How Acton Academy Turns Learning Upside Down

Courage to Grow tells the story of Acton Academy, a small school in Austin, Texas that sparked a worldwide movement. Founded by Laura and Jeff Sandefer, Acton Academy challenges traditional education by empowering children to take control of their learning journey within a close-knit community of excellence. This book is not just about education—it's about finding a calling that changes lives.

About the Author

Laura Sandefer

Laura Sandefer is the co-founder of Acton Academy, a global movement in learner-driven education. With degrees from Vanderbilt University, Laura is passionate about empowering children and transforming education.

Why You Should Read This Book:

  • Discover the transformative impact of Acton Academy on students and families worldwide.

  • Gain insights into creating a learner-driven community and fostering self-motivation in children.

  • Explore practical tools and frameworks to unleash human potential and forge stronger characters.

Professional Reviews


Ted Dintersmith

Education Author, Film producer, and Philanthropist

"A remarkable book that captures the powerful journeys of Acton Academy's founders, students, parent community, and--I hope--the future of education around the globe."


Sugata Mitra

Professor of Educational Technology, Newcastle University, UK

"Laura's story will make you happy, critical, sad, energized and above all else, optimistic about what young people can accomplish."


Mike Olson

Co-founder and parent, Talent Unbound, Houston (Acton Academy affiliate)

"This is a call to adventure that just might change your life, because it's certainly changed mine."


Tom Vander Ark

CEO of Getting Smart

"The Acton Academy is on the vanguard of change in education in our country. This is an important story about learning what matters."

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