Testimonials on our No Homework Policy

by VDA Alumni

It was definitely a concern: ‘How am I going to cope with the amount of homework that is given to me in high school if VanDamme Academy didn’t give me much?’ Even though VDA didn’t administer much in the way of homework, they absolutely taught me how to finish assignments with a purpose and a sense of time-management. I was able to take those tools and apply them to my current curriculum, and overall, my homework load is not ridiculously stressful.”

“The education that VanDamme Academy offers is like no other. They don’t bother with any of the ‘fluff’ — they teach you how to read, how to write, how to speak, and, most importantly, how to think and ask questions independently.”
— Mattingly Messina (currently attending UC Berkeley)
At VanDamme Academy, I gained the foundations of an independent mind. I learned that ideas have consequences, are important, and are worth pursuing. I learned to think logically, to allow myself no half-formed knowledge or superficial understanding. I learned to appreciate great literature, to analyze facts scientifically, to write with clarity. And I learned that the sublime is possible to the man who thinks.”
— Evan Storms (Stanford graduate, Harvard fellow)
VanDamme’s focus on conceptual understanding and on the intellectual development of the students as rational thinkers sets it apart from any other elementary/junior high school I’ve seen.  I would never have gained the rational, logical thought process that I enjoy today without VanDamme Academy.

VanDamme instilled in me a love of learning and of knowledge.  This will help shape who I am for the rest of my life.

Additionally, VanDamme’s understanding that school, not home, was for school work allowed me to develop more fully in extra-curricular fields, i.e., athletics and music.”
— Troy Astorino (MIT Graduate, founder of Picnic Health)
Because we were treated as adults, we learned to think as adults.  But we were also allowed to be children, having no homework to worry about after school.”
— Casey Astorino (student at USC)
“The no homework policy was extremely beneficial to me, as it not only gave me time to perfect and hone my work, it also allowed me to reflect and think. It was so important to my growth as both a student and a person, and the time that I gained proved to be invaluable.

What this school really taught me was not what to think, but how to think, and the gift of this is the greatest I have ever received. It has prepared me for anything I might do or become, and I will forever be grateful.”
— Hannah Dawson (student at OCSA)