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Colorado Academy is an independent nonsectarian, co-educational, college preparatory day school for students from Pre-Kindergarten through twelfth grade. The school's 94-acre (380,000 m2) campus is located in Lakewood, Colorado and serves approximately 965 students. The program is based on academics, arts and athletics. CA follows a trimester calendar with grades issued at the conclusion of each term. Classes in all divisions follow a six-day rotating schedule.

Colorado Academy
3800 South Pierce Street


Coordinates39°38′52″N 105°4′9″W / 39.64778°N 105.06917°W / 39.64778; -105.06917Coordinates: 39°38′52″N 105°4′9″W / 39.64778°N 105.06917°W / 39.64778; -105.06917[1]
MottoSpiritus Vitam Vivificat ("Spirit Enlivens Life")
CEEB code060393
Head of schoolMichael G. Davis, Ph.D.
Gradespre-K to 12
Enrollment965 (as of 2018)
Average class size17
Student to teacher ratio9:1
Hours in school day8:10 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Campus size94 acres (380,000 m2)
School color(s)Red/black/white
AthleticsCHSAA 3A, 4A, 5A
Athletics conferenceMetro League, Southern League
Team nameMustangs
RivalKent Denver
PublicationKokopelli Literary Magazine



Colorado Academy was established in 1906 as the Hill School for Boys in the Capitol Hill neighborhood in Denver, Colorado, and by 1923 was called the Colorado Military School. Military training was incorporated into the curriculum. The school outgrew its space during World War II and in 1947, moved from its location near the University of Denver to its present location in Lakewood, just outside the Denver city limits. In 1955, the school began shifting its focus away from military training. Under the leadership of F. Charles Froelicher, Colorado Academy emerged as a college preparatory school for boys. The school became coeducational in 1971.

Carl Martin became the Chief Financial Officer, hired by Mr. Froelicher, in December, 1972, and served as CFO until May, 1994, as Chief Financial Officer for Financial Affairs.

Today, the school has three different divisions: Lower School, Pre-Kindergarten - Grade 5, Middle School, Grades 6-8, and Upper School, Grades 9-12. The curriculum emphasizes group and individual study of the liberal arts and sciences, as well as engagement through experiential and service learning.


The school's present campus was purchased in 1947. Then known as the Kirk estate, it had been the country home of Jesse Welborn, president of the Colorado Fuel and Iron Company. The campus has buildings for each division, including a state-of-the-art Upper School that opened in January 2013, that features an innovation laboratory, expanded science labs and classrooms. The campus includes two libraries: a Lower School Library and the Raether Library, the Ponzio Arts Center, the Schotters Music Building, the historic Welborn House, Smith Center, a new field house and athletic center, a Campus Center and Bookstore, and a soon-to-be-renovated performing arts center. The CA campus also has a number of athletic fields, such as Stuie's Courts (8) (Tennis), Wright Field, Simms Field, Firman Field, Slater Field (turf) and a baseball field that was renovated in 2014.

Extracurricular activitiesEdit

All students participate in a week-long experiential learning program in the spring trimester called Interim. The Rocky Mountain wilderness and the Denver urban landscape are some of the settings for a range of experiences. The program is designed to provide students with challenging outdoor experiences alongside classmates and CA faculty.

Upper School students run an annual Students H.O.P.E. (Helping Other People Eat) program for nearly 2,000[2][third-party source needed] low income Denver residents, serving food and giving out toys.

Other Upper School clubs include Yearbook, AfricAid (founded by alumna Ashley Shuyler), and Faces of Diversity, and others.[citation needed]


Colorado Academy fields Colorado High School Activities Association-sanctioned competition teams in basketball, cross country, field hockey, golf, ice hockey, lacrosse, soccer, swimming, tennis, and volleyball. These teams compete in 3A, 4A, and 5A classification in the Metro League and Southern League. Additional competitive sports available to students include rock climbing and ultimate Frisbee. Non-competitive options include conditioning, cross-training, and yoga.


CA's arts program includes both visual and performing arts with course offerings in painting, drawing, and photography, digital composition, professional sound recording, and video production. Students stage dramas and musicals, or Upper School students may collaborate with a professional theater company to become part of a young playwright’s festival. Instrumental music, vocal music, and dance are also offered as part of the program; students may also take part in private music lessons offered on campus.

Notable alumniEdit

Former headmastersEdit

  • F. Charles Froelicher (1955–1975)
  • Sir Frank Wallace (1976–1990)
  • Christopher H. Babbs (1991–2008)[5]
  • Mike Davis (2009–Present)


  1. ^ "Colorado Academy". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. Retrieved 2008-10-06.
  2. ^ "Founder of Students H.O.P.E. Returns to CA Event", Colorado Academy, 2010-12-24
  3. ^ Archer, Jeanne; Taras, Stephanie (2009). Touching Lives: The Lasting Legacy of the Bivins Family. Tell Studios Inc. p. 256. ISBN 9780974914862.
  4. ^ [1]
  5. ^ Meyer, Jeremy P. (2008-06-09). "Babbs ends 27 years at prep school". Denver Post. After 27 years at Colorado Academy, the last 17 years as headmaster, Christopher Babbs is stepping down and moving with his wife to Mancos.

External linksEdit