Mounds Park Academy

Mounds Park Academy Photo #1 - Mounds Park Academy is a PreK-12 independent private school on 32 acres in Saint Paul, Minnesota that has offered a rigorous, college-preparatory experience since 1982. Here, students gain deep, comprehensive content knowledge to prepare them to forever dream big and do right.
Mounds Park Academy Photo #2 - At MPA, every child is known, understood, and always treated with kindness and respect by peers and teachers alike. Connections are fostered through intentional collaboration at and among grade levels. This results in a confidence that only comes from being a valued, contributing member of a community.
Mounds Park Academy Photo #3 - It all begins in the Lower School. MPA considers each child a classroom of one, an individual in the making who has a set of gifts and talents unlike any other. Teachers who care deeply take the time to understand what inspires, what engages, and what matters most to each student. Small class sizes allow for this level of individualization.
Mounds Park Academy Photo #4 - Middle School brings a gentle push. Students are expected to be increasingly responsible for their own academic journey. This is done with phenomenal support from exceptional teachers. The focus is on prioritization and balance, so students learn to keep a healthy perspective. They love being in the middle because it is here where they are encouraged to discover their passions.
Mounds Park Academy Photo #5 - Upper School is demanding, but not draining. The rigorous college-preparatory curriculum is balance and always focused on the application of learning rather than memorization. Whether studying biological processes, constitutional law, or multiple languages, our students connect their deep content knowledge to the world in ways that prepare them to impact it.
Mounds Park Academy Photo #6 - We move, we play, we dream, we doMPA embraces wonder and creativity and never, ever stifles it. We roll up our sleeves and get dirty. We go outside, around the corner, and across the world to explore real world topics. By presenting every single day as wonder-filled, your child will experience the joy of learning that will forever instill curiosity.
Mounds Park Academy is a PreK-12 private college preparatory school in Saint Paul where academic rigor with meaning and purpose prepares students to stir the human spirit, stand for justice, and shake the world.

Top Placements

Mounds Park Academy places among the top 20% of private schools in Minnesota for:

School Overview

School Membership(s)School Assoc.Institute for Independent Education
National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS)
Independent Schools Association of the Central States (ISACS)
Religious AffiliationNonsectarian
Grades OfferedGrades Prekindergarten-12
ADD/ADHD SupportYes
Learning Difference ProgramsYes
Learning Programs SupportedBroad Spectrum
Year Founded1982

Student Body

Total Students520 students
Student Body TypeCo-ed
% Students of Color
State avg.: 18%
Students by Grade Mounds Park Academy Student By Grade

Academics and Faculty

Total Classroom Teachers70 teachers
Student : Teacher Ratio7:1
National avg.: 13:1
% Faculty w/Advanced Degree
Average Class Size14 students
Number of AP Courses9 courses
List of Courses OfferedLink to List of Courses
Advanced CoursesAdvanced Topics in Calculus, Anatomy/Physiology, AP Biology, AP Calculus AB, AP Calculus BC, AP English Language and Composition, AP French Language and Composition, AP Spanish Language and Composition, AP World History, Arabic, French IV, V (college level), Honors Algebra 2/Trigonometry, Honors Algebra 3/ Advanced Trigonometry, Honors Biology, Honors Chemistry, Honors Physics, Honors Precalculus, Honors World History, Linear Algebra, Spanish IV, V, VI (college level), Virtual Classroom (Malone Schools Online Network - all college level)
Average SAT score1351
Average ACT score29
Matriculation DataMatric. DataLink to Matriculation Data
Classroom Dress CodeCasual
(uniforms in Lower School, dress code in Middle and Upper Schools)

Finances and Admission

Admission DeadlineFeb. 15 / rolling
Yearly Tuition Cost$31,350
Tuition NotesTuition for Pre-Kindergarten: $16,900 for 5 days (hot lunch included and before and after school care included) Tuition for Lower School: $26,400 Tuition for Middle School: $28,700 (includes student laptop) Tuition for Upper School: $31,350 (includes student laptop Tuition for International Students: $41,900 + Optional Homestay ($9,000)
% on Financial Aid
Admissions DirectorNatalie Waters Seum
Admissions AssociateRobyn Hare (Lower School)
Endowment Size$6 million


