How We Compare


We know families interested in finding the best private school for their child are judicious in their search and that you likely have other excellent schools on your short list.  You might be wondering how Harrisburg Academy matches up to other schools in the area, and we welcome the comparison.  We believe that our school and its leadership is as mission-driven and strong, if not stronger, than it was when we opened our schoolroom doors in 1784.  Here are a few highlights that demonstrate the advantages of an Academy education.


Central Penn Parent Family Favorite Best Private School



In an educational climate in which local schools are cutting programming, the Academy continues to add opportunities for its students -- opportunities enhanced thanks to the Academy's small class sizes.  From its Centers for Experiential Learning & Innovation to hands-on lab science starting in Kindergarten to group strings lessons in our preschool (Junior Kindergarten) and Kindergarten, the Academy is committed to setting the bar for learning "how it should be."  Students at the Academy are not just a number -- they are each known.



Globally Minded

Our school may be physically located in Central Pennsylvania, but the reach of our community extends across the globe.  At the Academy, we define global education as the study and discovery of worldwide culture and philosophy including the subject areas of art, science, music, and history.  This approach instills lifelong learning skills and stimulates a desire and enthusiasm to ask questions and to seek new knowledge from a global perspective.  One way our emphasis on global education is demonstrated is through our success with the International Baccalaureate Diploma program and introduction of the IB Scholarship for Summer Study (click here to read more about our scholarship recipients' experiences) for our high school-aged students. This global point of view also is evident in our student population (including 157 international students from 28 countries since 1989!), our curriculum, and our global outreach.


Personal Attention

Approximately 316 students; Age 3 to 12th grade

Faculty-to-Student Ratio:

Harrisburg Academy, 1:7; Cumberland Valley, 1:17

College Counseling:
Harrisburg Academy has a full-time counselor dedicated exclusively to college counseling, with a counselor to student ratio of 1:93. Most public schools do not have college counselors at all.

*Forty-five percent of our faculty has attained or is in the process of obtaining an advanced degree, including Ph.D., M.Ed., and M.A.




Education is a personal learning journey at the Academy – a journey that is challenging and nurturing at the same time.  Our public school colleagues must focus on enabling a group of children to meet an established set of standards determined to be "proficient."  On the contrary, as a small school community, the Academy is able to maximize the ways in which our families benefit from being small.  Most importantly, our faculty and staff know each child, focus on educating the "whole child" through the liberal arts, effectively partner with students and their parents, and achieve an environment that supports deep, meaningful learning with a globally minded perspective.



Independent Governance

As a member of the National Association of Independent Schools, the Academy joins over 1,800 schools in the United States which provide high-quality and individualized education -- the best private school education available. Although each independent school is driven by a different educational mission, we all share a commitment to providing a safe environment in which young people not only pursue academic excellence, but also learn the importance of hard work, leadership, personal responsibility, and good citizenship.  Click here for more on the value of independent schools.


Niche Best Schools

Central Location

Academy students represent 27 school districts and seven counties. Students arrive by public school bus, Academy-sponsored school bus, car, and carpool. For many of our students, the commute time – especially if by bus – is no longer than if they attended a nearby public or parochial school. You may ask is the drive really worth it when nearby schools are good enough?  The answer to this question is not the logistics; rather, it is the premise that local public schools are providing a "sufficient" experience.  We contend, what if “good enough” really isn’t?

Harrisburg's Only Independent School,
Serving Students Preschool - 12th Grade.

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© 2019 Harrisburg Academy, All Rights Reserved
10 Erford Road | Wormleysburg, PA 17043
Tel: 717-763-7811 | Fax: 717-975-0894 | Contact Us