Below are some Frequently Asked Questions about Bay City Academy. If you do not see your question answered here, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Is Bay City Academy a private school? 

Bay City Academy is a public school academy, also called a charter school. There is no tuition, but parents do make an extra commitment when they choose to enroll their children here. They committ to partnering with us throughout their child's educational journey. Our operating funds come from the state of Michigan on a per-pupil basis. We receive the same amount per student as other local public schools.

What is a charter school? 

A charter school is authorized through Michigan law and the Department of Education. Two of the major differences between a charter school and a traditional public school are that we have no geographic boundaries and we are a school of choice. Our students attend Bay City Academy because their parents have elected to send them here.

Who holds Bay City Academy accountable? 

Like all public schools, we are accountable to the Michigan Department of Education and must abide by all laws, including participating in the state testing program. In addition, we are accountable to Lake Superior State University, which granted our charter. A representative of the university attends each of our school board meetings, reviews all of our documentation (including teacher certification) and makes unannounced visits to check on the quality of our program. Our highest level of accountability is to our students and their parents.

Do you offer programs for students with special needs?

Our program compliments gifted students, as well as students with special education needs. Anytime our students score high on initial assessments, we watch carefully and plan accordingly. Lower elementary students are provided accelerated instruction within their classroom, while upper elementary students receive instruction in self-contained classrooms where the BCA curriculum is both accelerated and enriched.

Arts & Athletics

At Bay City Academy, we offer music, choir, art, and physical education classes. Each class participates in fitness two to four times per week, which includes personal fitness goals and traditional sports and games played in the gymnasium.


What are the Bay City Academy hours? 

Bay City Academy is in session from 8:00 AM - 3:15 PM, Monday through Friday. 

What else makes Bay City Academy unique? 


  1. Choice Theory - Internally motivated students through Great Expectations
  2. Character Education - Taught, Modeled and Measured
  3. Whole Child Approach - Meeting all the basic needs of our students
  4. Focus on the Arts - Music and Art, K-10
  5. School Uniforms - Uniforms contribute to a sense of belonging, which is a fundamental aspect of Choice Theory; they cut through economic and social barriers, and allow students to focus on their education
  6. Differentiated Instruction - Each student is placed where they need to be academically
  7. Extra Curricular Opportunities - Athletics, Dance, Lady Lumberjacks, and Game Club.
  8.  Superior Staff - We look for individuals who are fully invested in Bay City Academy and our core values.

What is character education? 

In addition to traditional academics, the character traits of optimism, getting along, work ethic, responsibility, respect and kindness are modeled, taught and graded at all levels on a regular basis at Bay City Academy. All students receive character education report cards periodically throughout the year.

What are the class businesses? 

Students take part in operating class businesses each year, learning responsibility, work ethic, and the basic principles of economics.

What is Choice Theory? 

Dr. William Glasser's Choice Theory provides the basis for all we do at Bay City Academy. Choice Theory explains that almost all human behavior is chosen and that we are driven by our needs for survival, love and belonging, power, freedom and fun — the most important of which is love and belonging. Students learn the Seven Caring Habits of supporting, encouraging, listening, accepting, trusting, respecting and negotiating differences, as opposed to the Seven Deadly Habits of criticizing, blaming, complaining, nagging, threatening, punishing and bribing/rewarding to control.

What about school rules and discipline? 

At Bay City Academy, we have one school rule for all students and adults: "Do the right thing, because it's the right thing to do." We teach our students to do the right thing not because someone is going to reward us or we will not be punished, but simply because it's the right thing to do. Our primary goal is to prevent discipline problems by developing good relationships with our students and creating classrooms that are need-fulfilling for students. We teach students a process for talking through their problems that promotes self-evaluation for improved behavior. We also believe that no student has the right to disrupt the learning of others. Students who disrupt the classroom are removed from the classroom setting until they have developed a plan for improving their behavior.