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ACTON ACADEMY 

SILICON VALLEY

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ABOUT

ABOUT US

  • Self-paced progression

  • Interdisciplinary, project-based curriculum

  • Portfolios + exhibitions not grades

  • Multi-disciplinary projects

  • Mix aged studios

  • Guides not teachers

  • Low learner to guide ratio – 1:13

  • No homework

MEET OUR TEAM

FOUNDER

MARIA FERRARI

Maria is a Senior Product Manager and Strategist in Biotechnology focused on Oncology Research and Development. She has worked in both large-scale organizations such as Google and Genentech, as well as cutting-edge start-ups where she has helped define and lead the strategic direction, process optimization, and organizational development. As the Founder of Acton Academy SV, Maria is focused on reimagining education for her own daughters and future generations to ensure children approach the real world with confidence, empathy, character, and a growth mindset. With her strong organizational development background, Maria takes the role of Founder at Acton Academy SV very seriously to ensure that things are running smoothly and productively. Maria, her husband, and their 4 daughters live in the Bay Area where they enjoy spending time as a family outdoors.

HEAD OF SCHOOL & EXPLORATION GUIDE

MUHAMMAD IQBAL

Mo is a former Wall St banker, business operator, entrepreneur and now a passionate educator. He holds a Bachelor's degree in Finance from the University of Georgia. For over a decade, Mo has had a love for teaching and mentoring young learners to help them be the best they can be in and out of the classroom.

 

By personally teaching his 1st-grade niece throughout the pandemic, he noticed the waning joy for learning, the unfostered curiosity, and the lack of preparation for thriving in the 21st century - especially social-emotionally. After that, he was compelled to tackle these problems for the learners in his community and pursued the opportunity as an Acton Guide. And of course, he is a big kid at heart who loves to have fun and inspire learning adventures every single day!

SPARK STUDIO GUIDE

LIBBY GALT

Libby brings over 20 years of experience in the field of education, with her most recent role being an educator at the innovative Google Children's Center. Libby brings the perspective and experience of a world traveler into the classroom. Her early experiences traveling the globe taught her patience, perspective, and a deeply ingrained sense of appreciation, all key qualities that she brings into the learning environments that she engages with. Because she has had a personal meditation and yoga practice for years, she brings mindful awareness to her work with young people and their families. She earned her undergraduate and Master’s degree in Human Development, with a focus on Families and Leadership in Education. She believes that young people will change the world by being in an environment with supportive adults who are not afraid to challenge them. She doesn’t accept the status quo and knows that when learners are put in charge of their own learning, they will develop a deep self-knowing, one that will transform themselves, each other, and the world. 

DISCOVERY STUDIO GUIDE

PEDRO MIOLA

Pedro has always been a naturally curious learner, driven by a wide range of interests. He is obsessed with bringing people to their “lightbulb moment,” regardless of age, background or interests. Pedro has spent the past 15 years working in diverse roles that have shaped him to be the most empathetic, infectiously energetic educator possible. His passion for teaching began early on while volunteering at Children’s Hospital summer camps and coaching soccer camps for the Seattle Sounders. Pedro graduated from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, with a double major in Chemistry and Hispanic Linguistics and Biology minor. He spent a few years working as a pharmacology researcher and as a surgical assistant for an orthopedic, ear, nose and throat surgery center before being accepted into medical school. Pedro opted to defer medical school and moved to Brazil to explore other opportunities. For two years, Pedro worked as the urban beekeeping team manager in Seattle and Portland, installing rooftop beehives downtown and educating the communities on the importance of pollinators and most recently as Chief of Staff in an early stage startup. 

HEAD OF ADMISSIONS & OPERATIONS

ERIKA K. CLARK

Erika is a proud San Francisco native who spent over a decade living and working throughout Europe, Latin America, Asia and the East coast. Throughout her career in education she has been instrumental in developing top performing global teams in sales, operations and marketing at senior director levels. 

Erika has consulted for various companies, including founding her own business & nonprofit foundation to support single parents in need. She has been invited to speak on panels, conferences and events around the world and loves motivating people to follow their passion, work hard and grow their businesses. She believes that the world is a better place when women are also at the table making decisions and in leadership roles.

Erika has a love for traveling, having visited nearly 65 countries and speaks several languages. She is a proud of alum of Les Roches International School of Hospitality Management in Switzerland and received her MBA from Glion Institute of Higher Education.

WHAT WE VALUE

The transformative learning process at Acton Academy Silicon Valley is designed to help our learners grow both in and out of the classroom. Each day is filled with opportunities to experience new educational and social situations to further development. Our guides create a safe and open setting, where they can encourage learners to explore the world around them.

01

Safety & Security

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02

Transparency

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03

Growth & Innovation 

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04

Team Work

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05

Community Outreach

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06

Craftsmanship

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FROM OUR FOUNDER

Welcome to Acton Academy Silicon Valley! My team an I have embarked on a journey together to offer an education experience that replaces the one-size fits all approach, and brings forward the unique gifts and talents each child has to offer. After years in the private school system, it became increasingly evident that our children were becoming disengaged, frustrated and bored. The spark, curiosity, and eagerness to know “why,” that you come to expect from a young child, was extinguishing. School became a place of competition rather than competency, where time for deep exploration isn’t part of the curriculum, and where failure is a weakness rather than part of the process. We knew children needed something different and we've made the radical change to find a better way.

We launched Acton Academy Silicon Valley to provide an environment for our own children and those in the community who want to take the magical journey to re-imagine their children’s education and to watch them grow into natural learners. A place where children will have the freedom to explore deeply, take chances, fall down and make mistakes as they become the best version of themselves.

Thank you for allowing us to share this journey with you. We can’t wait to see our new community grow.

- Maria Ferrari


Acton Academy Silicon Valley, Founder

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