Total Sports Offered18 sports
SportsAlpine Skiing, Baseball, Basketball, Cross Country, Diving, Football, Golf, Ice Hockey, Lacrosse, Martial Arts, Nordic Skiing, Sailing, Soccer, Softball, Swimming, Tennis, Track and Field, VolleyballAlpine SkiingBaseball,
BasketballCross Country,
GolfIce Hockey,
LacrosseMartial Arts,
Nordic SkiingSailing,
Track and FieldVolleyball,


Total ExtracurricularsTotal Extra-curric.45 extracurriculars
ExtracurricularsExtra-curric.Club or Organization:
Chess Club, Cum Laude Society, Debate Team, Diversity Club, Environmental Club, Fiber Friends, French Club, Gay/Straght Alliance, Habitat for Humanity, Karate, Knitting Club, Lego League, Mad Science, Magic The Gathering Club, Maker Mondays, Math Bee, Math Counts, Middle School Dances, Middle School Play, Panther Club, Peer Leaders, Quiz Bowl, Racial Justice and Equity Club, Robotics Team, Science Club, Social Consciousness Club, Spanish Club, Speech Team, Spelling Bee, Student Council, Tutors Guild, World Language Contests

Arts and Music Programs:
Band, Choir, International Thespian Club, Orchestra, Piano Lessons, Spring Musical, String Lessons, Theatre Club, Winter Show, Yearbook

Recreational Athletic Programs:
LS/MS Swim Club, Sailing Club, Snowboarding Club

School Notes

  • Educational journeys only happen once. The challenge parents face is making sure their children are on the right path, one that guides them in the best direction and allows them to follow their successes-and find lessons in failure. At Mounds Park Academy, we believe that the best educational path is one that instills passion for knowledge and equips children to improve our world.
  • Originals in the Making: At MPA, we embrace every child. We celebrate differences and guide children on journeys to discover who they are truly meant to be. Academics are central, but there`s much more to an MPA education. Athletics, fine arts, and extracurricular activities-children pursue it all here, discovering their own unique amazing.
  • Academically Challenged & Internally Motivated: MPA offers a rigorous education with purpose in a creative, hands-on, engaging environment that ensures students find joy in learning. Far more meaningful than memorization, children gain deep understanding and the ability to apply their knowledge across multiple disciplines in innovative ways.
  • Confident Freethinkers: Children have opinions, emotions, and ideas. At MPA, we encourage free expression. In fact, we expect it. Respectful discourse and critical thinking prepare young minds for college, careers, and life. When children gain the confidence and courage to challenge status quo, they become equipped to make a positive impact on our world.
  • Valued Members of a Caring Community: MPA is a welcoming community built on shared values. Small classes and a connected community create the best learning environment for all children. At MPA, we know and understand each child, and our teachers and students treat each other with kindness and respect.
  • Dreamers & Doers: At MPA, we move, we play, we dream, we do. We embrace wonder and creativity. We roll up our sleeves and get dirty. MPA students venture outside, around the corner, and across the world, to explore real-world topics.

