What is ATI?


Virtual School



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Academy of Thought and Industry at San Francisco

Discover your individual path to excellence

We are a modern Montessori-inspired middle and high school in San Francisco, CA delivering a powerful education for independence, to develop curious, self-motivated adolescents who thrive in school and in life. Address: 2690 Jackson St, San Francisco, CA 94115. Phone: 415-683-5459. E-mail: sanfrancisco-admissions@thoughtandindustry.com

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Welcome to the future of middle and high school education!

ATI San Francisco's middle and high school program is unique: a deliberately planned and charted curriculum of foundational skills that open a greater and greater number of possible paths. Our students don’t just memorize—they understand, apply, and integrate knowledge to pursue their own passions!

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What kind of student is a good fit for ATI San Francisco?

  • High-achieving students who are looking for an intellectually-challenging school
  • College-bound students looking to get into competitive institutions
  • Ambitious teens looking for a small, private school and a more personalized learning environment
  • Homeschooled or virtual school students looking for more opportunities to socialize and excel
  • Students who are looking for a supportive and accepting community
  • Advanced students looking for a Montessori-inspired middle and high school
  • Gifted and Talented students looking for an alternative to public high school

Why Choose ATI San Francisco?

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Academic Rigor for the Real World

Students are challenged and get the preparation they need to be successful in school and life. Our graduates go on to college, create their own companies, and become global citizens.

  • Students do real work in the world
  • They serve as a productive members of the community
  • They realize their natural desire for independence
View Student OutcomesDownload the Program Guide

We foster a love of learning

Learning is a lifelong pursuit, and we help students discover their own love of learning and watch as it motivates them to expand their knowledge.

Explore AcademicsRead Parent Testimonials
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Intentionally Small Classes

AT ATI San Francisco, we choose to have small class sizes because we believe that is the best way to give students the personalized attention – through our unique teaching and coaching structure – that they need to grow and explore.

In a small school community, our students learn and practice self-governance, interdependence, and conflict resolution, gaining a sense of ownership and pride for the community around them.

Explore our Campus and Student Life
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Learn by doing, not by lecturing

Our Montessori-inspired learning pairs learning academic foundations with real life skill building. Dr. Montessori emphasized that teens should do real work: not just in school, but fully in the world. At ATI San Francisco, we remove the artificial barrier between the vocational and the avocational; what's required for class and what's chosen for life.

View our High School CurriculumMontessori Education
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One-on-One Coaching

Every ATI San Francisco student is paired with a coach, who meets one-on-one to help define the student's values, set goals, take risks, and chart their own path. The coaching curriculum has been built by educational experts and psychologists to support the process of self-creation that is so fundamental to adolescence. The coaching process emphasizes:

  • Self-worth
  • Self-efficacy
  • Self-creation
Learn more about Coaching

Small school communities, globally connected

ATI San Francisco is a tight-knit community that is also connected to a global network, allowing students to learn from industry experts, take part in unique electives, find mentors in your field, and connect with peers around the country and world.

All ATI Schools
Accreditation by Cognia and WASC

The Academy of Thought and Industry San Francisco has received accreditation by Cognia™ and WASC, the Accrediting Commission for Schools Western Association of Schools and Colleges. Earning accreditation from the Cognia Global Accreditation Commission means that the system and all of its domestic and international schools are accredited, and that ATI is recognized across the nation as meeting the Cognia Standards of Quality. ACS WASC accredits elementary and secondary schools; non-degree granting adult schools; and supplementary education programs.

What Parents are Saying

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ATI is a positive, necessary, well-crafted and refreshing alternative to traditional "big box" school teaching methodology. We found it an ideal fit for our child who benefitted from their empathetic and open minded approaching to education which fosters a self-motivated mindset. I can happily and enthusiastically endorse their program for the positive impact it has had on our son.

Robert T.

ATI San Francisco Parent

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My son knew within 90 minutes of speaking with Michael Strong (Founder) that ATI, SF was where he wanted to engage in learning. The traditional system of education was just not working for him. ATI has a very distinct way of making a child feel seen, heard and valued. After only 3 months of being at ATI, I saw a big change in my son’s demeanor - a confident, bright-eyed boy emerged. I can attribute this to the quality of the connections this school has invested in... between faculty and students and amongst the students themselves. Connections that can not be replaced nor duplicated by anything electronic.

M. F.

ATI San Francisco Parent

two ati san francisco students sitting at a table working with a laptop experiment

The Academy of Thought and Industry is like a Trade School for CEOs. Really it is much more than that because the school inspires students with a clear trajectory toward how to create a magnificent life at the intersection of their passions and skills. I found ATI during a deep search for the right environment for my two very different gifted children who bring unique talents to the world, that were lost in public school’s common core.

Michelle T.

ATI San Francisco Parent

Frequently Asked Questions

We charge tuition on a monthly basis during the 10 months the school year is in session. You can find the monthly price displayed on the tuition rate sheet. You’re also locking in the rates that you see displayed for future years.

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Student Outcomes

ATI San Francisco’s ultimate goal is to create students who thrive: living happy, fulfilled, and productive lives. We work with each student to identify their own values, set specific goals, and learn how to achieve them. This process gives them a sense of accomplishment, and prepares them for a variety of paths in life.

Many of our students choose to pursue higher education, and to date we have a 100% placement rate for college-bound seniors. In addition to their coach and guides, students work with a full-time, licensed college counselor.

