About KCA

Our mission, vision, and values are spoken to the student:


Where it’s okay to be who you are while discovering your place in the world.


Our school will be a place where you can come as you are and we’ll meet you there. We will help you embody your authentic teenage self through creative expression, wild nature, community collaborations, real-world youth leadership opportunities, and rigorous academics that will challenge any doubts that you are intelligent, capable, and creative. We want to help you step into the adult world with confidence, passion, and perspective. Our vision is to help you define your vision – who are you, what brings you joy, and where are you going from here?

Four Core Values

(1) Youth Leadership Grows Genuine Confidence

On the threshold of adulthood, teenagers deserve real-world leadership and ‘adulting’ opportunities that let them test drive their grown-up selves. Youth voices matter and should have a seat at the table where decisions are being made, including the school boardroom, classroom, and within the larger community. Youth also have the right to make mistakes as they practice becoming leaders and adults, and we’ll be there with empathy, meaningful consequences, and tools for self-awareness and self-assessment.

(2) Creative Expression is a Human Right

Every human has the right to express themselves through song, dance, writing, performing, painting, drawing, sculpture, photography, and other modes of creativity. We support both the creatives who choose artistic careers, competitions, and performances, as well as those who creatively express themselves for merriment, catharsis, or just because. 

(3) Rural Communities Count

Be proud of the starry night skies, towering trees, quiet places, and rushing waters of our valley. Learning the cultural and natural history of our bioregion deepens our connection to place, especially when the knowledge is gained through botanical hiking, backpacking, monitoring our streams, counting migratory birds, learning the innovative ways our community has generated economic value in our rural region, interviewing community elders, acknowledging forgotten and suppressed histories, volunteering, and exploring other ways of being in community.

(4) Multiple Perspectives Build a Better World

A 21st-century education is civics-minded, culturally responsive, reflective, and seeks to understand the world from multiple points of view. Practice valuing the strength of differing opinions, especially those that differ from your own, as you improve your ability to debate, critically engage with the past, present, and future, and find common ground to build a stronger community.

What Makes Kalmiopsis A Little Different?

Read below for seven ways that KCA is a unique addition to Three Rivers School District (TRSD):

(1) Intensives: The academic calendar includes three two-week intensives as well as two semesters. Students choose one field-based, project-based, or arts-based class for a two-week immersion;

(2) Performing, fine, and literary arts: In contrast to the predominance of competitive sports at other schools, KCA prioritizes the arts: arts-based integration into all classes (including P.E.), arts-focused extracurriculars, and arts-based collaborations with community artists and nonprofits;

(3) Teacher-run: KCA will be the first teacher-run TRSD school, as nonhierarchical Teacher Leaders share administrative duties;

(4) Restorative Justice: student discipline follows a Restorative Justice model, which nearly eliminates detentions, suspensions and expulsions;

(5) Youth decision-making power: KCA’s school board designates 1-2 seats for students, a first for TRSD;

(6) Narratives over numbers: On report cards, GPAs are de-emphasized, and detailed written and oral feedback emphasized;

(7) Place-based learning: KCA will localize curriculum, conduct field-based studies, collaborate with local fine/literary/performing artists, hike and backpack in our wild places, and incorporate place-based learning into every Intensive and most semester-length classes.

KCA Archives: From Proposal to Opening Day

In August 2023, KCA opens our doors to students and families for the first time! Check out these links to see the process unfold, from the day we submitted our proposal requesting to become a school within Three Rivers School District, to the day we open our doors.

Proposal and Public Hearing– Visit this page to see the application process as it unfolded from submission of the KCA proposal through district approval and sponsorship.

The Kalmiopsis Collection– Visit the event page for a collaborative youth art project with KCA and Southern Oregon Guild of Artists and Artisans.

“Untitled” by Ramona Newman