In 1973 Emanuel Pariser and Dora Lievow founded The Community School, an alternative high school for Maine youth who needed a second chance at earning their high school diplomas.
Each year, sixteen students lived at school while focusing on jobs, academics and life skills.
In 1994, Passages was developed to serve teen parents through a home-based, self-paced high school diploma program.
The Community School grew to serve more than forty students each year.
In 2011, The Community School merged with Opportunity Farm, becoming Wayfinder Schools.
We now serve up to 65 students per year, through our home-based high school program.
Over the years, we`ve become a state- and nationally-recognized model of alternative education that has helped hundreds of Maine teens realize their goal of earning their high school diplomas. Using social justice, strength-based and relational strategies, we reengage youth who are over-age and under-credited and at risk of not earning their high school diploma. We work hard to create a learning environment that`s warm, safe, accepting, and challenging.
Our curriculum is tailored to individual student needs and is immediately relevant and practical to everyday life.

Quick Stats (2021-22)

  • School Type: Alternative School
  • