The Ask Academy Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (Stem), Building relationships ot create self-directed learners.

Founder's Message

The founders of The ASK Academy were motivated to write the ASK charter in 2010 to provide families of the northwest section of Albuquerque and the greater Rio Rancho area an academically challenging science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) middle school and high school choice. The founders felt the current public school system across our nation needs to be transformed from what we know school is to what we know school needs to be. The ASK Academy is an educational experiment collecting empirical data to do just that. 

The founders believed the current public education system needs to change from a liberal art approach for middle and high school learners to a more college and career-focused approach. The replacement system needs to help the New Mexico learner discover their personal interests, passions, and their aptitudes and connect them to existing career pathways. When learners discover these things, the system needs to provide them choices that can maximize their cultivation and growth toward existing career choices in the world. The ASK charter is an educational model accomplishing choice academic rigor, critical thinking, and test taking skills for scholars and families who desire careers in engineering and design (E&D) or biomedical (BMS) areas. In its first seven years of existence, the ASK Academy has proven to be a leader in STEM educational innovation and producing academically strong STEM scholars.  

The ASK Academy has raised the rigor for graduation, raised the rigor to achieve course credit, and related the standards to relevant applications in BMS and E&D areas. At the same time, we have assisted our scholars in demonstrating their high abilities through standardized testing. Such testing conveys part of our school’s high standards. ASK learners also have enjoyed applying common core standards to life-sized angry bird competitions, designing solar hot dog cookers, competing as state champion robotic engineers, and learning dissociation strategies for the medical field, while learning how to prepare, perform, and prevail on standardized tests. 

In seven short years of existence, ASK graduating classes are significantly out-scoring national averages on the ACT test in every category; writing, reading, science, mathematics, and social studies. This trend also holds true for composite scores. Not many schools in the nation can say that. This rings particularly true at ASK, where 100 percent of eligible students take the ACT. ASK scholars also lead the state in PARCC scores, SBA science scores, and state of New Mexico end of course assessments. We say that proudly.  

Come visit our campus, talk to the learners, and learn from them what makes us so different and as special as we “build relationships to create self-directed learners.”


ASK Founders: Paul Stephenson, Daniel Barbour, and Edgar Short