Will Carleton Academy is a K-12 tuition-free public charter school in Hillsdale, Michigan founded in 1998. Will Carleton Academy devotes itself to serving the community as a charter school where parents can choose a traditional curriculum and educational atmosphere that is committed to both the intellectual development and the character formation of the students.

Our Mission Is


To Educate

  • Back-to-basics curriculum
    • K-8th-Core Knowledge Sequence
    • 9th-12th: Michigan Merit/College Preparatory Curriculum
  • Small classroom sizes at all grade levels
  • Emphasis on character education
  • Highest-achieving public school in Hillsdale County
  • Top 50 SAT scores in the State of Michigan

To Enrich

  • Advanced Placement class offerings on demand
  • Dual Enrollment, Early/Middle College, and Vocational-Technical Programs
  • Extensive extracurricular offerings at all grade levels
  • Diverse field trip opportunities, including foreign travel
  • MHSAA-sanctioned athletics in all three seasons

To Enlighten

  • Orderly, disciplined environment
  • Focus on the whole child, with the goal of helping to mold outstanding citizens
  • K-12th Art and Music curriculum
  • 4th-12th French curriculum
  • Monthly Core Virtues instruction

Why Choose a Charter School?

A charter school, by definition, is a school of choice. Because of this, parents play an important role in every part of their child’s education. Our small size allows more one-on-one attention and the ability to tailor our curriculum to meet each child’s educational needs. Our faculty and staff are committed to nurturing the whole child, fostering the safe and respectful environment where learning can best occur.

Learn More About Enrolling Your Student

National Accreditation 

Annual Education Report

Annual Education Report

Want to learn more?

What families are saying about Will Carleton Academy

"Our kids are thriving at WCA, and that is very important to us.  Thank you, WCA, for making a great place to educate our kids!"
-Cathy K.

"While I firmly believe our children's development starts at home, I truly feel that WCA is an extension of my home in raising my kids to become good people."
-Rob T.

"My son's learning needs are met with consideration and respect...making him feel supported, encouraged, and empowered."
Jennifer S.

"They welcome parent involvement and always take the time to make sure parents know how their children are doing."
-Lucy B.

"Will Carleton Academy strives for excellence, and they inspire their students to strive for the same."
-Jessica H.

"We love the individualized education and the clear sense that teachers and staff are rooting for students."
-Christina M.


  • Gadwood uses her talents to help others

    March 6, 2019

      We are so proud of Clemmie Gadwood, an eighth-grader at Will Carleton Academy who was featured in the Holland Sentinal. Gadwood is thriving at Will Carleton and her story that encompasses her commitment to athletics, academics and others are commendable. She truly represents Will Carleton’s values that we strive to achieve every day. You … Continue reading “Gadwood uses her talents to help others”

  • Spreading Holiday Cheer

    December 17, 2018

    Our high school students made a special visit to the senior center to share some holiday cheer. Click here to see more about their visit.

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