As an achievement-focused Thompson Educational Foundation 90|90 school and part of the Public School Academies of Detroit system, we are committed to graduating at least 90 percent of our 9th grade students and sending at least 90 percent of graduates on to college.
College tours, college speakers, career speakers and fairs, career exploration courses, and on-site admissions are just a few of the elements that create a school environment where college is an expectation. A full-time College Transitions Counselor works with all students at all grade levels in the school and supports the application and acceptance process. Collaboration with CCS allows HFA:SCS to have a special focus on careers in Art and Design and exposure to real professionals working in these fields.
All students complete the Senior Mastery Process (SMP), which includes a deep dive into career and college pathways, a 75-hour internship in the career of their choice, and a doctoral defense style presentation of their experience and research to a panel of adults and peers. This capstone Henry Ford Academy experience cements the link between what is learned in high school and the world of work and college.
"When will I ever use this?" is a question that students across the nation ask themselves and their teachers. At HFA: SCS, the college preparatory curriculum is aligned with national and state standards and specifically designed to show students how skills and content from Math, Science, English, Social Studies, and Art (and all other subjects) are applied to real-world problems. This is accomplished through quarterly Design Challenges, which unite all core subjects and prompt groups of students to use skills and knowledge from all courses to develop creative and innovative solutions to real-world problems.
The curriculum becomes truly engaging because students see how academic subjects apply to their own lives, their communities, and how they can use what they learned in school to change the world and be an innovator.
Intensive Art and Design Preparation
In 2010, National Endowment for the Arts Chairman Rocco Landesman called HFA: SCS "a poster child", school that embodies visionary thinking and gets him charged up about the possibilities of art.
At a time when other public schools are cutting their art programs, HFA: SCS regards art a core subject. Students participate in an intensive art experience that includes a strong foundation in drawing, color theory and mixed media design. In middle school, students master the principles and elements of art, which lay a solid foundation for the more concentrated art courses offered at the high school level.
Our partnership with the College for Creative Studies presents HFA: SCS students with the privilege of a world-class, design-based art education without ever leaving Detroit! CCS artists, students, and faculty members are regular figures in our school, and work in collaboration with our teachers to provide a top-notch program. Each Spring our students participate in the regionally renowned, College for Creative Studies Student Exhibition Opening that draws attention from artists, art enthusiasts, and art collectors from all over the metropolitan Detroit area.