Athlos Academy of St. Cloud board at groundbreaking

Athlos Academy of St. Cloud begins construction on new school

Yesterday, Athlos Academy of St. Cloud broke ground on a new school in central Minnesota. The charter school will open in fall 2016.

Athlos Academy provides a new and unique approach to teaching and learning in the St. Cloud area. Its mission is to provide high-quality educational opportunities for the whole child built on the three foundational pillars: Prepared Mind, Healthy Body, and Performance Character. Students will participate in four scientifically developed physical activity sessions each week, performance character is integrated into the culture of the school, and high academic achievement is an expectation for all students.

“It took great effort to bring us to where we are today; however, this is not the end. Our work has just begun, and we eagerly anticipate the great impact we will see in the lives of St. Cloud students, thanks to this new educational opportunity,” Dan McKeon, board chair of Athlos Academy, told audience members.

The school will initially serve 800 students in grades K-6. Once fully enrolled, the school will serve 1,200 students in grades K-8. “I want to stress that all students are encouraged to enroll,” said McKeon. “This is a public, tuition-free campus, and our doors are open to everyone who values rigorous academics and an educational approach that considers the whole child.  We envision serving students from not only St. Cloud, but surrounding communities, as well.”

The building will be approximately 90,000 square feet, including state-of-the-art classrooms and fully-equipped indoor athletic facilities with both hardwood court and turf field space. The school will employ approximately 100 teachers and other support staff.

Paul Schwinghammer, from whom the land for the school was purchased, told the audience that the property was once his grandfather’s and was passed down through the generations to him.

“My mother and father were very much advocates for education… For a school to be here is like mom and dad have got to be proud and saying, ‘That’s the right thing.’  We’re just joyful about it!”

Paul Schwinghammer

Athlos Academy is a tuition-free, public charter school authorized by Volunteers of America, a national non-profit that provides housing, healthcare, and other services to those in need. For more information, including enrollment forms, please visit

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