Here is where you will find some of our recent ATI graduates:

Meet ATI San Francisco's School Leaders and Guides

In Montessori education, a guide is a teacher, but not a teacher in the way that's presented in a traditional school model. A Montessori teacher, or Guide, is a facilitator who journeys alongside students in the process of learning and self-construction and guides them toward their innate human potential.

Our Team

Assistant Head of School

Maria Adamo

Assistant Head of School

Maria is originally from the United Kingdom, and spent 12 years living and working in Italy before moving to the United States. She loved living and working where Maria Montessori had such a historical presence, and where she wrote her first book. Her educational background includes a Bachelor of Arts in International Business Studies and an Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) teaching diploma for ages 3-6 from the Montessori Training Center in Perugia, Italy. She has completed additional certificate courses in teaching language arts to young learners (with an emphasis on grammar and phonics). While English is her mother tongue, she is also fluent in Italian and possesses basic proficiency in French. In her free time she enjoys writing, reading, visiting art exhibitions, and traveling.

Middle School Humanities Guide

Jessica Lane

Middle School Humanities Guide

After Jessica Lane received a bachelor’s degree in Broadcast Journalism and Documentary Film with a Minor in Peace Studies from Chapman University, she became dedicated to exploring the process of personal-growth and the gap in adolescent self-development support. Jessica became certified in mindfulness, integrative wellness and life coaching, yoga, and therapeutic drumming, and began teaching youth using these techniques. She then decided to earn her Masters in Teaching and her Single Subject Credential in English from Loyola Marymount University. Jessica is currently a student in the LMU Masters in Education program. She has worked one-on-one and in class settings with diverse groups of students from Montessori Schools to Boys and Girls Clubs to homeschool organizations. Jessica now focuses on creating course curricula from the lens of mindfulness and individualized learning to produce an atmosphere of thriving individual development, and integrative, improved education programs. She is excited to be guiding Humanities at Academy of Thought and Industry in San Francisco. She looks forward to providing self-directed, activity-based lessons that encourage self-exploration and community awareness along with a culture of work and knowledge so that the next generation can cultivate thriving communities and healthy change.

High School Science Guide

Thomas Estus

High School Science Guide

Thomas earned his B.S. in Bioenginering - with a minor in math - from California Lutheran University, and his PhD in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Connecticut. Before starting at the Academy of Thought and Industry, he served as a Submarine Officer in the United States Navy. He is an avid musician and loves teaching interdisciplinary projects to help develop confidence and autonomy in his students.

Middle School STEM Guide

Nick Wagner

Middle School STEM Guide

Nick Wagner is an alumni of K-8 Montessori education and has received a Bachelor’s of Applied Sciences in Environmental and Outdoor Education from the University of Minnesota Duluth. During his studies, he worked with schools, community centers, and private entities providing opportunities for students to explore the natural world and further their knowledge of the sciences and themselves. As a Program Director for an Environmental Learning Center, a Wilderness Therapy Instructor, and an Environmental Science Educator, Nick has guided students of all levels to better understand life sciences, earth and space sciences, ecosystems, engineering, climate and Social-Emotional Learning through adventure education, therapeutic education, and hands-on science curriculum. By learning and inspiring students, he has found his love for teaching through inquiry-based experiential and kinesthetic methods that engage all learners and inspire lifelong learning. Nick is excited to foster the skills, knowledge and experiences that the Montessori model has brought him for his students and future generations.

High School Humanities Guide

Kyli Brown

High School Humanities Guide

Kyli Brown, a multilingual globe-trotter and passionate educator, holds a Bachelor's degree in French and a minor in History. She also holds a Master's degree in International Policy Studies, with a double major in French studies. Living in eight different countries and teaching in four of them, she brings a rich global perspective to the classroom. She has a keen interest in international languages, which she's made a significant part of her life and career. Being particularly intrigued by alternative education models and methods within the U.S, Kyli employs a student-centered, inquiry and project-based approach in her teaching practice. With strong convictions about the necessity of critical thinking skills and media literacy, she aims to prepare her students for academic success but also for informed citizenship in an ever-changing world. Her areas of teaching and learning interest are History and Philosophy to Literature, International Relations, Political Science, and Sociology. Her hobbies include hiking, practicing martial arts, and traveling. She enjoys sci-fi and speculative fiction, and she writes fiction and studies languages in her free time.

High School Math Guide

David Winters

High School Math Guide

David Winters has always had a passion for mathematics, and used that interest in a wide variety of fields. After finishing his undergraduate degree in economics from the University of Southern California, and an MBA from Pepperdine, he started his professional life as the owner and CEO of radio stations. After owning and operating several different stations with different formats, he sold his business in 2016 and transitioned to education in order to share his passion for mathematics with others. He has taught middle and high school math at several schools in California, and has trained and coached high school and college swimming and basketball.

Start your journey with us

Learn about ATI by attending one or more of our upcoming events and virtual info sessions
Consider a attending Shadow Day on campus to experience a day in the life of an ATI student
Submit your student application to ATI, which includes the option for financial aid (if necessary)
Work with Admissions to prepare for your first day of school! We can't wait to have you join our community
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Take a school tour

ATI San Francisco is situated at 2690 Jackson St, San Francisco, CA 94115. We'd love for you to come and visit!

Attend a program overviewBook a Tour

Experience school on your terms

Join a school community designed to support your education with coaching, small classes, and a commitment to our core values. Engage in deep study and personal exploration as a student at ATI.

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Visit Higher Ground Education to learn more about our mission to make learner-centered education the mainstream.

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