Educational Options Consultations
Personalized Guidance in Assessing Your Child's Learning Options

All families and students begin here with a 90-minute consultation to help answer the following questions in addition to any others that you may have:

  • Is attending conventional school right for me?
  • What are my other options?
  • What would choosing an Independent Studies plan - either through a homeschooling charter, a public school, or through Ka-Lo Academy, mean for my life?
  • How available would my parents have to be?
  • How would I know if I'm learning?
  • When and where would I hang out with friends?
  • What if I'm not "motivated" to learn?
  • What about college?

Let us begin by telling you: self-directed learning reconnects people to their natural curiosity and desire to learn, and colleges love self-directed learners.


José Saramago Independent Studies Program
Mentor-Guided Self-Directed Learning

This program was named for autodidact, Jose Saramago, who won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1998.  Our independent studies does not adopt a traditional structure in which teachers give assignments and students go home to complete them.  Rather, we support our students in designing learning plans that are truly unique to their interests, styles, and goals. For that reason, every student's plan and schedule is different. Some students design schedules which are recognizable as "school" -- taking classes at a community college or online, and/or studying coursework with a friend or relative or on their own.  Other learners may immerse themselves in pursuing a passion, finding that life without classwork and homework opens opportunities for advanced studies of interests such as writing, music, sports, or veterinary care. Still others invent a more generalized education plan, including activities such as reading widely and becoming an active participants in community groups.

Upon approval, the independent studies program can conclude with our Septima Clark High School Diploma program.

If you're new to this learning paradigm, but intrigued, you might want to check out our Resources Section.


Septima Clark High School Diploma Program
Individualized Graduation Portfolios

Steeped in the movement for social justice through education, Septima Clark stands out in the forefront of self-motivation and resilience; our Ka-Lo Academy Diploma Program is named for her.  Throughout our program, students are encouraged to submerse themselves in their passions, choosing an internship to deepen their focus area and articulating the breadth of their high school learning journey, while gaining community support and skills for self-sufficiency.

Some students come to us practically ready to jump into this work -- they may be a few credits short of completion at their previous high school, or perhaps they are a mature independent learner looking for a way to start college or full time work in the ‘real world.’  In these cases, students may be able to complete our graduation package and portfolio fairly quickly.

Other students don't arrive with graduation in mind and can begin in our Jose Saramago Independent Studies Program until they are ready.

The diploma program runs from 6 to 18 months, depending on student readiness for graduation. Students may spend up to a year in the independent studies program before beginning the graduation phase of the program.

Our diploma program is a uniquely meaningful way to complete the high school years, from which you will graduate ready for young adulthood. The process offers a rich opportunity for self-reflection, planning, skill-building, and networking. Our graduates are proud, focused, and experienced; they are articulate about their readiness for the future and know how to do things that matter to them. They have evidence of their unique skills and mastery.

Requirements for graduating from Ka-Lo Academy include a 3-month internship, a mastery project, and written or other documentation of the student’s work and future plans.

Estimated completion time for the Septima Clark High School Diploma Program is 4 – 6 months. This is an estimate, as our program completion time can vary depending on the individual needs of the diploma candidate.