Cascades Academy Independent School PK-12

Quick Facts

Mission Statement

Cascades Academy is an engaged, vibrant community that weaves challenging academics with experiential learning to inspire socially responsible individuals ready for a diverse and changing world.

Core Values & Philosophy

Cascades Academy is a student-centered community. The question of what is best for students is at the heart of what we do. Our core values are Community, Challenging Academics, Experiential Learning, Critical Thinking, and Creativity.

Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion

Cascades Academy seeks to create a safe, nurturing community where we honor our unique selves, embrace the diverse perspectives and backgrounds of others, and promote social responsibility both within the school and beyond.


Cascades Academy was founded in 2003 in order to fulfill the need for an independent, PK-12 college preparatory school in Central Oregon. The school opened its doors on Studio Road in mid-town Bend with 61 students. In the fall of 2013, the school moved to a 21-acre campus in Tumalo, and added a third wing to its campus in 2017. In 2019, the school added an additional 18 acres to the campus, bringing the campus size to 39 acres.


The school is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization governed by a volunteer Board of Trustees.

Program Overview

Cascades Academy offers a challenging academic curriculum that integrates experiential learning, outdoor education, fine arts, and service learning. Small class sizes allow teachers to discover every student's unique potential - finding the right balance of challenge and support to help each student excel in a caring and dynamic community.


All grade levels have instruction in language arts, social studies, mathematics, science, Spanish, and fine arts. In addition we offer a variety of specialty classes including Storyline, fitness, electives, Maker class, robotics, and internships.

Experiential Learning

We often get asked about what "experiential learning" means and how do we "do it". To us, experiential learning means that the students are engaged in their learning. They are active. They are outdoors. They are solving problems independently and/or collaboratively. They fail or succeed, but they are not afraid to fail. They reflect about what they have learned, and the learning sticks because of their engagement. "Studying for the test" seldom supports learning that lasts. Active learning supports creativity and deeper understanding. This learning can take many forms, visit our Experiential Learning page to learn more.

Service Learning

100% of students participate in our service learning program. Community service partners include the The American Red Cross, Deschutes River Trail, Bend Community Center, Fox Hollow Retirement Community, Humane Society of Central Oregon, Upper Deschutes Watershed Council, and many other organizations. Students have the opportunity to choose the organizations with whom they would like to work, keeping them engaged in the service and dedicated to the outcomes.

Students & Faculty at a Glance

  • Grades: Pre-Kindergarten through 12th grade
  • Faculty and Staff: 46 full & part-time faculty and staff
  • Student Body: 235 (PK-12)
  • Target Class Size: 18 students


Cascades Academy is an accredited member of the Northwest Association of Independent Schools (NWAIS) and AdvancEd. Cascades Academy is also proud to be a member of the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS).