Founder & Director at Acera School
Courtney Dickinson is a passionate educator with a strong belief in public service and innovation in education. Initially certified as a teacher, Courtney spent the first 15 years of her career as a culture architect and leadership consultant for high-growth organizations. After seeing her own son encounter limitations in his education, Courtney realized that in order to get the teaching environment she envisioned, she had to build a school from scratch.
Ten years later, the Acera School is now a microcosm of what is possible in education: a progressive school with a specific focus on STEM, inquiry-based learning, and systems thinking, and where teachers are facilitators of hands-on discovery.
Through Courtney’s relentless entrepreneurial drive, Acera has grown from a makeshift school in a rented church basement to a financially secure non-profit in its own building that employs 50+ staff, enrolls 130-150 day students, and hosts 500+ after school and summer program kids.
In 2016, Courtney launched Acera Education Innovations (AceraEI), a public outreach division dedicated to helping public schools transform STEM education by providing access to and training in Acera’s “10 Tools to Transform Schools.” As AceraEI’s executive director, Courtney leads partnerships with public school districts to define the right curricula, tools, and school success dashboard measures that will transform student experiences at school.