are public schools and do not charge tuition.

Does submitting an application guarantee enrollment?

An application does not guarantee acceptance to DREAM Academy. Acceptance into the school is through a random selection process. If the number of applications for a specific grade exceeds available openings in that grade, a lottery will be held. Once the number of available spots is filled, the remaining students will be randomly selected for their position on a waitlist. 

How does the lottery system work?

A lottery was not necessary for the 2018-2019 school year. When it is necessary to hold a lottery, names are drawn by grade, beginning with kindergarten and ending with 6th grade until all spots are filled. A certified third-party entity will conduct and certify the lottery.

Every student with a complete application submitted by the deadline is entered into the lottery. All names, regardless of day or time of applying, have an equal chance of being selected. 

The names drawn during the lottery will be offered a seat at DREAM Academy for the following year but must confirm their spot within two weeks of being notified of their acceptance. If students do not accept their spot, students on the waitlist will be offered a seat in the classroom. 

Are there enrollment priorities?

Priority for enrollment is given in accordance with the charter contract, approved by the state. Enrollment priority is given to the following groups of applicants and in the following priority:

  • A sibling of a student enrolled in DREAM Academy
  • A student whose parent or guardian is a full-time teacher, professional, or other employee at DREAM or is a member of the governing board.

What if my child is placed on the waitlist?

Students selected through the random lottery are given two weeks to confirm their acceptance. If students do not accept their spot, students from the waitlist will be offered the opportunity to enroll, in the order they were placed on the waitlist. These students will have a set time period in which to complete the enrollment process before the open spot is offered to the next name on the waitlist. Waitlist positions are not secured from year to year.

What if I miss the open enrollment period, but still wish my child could attend DREAM?

Any student who applies after the initial application period will complete an open application. Additional applications will be accepted on a first-come, first-serve basis until all open seats are filled. 

DREAM Charter Academy FAQs

What is a state charter school of choice?

A state charter school is a public school of choice that operates under the terms of a charter, or contract, with the State Charter Schools Commission of Georgia. They are governed by an independent, non-profit board of directors rather than a local board of education. While charter schools have some flexibility when it comes to state and local school regulations, they are still required to teach the Georgia standards, and they receive this flexibility in exchange for a higher degree of accountability for academic achievement, sound financial management and organizational stability.

Most charter schools have a focus. What is DREAM Academy’s focus?

DREAM Academy will provide an arts-and music-integrated curriculum through project-based learning to build students’ capacity for conceptual thinking, inquiry, analysis, interpretation, self-expression and self-esteem.

What kind of curriculum does DREAM offer?

DREAM Academy offers an Authentic Arts Integration (AAI) curriculum, which provides standards-based instruction while exposing students to a wide range of fine arts in elementary school, focusing students on areas of strength in middle school and having students specialize in their creative pathway of choice in high school. The academic framework pulls from approaches based on the Higher-Order Thinking Schools (HOTS) approach which is to “promote teaching and learning in, about, and through the arts in a democratic setting.” The program will build higher-order thinking skills in students through strong arts, arts integration and democratic practice. Read more about our academic approach.

What grade levels are offered at DREAM Academy?

Beginning in August 2018, DREAM will serve grades K-6. Each year the school will be expanded by one grade level to ultimately create a K-10 school. 

What does DREAM provide that other schools cannot?

DREAM Academy is proud to offer a choice to parents and students in the Macon-Bibb community and surrounding areas. Families can choose DREAM regardless of their zip code. Additionally, because of the flexibility from certain state and local regulations, DREAM is able to customize its curriculum to offer an innovative education that expands access to music, creative arts, leadership and entrepreneurship programming enabling students to express a deeper understanding of academic subject matter. 

Is transportation provided?

Transportation is not provided. Families who enroll their children at DREAM are responsible for making arrangements for their own transportation.

Where will DREAM be located?

The school will be located at 151 Madison Street, Macon, GA 31201

Can charter schools select their students?

Because charter schools are public schools, they must adhere to the same open admission and enrollment standards as traditional public schools. Charter schools may not select their students or deny admission to any applicant as long as there is space for that student within the school’s approved capacity. Charter schools are not allowed to have admission criteria such as passing a test or having a certain grade point average.

Can charter schools give priority enrollment to certain groups?

Charter schools are typically granted certain legally allowable enrollment preferences outside of the random lottery process. Allowable preferences typically include siblings of an enrolled student, a student whose parent or guardian is a member of the governing board or is a full-time teacher, professional or other employee at the school.

Who is on the board of directors?

The DREAM board is composed of talented and experienced community members who each bring a distinct skill set that meets a need for the school and who are passionate about the mission of DREAM. Our board members reside in various counties around the state to represent our school’s broad geographic reach.  Currently, the board includes: Paula Adams, Karla Redding-Andrews, Betsy Fitzgerald, Teresa Griffith, Myrtle Habersham, Cass Hatcher, Sharon Hutchings, Lisa Love, Eric Manson, Elbert McQueen, Starr H. Perdue, Tim Regan-Porter. Read more about each board member.  

Is DREAM part of the Otis Redding Foundation?

The idea to create a school to integrate music and arts into a rigorous curriculum was a vision from the success of music programs provided through the Otis Redding Foundation. Although the Otis Redding Foundation is an important strategic partner of DREAM Academy, it is one of many. At DREAM, we believe parents and community partners play a vital role in the life of the school and are always looking for additional partners to join us, so we can continue to provide the best resources, tools and strategies to expand our students’ learning experiences.