JA Logo

Contact:  Kathy Sanchez

JA Academy breaks free from the traditional classroom to bring real world connectivity into the everyday academic experience. Designed as a fully-immersive school-within-a-school, JA Academy brings real world connectivity to create a highly engaging and relevant learning environment. It is integrated learning through dynamic real-life case studies, collaborating with mentors, and going into industries to gain exposure and build the skills needed to more fully prepare today's students for the demands of tomorrow's economy.


The JA Academy at Norcross is looking for students who are interested in an interdisciplinary and project-based approach to high school.  This program accepts students who are motivated and wish to pursue a career pathway in four areas:

  • Business and Technology

  • Entrepreneurship

  • Financial Services

  • Marketing and Management


Eligible applicants must meet four criteria including all of the following:

  • The student and their custodial parent(s) or legal guardian(s) must currently reside within the Norcross High Schools’ attendance zone.

  • The student must be currently enrolled in a recognized 8th grade curriculum and complete all promotion requirements to ninth grade status by the end of spring semester, 2018

  • The student must have performed well in middle school courses and earned an A or B in a majority of their core/academic classes in seventh and eighth grade.

  • The student must be able to take honors level or higher academic course work. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the JA Academy?
The Junior Achievement Academy at Norcross is a full immersion “school within a school” that is designed to provide students with a rigorous standards-based education infused with career readiness, entrepreneurship and financial literacy skills.  Students engage in hands-on experiences in an integrated curriculum that combine core high school subjects with career and technical education that blends college and career preparation.  Drawing on JA’s partnerships throughout the business community, JA Academy students have access and connectivity to elite companies though mentors, executive guest seminars, professional advisors, case studies, project-based business challenges, site visits, and internships.  Students in the program will achieve certification in up to four Career Pathways, while also gaining real-world experience through an internship during their senior year, and launching their own entrepreneurial venture through high school.  Additionally, the JA Academy provides an Entrepreneurial Incubator in the 10th-12th grade years, which leads students through the time-tested methods of JA entrepreneurship as students launch and build their businesses throughout the course of high school.  Return to Top
What College-Career Pathways will students complete?

Students in the JA Academy will complete up to four career pathways. These pathways will give students the option of earning a career certificate at the end of their four years in the program.

Career Pathways offered will include:

  • Business and Technology

  • Entrepreneurship

  • Financial Services

  • Marketing and Management (optional)

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Who are the JA Students?
The JA Academy student is any student who enjoys gaining real-world experience through visits to community businesses, job shadowing, mentoring, networking with community leaders and tackling business challenges through case studies.  Eligible students should have good grades and evidence of leadership skills and self-motivation.  Only a limited number of students will be accepted through the competitive process. Return to Top
Can a student be a part of the JA Academy and the International Baccalaureate program?
Yes, students are able to participate in the IB Program and in the JA Academy.  While students will not be able to complete the full IB Diploma Program, students will have the option of being an IB Course Certificate student and taking many Advanced Placement courses. Return to Top
How will students be selected for the program?
Students in Pickneyville and Summerour Middle School will indicate a preference in the Fall of 2017.  If a student is from another school, please contact our team and indicate an interest.  Student middle school records will be evaluated for placement.  Additionally, some students will be invited to apply through a review of  middle school academic performance.  Students must have performed well in their academic classes in the seventh and the eighth grades to be considered for the program.  Return to Top
Will students be able to participate in extracurricular activities at Norcross?
Yes.  We realize that part of the unique experience of high school is the many opportunities to be involved in and explore a variety of sports and clubs.  As part of the JA Academy, students will be able to participate in any club or activity offered at Norcross High School.  Return to Top
What courses are involved in the JA Academy?
Students will take honors level college preparation courses with the option of taking Advanced Placement and IB Course Certificate courses within the scope of their four years in the program.  Within each academic year students will be taking up to 8 classes in a semester including core classes, world languages, Career and Technical Education classes and an elective.  Students will have elective options that include Band or Art.   Additionally students will have the opportunity to be involved in mentorships, internships, and job shadowing.  Return to Top
What is a sample schedule for a JA student?

Sample Schedule A

Sample Schedule B

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Junior Achievement

Name Title E-mail
Ashley, Eric JA Program Director
Cafarella, Anthony Social Studies JA Teacher
Friday, Christina Language Arts JA Teacher
Gorgans, Matthew Language Arts JA Teacher
Hartley, Scott Social Studies JA Teacher
Kozak, Kristen Math JA Teacher
Luong, Diane Science JA Teacher
Moody, Chris CTE JA Teacher
Stewart, Kelly Math JA Teacher
Stewart-Smith, Kathryn Science JA Teacher
Warren, Nga CTE JA Teacher
Weiser, Angela CTE JA Teacher
Williams, Lesleye CTE JA Teacher