Location: South Austin
3207 W Slaughter Lane
Austin, TX 78748
Students served: Ages 3–6 (Primary); ages 6–9 (Lower Elementary, 1st–3rd grade); ages 9–12 (Upper Elementary, 4th–6th grade)
Current enrollment: 120; now enrolling for 2019–2020 Lower and Upper Elementary Programs
Philosophy/model: Since 1991, Parkside Community School’s mission has been for each child to become an independent, self-reliant person, aware of the interrelated nature of all life, with the skills necessary to achieve their own goals and make a positive contribution to society. In order to realize this mission, Parkside's curriculum and culture are based largely on the developmental philosophy and educational methods of Dr. Maria Montessori. The result is a beautiful learning environment that nurtures the whole child and provides a vibrant, loving community for the entire family.
Special features: Nestled on 12 magical acres in South Austin, Parkside Community School serves a diverse group of children and families and offers them a variety of Simple Gifts, including the gift of deep connection to the outdoors through natural playscapes, hiking trails, and annual campouts; the gift of music through weekly school-wide sing-alongs and guitar lessons for Elementary children; the gift of culture through visual and fine art lessons, performance opportunities, and Spanish lessons for Elementary children; and the most precious gifts of true community, lasting friendships, and a lifelong love of learning.
Schedule: Primary Half-Day, 8:30am–12:30pm; Primary Full-Day, 8:30am–2:30pm; Lower and Upper Elementary, 8:30am–3pm. Early Arrival from 7:30 to 8:15am and After-School care until 5:30pm are available for all full-day programs. Parkside Community School follows the AISD school calendar with limited exceptions for parent-teacher conferences and staff development days.
Tuition: Please visit the Parkside Community School website for tuition and fee information. Partial tuition assistance is available for qualifying families.
Contact: Shannon Thompson, Director of Admissions | firstname.lastname@example.org | 512-472-2559
Each listing in this alphabetical directory gives you a snapshot of a small, independent, alternative school in the Austin area.
This ever-expanding list spans several pages, with navigation buttons at the bottom. Clicking on the name of a school will take you to its own website. To easily find schools by geographical area, see our Alt Ed Maps page. If you know of a school that’s missing from this directory, please drop a note here, and see Alt Ed Austin’s criteria for “alternative” and “school.” You may also be interested in our directories of other recommended schools (which are mostly larger or more specialized or religiously oriented), as well as special programs for children and adults.
Full disclosure: Alt Ed Austin founder Teri Sperry has ties with several of the schools listed on this site. Her child has attended two of them. She has friends and collaborators who direct, teach at, or are otherwise involved in others. Some programs choose to advertise from time to time on Alt Ed Austin as Sponsoring Partners. She firmly believes that all of the schools featured on this site (including the ones to which she has no personal connection and those from which she receives no advertising fees) are great choices for some kids, each for different reasons.