Our History

West End Academy was founded in July, 1971, as a tutorial service for elementary and high school students. The day school, as it currently exists, began in 1975 and has continued to serve the greater Knoxville area helping hundreds of students escape from what was potential education disaster.

West End Academy provides a state-approved curriculum leading to a high school diploma. Open to boys and girls in grades K-12, West End Academy specializes in Educational Recovery: reclaiming and making successful the lives of children who enroll in West End Academy, after they have experienced failure and frustration in other venues. By utilizing an exceptional faculty, a low student/teacher ratio, and extended class periods, the academy is able to provide individualized instruction. This helps build self-esteem and allows for measurable progress.

We will assist approximately 110 or more students during a calendar year. We also offer summer school and after-school tutoring. School policy permits admission at any time; past experience indicates a tendency for new student applications at each report card grading period. West End Academy students who develop satisfactory study skills and are successful with grades may be encouraged to return to their former school. Therefore, enrollment can fluctuate during the year since students can enter or leave at any given time. More than half our students spend the balance of their high school career with us, usually having entered in the ninth grade. Nearly 80% of our graduates have plans to go on to further their education and become contributing members of society. For these young people, a diploma gives them a start on becoming responsible young adults.

West End Academy is a 501(c) (3) non-profit, private school approved by the State of Tennessee and governed by a voluntary Board of Directors. West End Academy receives no funding from local, state, or federal tax revenues, and is dependent upon private grants, individual donations, and tuition. The amount of monthly tuition depends on several factors including family size, medical expenses, enrollment of other family members, casualty loss, and ability to pay. Every effort is made to help students in need with tuition assistance so that they may attend the academy.

Statement of Fulfillment

Since 1971, West End Academy has been extremely successful in helping thousands of students achieve their goals of positive educational attitudes, better grades, graduation from an accredited high school and additional education beyond high school.

Over 80% of our graduating seniors have plans to go on to college or other post high school educational experiences.

Vision & Values

Our vision is to help Knoxville & surrounding areas children whose educational needs are not otherwise being met.

We are aware of thousands of children in Knoxville & surrounding areas looking for success in education. West End Academy wants to be of help to these students. We are committed to fostering a supportive faculty and staff. We will encourage high academic achievement and maintain our interest in developing the individual child, so that he or she might realize their fullest potential as creations of God.

West End Academy welcomes applications for admission from children and does not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, color, religion, nationality, or ethnic origin in our admission policies, financial aid, or school activities.


Providing a safe and secure learning environment with open communication:
Designed more like a retreat center, the West End Academy (WEA) campus is the culmination of decades of experience about what constitutes a safe and secure learning environment for young people. Central to the secure learning environment is open and frequent communication between parents, teachers, administrators, and students.

Designer Education:
No one size fits all at WEA. Every student has an individual educational plan. This plan enhances the innate learning capacity of the student and reflects his or her unique leaning style, skills, and interests.

Success fosters success:
WEA teachers use this pillar to demonstrate to the students their own capability. Any work that is less than C-quality is an automatic do-over.

Building self-image and eliminating guilt and shame from education:
WEA places great value on individual worth and cherishes the differences that children and their cultures represent. WEA strengthens a student’s self-image through close interaction with faculty on a consistent and daily basis.

Family-friendly homework schedules:
Sufficient time is allowed during the school day for completion of daily homework assignments, allowing faculty to guide or tutor students who need additional assistance. This reduces stress on students and parents alike.

Individualized guidance by instructors:
WEA appreciates various learning styles of individual students. Instructors accommodate different styles in the assignment process by building success upon success.

A teacher for every 15 students:
Some students thrive in smaller settings. At WEA, student/teacher ratios are typically 15:1. This fosters a strong sense of community and strengthens developing social skills.

Providing consistent and caring discipline in the classroom and on the playing field:
WEA recognizes that an important aspect of healthy, balanced character development is the provision of a consistent and caring environment that includes discipline as needed and the acceptance of personal responsibility for actions and decisions.

Learning and fun:
The WEA program focuses on learning, but learning includes fun, extracurricular activities, and a high sense of camaraderie.

Values-driven school environment:
Central to WEA are the values of honesty, integrity, personal responsibility, respect, and hard work, which are modeled on a daily basis and expected of each student.

Rewards and incentives:
WEA provides rewards and incentives that encourage positive results, including privileges earned on a point system and early Friday dismissal when work is complete. In addition to recognizing academic and sports achievements, seniors take an annual trip to celebrate their success.

Credit transfers:
Students who wish to return to public schools are able to do so with full credit transfers because of WEA’s accreditation with the state of Tennessee. Students do not lose credit when a family must relocate, or when a student elects to return to his or her former school.

Fully accredited by the State of Tennessee:
Appropriate teaching methodologies are prescribed and administered by skilled and dedicated teachers for each individual student, utilizing the curriculum prescribed by the State of Tennessee.