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School Reviews

  5.00 out of 5  (18 reviews)
We choose MPA for our two sons` during the pandemic without any of us stepping into the school. Simply because of the academic excellence, abundant resources, great feedbacks from current parents and outpouring of positivity from Admissions. A process that truly felt like it was tailored to our children's interests and desires. Almost a year into it, both our 6th and 8thgraders are extremely happy and we as parents see their drastic change. We truly loved how the school encourages Independent thinkers, freedom to express themselves, and implementing real-world applications into the classroom.
- Posted by
We love MPA. We came to MPA this fall during the pandemic for many reasons. We had a chance to tour the school before the pandemic and were absolutely blown away. MPA is a very impressive campus. The large green space is ideal, the makerspace is an amazing learning resource, gorgeous library, rich variety of school lunches, I don't even know what to say about the richness of the arts program. But honestly, it was deeper than all of these things. We were impressed by the care and knowledge put into creating the school culture. We believe this is our chance as parents to provide the absolute best educational experience for our children. MPA provides an amazing opportunity for students to explore their interests and find what drives them. Instead of conforming to some outside standard. MPA is a safe and supportive environment where our child can be true to herself. She has grown to be less anxious and more confident these past few months. Even during a pandemic! We feel MPA is a partner that will work with us to support and push our child to become the best version of herself. Our daughter feels like she has found a home at MPA and looks forward to going to school daily. She truly enjoys the richness of her classes and experiences at school. We feel so lucky to have found MPA.
- Posted by
Mounds Park Academy is a fantastic school. We couldn't be happier having both of our kids attend (4th and 6th). This is our first year and despite everything going on in our world, everyone at Mounds Park (teachers, administrators, support staff, parents, and most importantly students) have rallied to take the challenges and turn them into opportunities to learn, grow, and succeed. Our kids were both hesitant and tentative to start a new school (and to do so under such unique circumstances), yet, they have been welcomed with open arms, challenged academically, supported emotionally, and encouraged to engage and apply themselves in everything they do. Mounds Park Academy strives to create a diverse, aware, and accepting learning environment for everyone.
- Posted by
I loved my time at MPA, and I was so lucky to attend K-12. Two things really stand out. The first is academics. I didn't realize how strong they were until I got to college and was incredibly well prepared. The high school at MPA was more academically rigorous than college was for me. The second is athletics. The not cut policy allowed me to be a three sport athlete and develop incredible memories and lifelong friendships. As a basketball player, I probably wouldn't have been a varsity starter at my local public high school, but that didn't mean I wasn't a good player, and MPA had a home for me. If your someone who doesn't make the team at one of the huge suburban high schools, I recommend coming to MPA. The academics are amazing and you'll have a chance to develop those lifelong memories, rather than just watching from the stands. I will absolutely be sending my children to MPA.
- Posted by
We are just completing our third year of attendance and MPA has exceeded every expectation we ever had of a school for our three children, currently in lower and middle schools. The academics are both rigorous and flexible enough to help children of every level achieve their own personal best. Fitting with the general culture of the school, the athletics are welcoming to every single student willing to play - we have one very competitive athlete and two kids who just want the experience of trying new things, and they all love participating. For our family, the most outstanding component of MPA is the culture of excellent citizenship. Our kids are taught to be good people, to be polite and outspoken, to be unique and to feel safe, to be exactly the best possible version of themselves. It is such a tremendous relief to have that sort of rounded support as a parent. I wouldn't change a thing.
- Posted by
Mounds Park Academy feels like home for our children and family. The dedicated teachers, administrators, staff, and other families form a wonderful and welcoming community. But it`s the students that make MPA shine. The young people at MPA like to try new things and are encouraged to do so. In the span of a couple of weeks, we watched our daughters in the school play, a basketball game, and an orchestra concert. They didn`t need to be the stars of the show they were simply having fun. If the purpose of schools is to prepare young people for the life ahead of them, MPA excels. The students are explorers, creators, innovators, advocates, and thinkers. They`re also compassionate, thoughtful, and interested in perspectives different from their own. We love being a part of the MPA community, working together to help all of our children as they grow and develop into amazing young adults.
- Posted by
After seven years at MPA, we couldn't be more satisfied with our experience. Beyond the rigor, beyond the close community, beyond the opportunities, it's really about the type of person our son is being encouraged to be--independent, kind, responsible, wise, creative, and HUMBLE. This is not a community of excess or overly focused on prestige. This is a community that cultivates good people who are encouraged to be themselves and to enjoy the process of learning. Identified gifted, he is not only receiving an appropriate education for his age and intellect, but he's being prepared for a lifetime of fulfillment and happiness. We couldn't be more grateful to be part of the Mounds Park Academy community.
- Posted by
Our daughter started at MPA in the pre-K class and is now a 10th grader. MPA has been a fabulous school and excellent fit for her (and us!), due to outstanding teachers who appreciate each child individually and create a joyful learning environment. As a family, we have reveled in the "whole child" approach of the school, which is dedicated not only to academics, but in nurturing collaboration, creativity, and character development. At each grade, the teachers have embraced her, nurtured her zest for learning and offered incredibly creative ways to learn. And my daughter has developed very close relationships with teachers who inspire and support her strong extracurricular interests in speech and vocal performance. MPA has a collaborative, not competitive, atmosphere among students in each grade. I think that this may arise from MPAs goal not to stamp out students from one mold, but its approach to celebrating and encouraging each child's various skills, interests and needs.In addition to its thoughtful and creative curriculum, the school also offers a wealth of extracurricular activities - from arts, sports and drama to music, Quiz Bowl and speech/debate . . . . . and students are encouraged and supported to do more than one if interested. For example, my daughter has been able to balance the ski team , debate, drama and speech. The school is also a leader in technology learning, with its iLab and soon-to-be completed Maker Space, as well as robust laptop programs in the Middle School, robotics classes and teams, etc. - all of which are very exciting for the students. Finally, the school leadership is outstanding and the Head of School and division directors are warm, accessible and know the students well! We could not be happier at MPA, and we strongly encourage parents looking for a rigorous and joyful school setting to explore MPA.
- Posted by
Mounds Park Academy is not just excellent, it's exceptional. Specialized classes in science, math, music, art, language (Spanish, sign, and braille), and physical education -- and that's just for the kindergarteners. We''re not kidding. The sky is the limit for lower school, middle school, and beyond at MPA. We couldn't be happier to have our child at the school. Worth every penny.
- Posted by
It is difficult to explain the vast differences between MPA and schools in the surrounding areas of the Twin Cities. The superior quality of education, attention to each student's needs and the class offerings are truly unimaginable at any other school in town. There is an electricity flowing through the building that makes all who enter excited to be a part of the MPA community. I will never second guess my decision to send my children to Mounds Park Academy. It is worth every dollar, every sacrifice to pay the tuition.
- Posted by
We chose MPA 6 years ago for our two children when we were moving to Minnesota. After the first week of school and hearing the comments of our children, I said, "That's what school should be." I''ve thought that ever since. With our oldest off to college, she has been well-prepared for the rigor of college work. In addition, she has the confidence and independence to make her mark in the world.
- Posted by
MPA is a great school and community where your child matters. They matter to the teachers, the administrators, the coaches and also to other families. The caring intellectual interaction where he get "real" one-on-one time is priceless. It is our job as parents to raise our children -- in today's world MPA is who you want to partner with. Best school on the East Side of the Cities.
- Posted by
Our son joined the MPA community in 4th grade having come from a public school that we had determined was just not a good fit for him. From the beginning he was accepted and drawn into the community of students and as parents we were also amazed at how the parent community reached out to make sure we felt welcome and involved. Our son graduated from MPA two years ago. Over the course of his education at MPA he turned from a quiet, introverted child into an independent adult. He is able to talk to anyone, displays great self-confidence and has taken control of his future in ways we could not have imagined when we enrolled him so many years ago. When considering an environment for a child's education Mounds Park provides excellent academics. But even more important to us, everything about MPA strives to develop the whole child. Our son is living proof of this. If your shopping for an exceptional environment of caring educators you owe it to yourself to go and visit Mounds Park.
- Posted by
My two daughters joined Mounds Park Academy in August 2014 in Grades 1 and 5 having lived overseas for the previous four years. Although they have only been here just over a year, this has been a wonderful school to transition into. From the outset the other kids and faculty were incredibly welcoming. The small class size has allowed them to have personal attention and continue to stretch to their capabilities. They have had great access to music, theater and arts programs, and have loved to participate in a wide range of sports. I was initially a little concerned about having Elementary, Middle and High school students all together. I thought it might be overwhelming, especially for a 6 year old. Instead, the school does a fabulous job of partnering older and younger kids together so they teach, coach and learn, which really breaks down barriers and builds a community. One additional point - with two working parents, outside of school care has been really important for us, and our girls have enjoyed the Panther club and the extra curricular activities available onsite, such as Karate, Fencing, Piano lessons, Art classes, Robotics and many sports clubs. The summer camps have also been fun. We continue to be incredibly happy with our choice to send our girls to MPA. Simply put, the quality of academics, the culture and the values the school both instills and lives by, just work!
- Posted by
MPA has been a great place for our two boys to learn and grow. We''ve been consistently impressed by the quality of the teachers, and the commitment of the school to providing all students with a well-rounded education within a culture of respect for others. If you were trying to design a really excellent school starting from scratch, MPA is the kind of place you''d create.
- Posted by
We fell in love with Mounds Park Academy the first time we came to tour the school. The dedication and passion of the faculty and staff are truly inspirational. The small class sizes allow for children to be given the most opportunity for one on one learning. The environment is warm and nurturing, yet academically rigorous. It is truly an incredible place to be!
- Posted by
This is an excellent environment for students to grow and learn! The facilities are excellent! There are many opportunities to develop your personal interests and the staff is top notch!
- Posted by
Mounds Park Academy is serious about educating the "whole child." They have a very strong arts program (K-12) as well as consistently strong and creative academics. They value independent thinkers, welcome diverse families, and really focus on helping kids grow as multifaceted people.
- Posted by

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Did You Know?
The average private school tuition in Saint Paul, MN is $5,638 for elementary schools and $17,608 for high schools (read more about average private school tuition across the country).
The average acceptance rate in Saint Paul, MN is 90% (read more about average acceptance rates across the country).