Connecting people and innovative practices in education.
Cultivating shared core values and entrepreneurial skills.
Championing students by preparing them for college, career, and life.
Under the leadership of Dr. Nancy Grayson, East Waco Innovative School Development, Inc. was awarded a charter by the Texas State Board of Education in March 1998. The academy opened as a public charter school in the fall of 1998 with 16 students in East Waco, an economically depressed area of the city.
Enrollment for the second year was 74, requiring a move to a one-story building on J.J. Flewellen, which grew from the initial enrollment of pre-k – 2nd to the current pre-k – 4th. Land was donated, foundations were approached, and the building process began so that space could be completed for the fall of 2000 when 122 students would be enrolled. In honor of the support of the Rapoport Foundation, the school was named Audre and Bernard Rapoport Academy. Enrollment for the fall of 2001 (Pre K through 4th grade) was 134. After renovating a 17,000 sq ft building on Quinn Campus in 2003, Quinn Middle School was opened - 6th through 8th grade. Collaboration with the Doris Miller YMCA on Quinn Campus created a partnership that provided students with state-of-the-art exercise and gymnasium facilities.
Because of the success of the students, the Academy was awarded the second charter by the State Board of Education to develop a high school on the Quinn Campus in 2006. The high school was awarded ECHS designation, as part of the Texas High School Project through the Communities Foundation of Texas funded by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and Michael and Susan Dell Foundation. Rapoport is a S.T.E.M School, focusing on science technology engineering and math. Two additional Quinn Campus buildings were renovated to house high school students (Math &Science and the Annex). The high school was named Meyer High School, in honor of Paul and Jane Meyer for their support of the Academy.
A second elementary school in North Waco (on MacArthur) opened in 2012, creating an additional pathway to serving 68 students per grade level in high school. In 2013, the former Grant Hall building on Quinn Campus was repurposed into a cafeteria and classrooms for middle and high school students, becoming the Vance Dunnam Creative Arts Center. Rapoport's newest addition (2015) is the Bishop Joseph Gomez Administration Bldg. in the center of Quinn Campus. The beautifully renovated building now houses 17 classrooms, a band hall, a small administration wing and the original Paul Quinn College "tigers" on the stairwell wall! With the addition of the Gomez classrooms, the Annex building transformed from a high school building into a fifth-grade center, housing all 4 sections of 5th. In 2016, the district enrollment increased to 800+ students.
Rapoport Academy focuses on Science Technology Engineering Art and Math. The Academy has also expanded the scope of targeted STEAM curriculum from pre-K through 12th grade including hands-on, creative, engineering projects with opportunities for competition in internal events and external teams such as robotics and Future Cities.
Rapoport has partnered with Texas State Technical College (TSTC) to be an Early College High School (ECHS). This enables eligible students to start college classes as early as 9th grade and possibly earn an Associate’s degree before finishing high school. Students are also able to take dual credit classes at McLennan Community College (MCC). The expectation is that all students will earn a minimum of 15 hours of college credit, take the SAT/ACT, complete a Senior thesis/capstone project, and be prepared to continue on a post-secondary pathway. In order for students to be academically and socially ready to start college classes in 9th grade, Rapoport focuses on preparing ALL students for college, beginning in Pre-K. Conversations focus on the year students start college (not when they complete high school). The curriculum is rigorous, challenging, and college-focused. Students learn inter and intra-personal skills that will help them be successful in high school, college, and beyond!
As a charter school, TEA has allowed Rapoport to cap enrollment both across the district and within a class. Each classroom (except for college courses) will have no more than 17 students (compared to the state average of 22). This allows for more targeted, enriching, and challenging coursework and personal contact between teacher and student. Each grade level maintains a maximum enrollment of 68, keeping the grade-level and campus communities small.
Respect, Responsibility, Integrity, Curiosity, Creativity, Hard Work. Our core values drive all we do at Rapoport Academy. From Board meetings to extracurricular activities to student clubs, the core values are at the forefront of decisions. Teachers and students alike use the core values to affirm personal choices or provide supportive correction. Students (and staff) learn to build and maintain their community through the core values. These standards are held constant from Pre-K through 12th grade, even with Alumni, as they move to college and career.
Success in life requires more than mastery of content (math, English, etc.). Public speaking, writing, building community, leadership, peer relationships, teamwork, group work, entrepreneurial skills, marketing, goal setting, college application processes, financial awareness, and a host of other 21st century skills are woven throughout the curriculum from pre-K through 12th grade.
The elementary campus has been recognized as one of 9 charter schools nationwide for their outstanding literacy program, as well as being two-time recipients of the Texas Educator's Excellence Award for teaching. The middle school was recognized for the Teaching Excellence award in 2007 and the high school was recognized for the same award in 2008. The Academy has also been the recipient of an $800K grant to disseminate best practices among charter schools (A+ Best Practices Program). And in 2008, R.A. was one of 3 state finalists for H-E-B’s Excellence in Education Award.
Everything we do at Rapoport Academy is guided by six core values: Respect, Responsibility, Integrity, Curiosity, Creativity and Hard Work. Staff and students are committed to these values, and they encourage one another to strive for them. Discipline and correction are carried out in reference to the core values so that students will understand how positive behaviors exemplify the values we hold.
Visit the enrollment page for information regarding the application process or contact Catrena Thomas (firstname.lastname@example.org) at 254-315-9198 or 254-754-8000 ext. 2010 to learn more about our district.
1020 Elm Ave., Bldg. 500
Waco, TX 76704
Phone: (254) 754-2288
Fax: (254) 714-1110
1020 Elm Ave., Bldg. 100
Waco, TX 76704
5th Grade Fax:
2200 MacArthur Dr.
Waco, TX 76708
Fax: (254) 757-0405
2000 J.J. Flewellen
Waco, TX 76704
Fax: (254) 799-4191