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About VSAA

Vancouver School of Arts and Academics is a school of choice where the arts are immersed in academic study. Students in sixth through 12th grade must apply and be accepted in order to attend.

At the school, they pursue a wide variety of learning opportunities ranging from subject exploration to advanced study. VSAA offers a complete and fully accredited middle and high school program including advanced levels of science, mathematics and foreign language. All students attend VSAA full-time. This means students take all academic and art classes on VSAA’s campus. The daily atmosphere of strenuous creative work, self-discipline, integrity and dedication prepares students for both college and future careers. In accordance with the vision of Vancouver Public Schools, VSAA’s goal is for graduates to “achieve literacy and appropriate core competencies, and become responsible and compassionate citizens.”

VSAA offers six art forms: dance, music, theatre, literary arts, visual arts and moving image arts. All students are expected to explore each art form but may choose to focus in one or more arts during their seven years at the school. Each student also has a teacher assigned who remains his or her advocate for seven years.

Professional artists and community leaders play an important role at the school, too. Students learn alongside working artists and also have field experiences in the community.

Located on Main Street in the city of Vancouver, Washington, and near the heart of the Portland, Oregon, metropolitan area, the Vancouver School of Arts and Academics is well-placed as a community arts center. The school offers a wide array of performance, studio and exhibition space to students and artists alike.

Mission

Vancouver School of Arts and Academics, a focused learning community, believes students learn best when arts and academics are integrated. Through collaboration and inquiry, individuals are challenged to think critically, creatively and artistically.

Philosophy

VSAA’s philosophy of learning grows out of a commitment to specific guiding principles. Students and staff alike come to this school knowing that the people here teach and learn with artistic and academic integrity.

Within the framework of those guiding principles, staff members and students constantly ask the fundamental questions which explore evidence of learning. In this school, students learn the value of individual commitment and respect for uniqueness because they live and learn every day with people who are inventive, receptive to new ideas, responsible and committed to the arts.

Frequently asked questions

What is required to apply to VSAA?2018-01-16T10:37:16-07:00

The application process requires four steps. Learn more about what’s involved.

Do students have to take all art forms? What if they just want to take drama? Or dance? Visual art? Etc.?2017-11-28T13:56:03-07:00

We are tasked with introducing and developing students both academically and in the arts. Students will experience all six art forms in their first three years at VSAA. After exploring each of them, they may choose to focus in one or more of these art forms.

What is advocacy?2017-11-27T15:42:06-07:00

At VSAA, every teacher serves as an advocate for 21-23 students, offering professional attention to each student. The advocate, in cooperation with the student and family, monitors academic progress and planning. Advocacy groups meet twice per week before or after lunch. Advocacy is considered part of the VSAA curriculum and attendance is required.

What music offerings are available at VSAA?2017-11-27T15:35:24-07:00

We offer vocal music, strings and instrumental music. We do not offer piano or guitar as part of our general curriculum.

Can outside activities count for dance or PE?2017-11-27T15:34:25-07:00

Dance is a required component of the VSAA curriculum and must be taken.

Do you have special education?2017-11-27T15:33:32-07:00

VSAA does have students in need of special education services. Through an inclusive model, students are given the necessary support to have a positive educational experience.

Are students in mixed classes or with students in their own grades?2017-11-27T15:32:46-07:00

Students are separated in their academic subjects into groups of sixth through eighth grade (blue team), ninth and 10th grade (red team) and 11th and 12th grade (yellow team).

Grade levels are integrated in our arts classes and through advocacy.

What is Core?2017-11-27T15:31:44-07:00

Teams of teachers who work together to help students learn mathematics, science, health, language arts and social studies with a focus on the arts. Coursework is directed to individual student needs and progress and related to a yearly theme.

Individual and group projects are a primary source of learning within Core.

Is there any tuition? What does it cost to attend?2017-11-27T15:29:18-07:00

There is no tuition if accepted to VSAA as we are a public school. There are still the general fees associated with all schools paid at the beginning of each school year.

Is VSAA a public school?2017-11-28T13:56:53-07:00

The Vancouver School of Arts and Academics is a public school. It is a full-day arts magnet of Vancouver Public Schools.

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