Arete Preparatory Academy

  • Arete Preparatory Academy is WASC accreditated a private middle school and high school located in West Los Angeles.
  • At the cutting edge of 21st century education, our inquiry-driven, seminar-style classes inspire students to analyze, question, debate, reimagine and synthesize all in the context of a rigorous, comprehensive college preparatory program. Guided by a passionate faculty, our students deepen their intellectual identities, upend existing paradigms, and forge inspirational solutions.
  • As a deliberately small school, our seminar-sized classes allow us to meet individual needs and passions.

Top Placements

Arete Preparatory Academy places among the top 20% of private schools in California for:

School Overview

School Membership(s)School Assoc.Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC)
Religious AffiliationNonsectarian
Grades OfferedGrades 6-12
ADD/ADHD SupportYes
Learning Difference ProgramsYes
Learning Programs SupportedMild Learning Differences
Year Founded2007
Summer School OfferedYes

Student Body

Total Studentsn/a
Student Body TypeCo-ed

Academics and Faculty

Total Classroom Teachers20 teachers
% Faculty w/Advanced Degree
Average Class Size6 students
List of Courses OfferedLink to List of Courses
Classroom Dress CodeCasual

Finances and Admission

Admission DeadlineNone / Rolling
% on Financial Aid
Admissions DirectorJim Hahn


Total Sports Offered1 sport
SportsCross CountryCross Country


Total ExtracurricularsTotal Extra-curric.4 extracurriculars
ExtracurricularsExtra-curric.Club or Organization:
Ethics Bowl Team, Robotics Team

Arts and Music Programs:
Rock Band, Theatre Arts

School Notes

  • Philosophical Thinking - Philosophical questions and methods underlie our teaching. Our students learn to do philosophy: challenging widely-held beliefs, exposing hidden assumptions and synthesizing disparate claims and propositions. Having escaped the chains of conventional thinking, a philosophically-trained mind is equipped to innovate, disrupt, and inspire a toolkit for a challenging world. 
  • The Arete Seminar - An Arete Seminar is so much more than just a small class. Built on a foundation of open communication and mutual respect, our Seminars represent a shared goal: to create a place where profound reflection and innovative risk-taking are encouraged and celebrated. Instead of competing for attention and points, students engage in thoughtful, provocative questioning and work together to deepen and expand discourse. At the same time, the Arete Seminar is pensively playful  a rare place where a student can revel in the satisfaction and fun of learning while also developing a powerful academic identity and voice.
  • Symposium - Both a celebration and a challenge, Symposium is the embodiment of the Arete spirit and pedagogy a meaningful, transformative alternative to final exams. Consistent with our commitment to "choice and voice," students select their own topics based on a unifying, school-wide philosophical question or theme. They become researchers and teachers, learning to produce substantive, idea-focused academic papers. After an exhilarating and rewarding week of exploration and writing, students transform their papers into interactive, creative presentations that bring their ideas to life for an authentic audience of Arete students, teachers and the community at large.  
  • High expecations with a high level of support - Learning consists of two parts the "what" and the "how." While some of the "what" will stick with students, this crucial stage should place strong emphasis on shaping how students learn, how they perceive themselves as soon-to-be lifetime scholars, and - most crucially - how they use resources to tackle challenging problems. For these reasons, we believe school can't be truly challenging without a high level of academic and personal support. 
  • Beyond Grades: Evaluating For Mastery - At Arete, we don't simply teach to the test or quiz; we teach toward lasting understanding. Rather than assessing in a way that allows students to memorize the night before and forget everything the next week, we use authentic assessments to find out just how comprehensively students grasp the material.Through deep dive evaluations instead of your average, forgettable "tests," students demonstrate what they've learned in brainy, creative, and oft-entertaining ways.
  • Arete emphasizes socioeconomic and cultural diversity. We actively recruit bright students that lack the financial means to attend a private school with our sliding-scale tuition. 30% of our students obtain financial aid and through our Scholarship Fund. 

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School Reviews

  5.00 out of 5  (4 reviews)
My son began on 9th and is now a thriving 10th grader. As a student at Arete, he's engaged, happy, learning, exploring. His curiosity kicked up a notch. He discusses what he's learning at home and it's been amazing during the recent online learning to hear him in class, especially during philosophy. It's been a real eye opener and very exciting to see that the school really walks the talk about engaging the students with seminar classes where they discuss each topic deeply and get to dive deep into their interests. The school has excelled during this stay-at-home learning time.The teachers amaze with enthusiasm, knowledge, ability to engage and meet each student personally. They teach their passions. They're trusted and the results are impressive! I'm so grateful my child can have this experience.Arete uses Socratic seminar format. Student's question, observe, discuss, use information in real-world ways, each accepted and encouraged for unique ideas. They discover and develop their voices and talents. They complete college requirements but go much further to discover whom they are as individuals! Students can jump ahead. My kid rediscovered his love of science. He can go deeper at Arete. Same with history.The community is wonderful (read: great parent community!) Arete continues to amaze in giving my son a superior education!
- Posted by
My son is highly gifted and needed a school that could challenge him academically but also help with his executive functioning skills. We found in Arete a place where he is both challenged and supported simultaneously. A claim many schools make but very few can actually deliver on. Middle school and high school can be difficult as our kids move toward becoming adults. We are thrilled to have Arete as a true partner in this transition. The school seems more than capable of meeting each child where they are academically and push them to strive towards Aporia (being open enough to know when you don`t something). I feel that this school, with its Socratic dialectic in each class is helping to create a life long learner in my son. A trait that I know will serve him well for the rest of his life.
- Posted by
My 11th grader loves "going" to school every day, albeit by distance learning. The seminar-style classroom with low teacher-student ratio provides the opportunity to deepen each student's learning, encourage critical thinking, and nurture one's passion. Such a learning model is easily translated into the online setting. The education here is highly personalized focusing on an individual's intellectual as well as emotional growth. The study body although small is quite diverse with various interests and backgrounds. So glad we found this school.
- Posted by
Aret has changed our lives completely. Our son loves his school and finally feels like he's part of a community. The switch from in-person classes to virtual learning due to the pandemic was seamless. The teachers are all so caring and invested in the students in their class. They came up with clever ways to keep our son engaged and excited about their subjects and were immediately accessible whenever he had a question outside of class time. Subjects that he once had trouble with. Like math, he's now excelling in. Because of the small class sizes, each of the students gets more than enough one-on-one time with every teacher. They really get to know every child and the best way to help each one, individually. The caliber of teachers at Aret is truly exceptional. We literally cannot say enough good things about this school. We are so grateful to have found it.
- Posted by

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Did You Know?
The average private school tuition in Los Angeles, CA is $11,546 for elementary schools and $22,525 for high schools (read more about average private school tuition across the country).
The average acceptance rate in Los Angeles, CA is 78% (read more about average acceptance rates across the country).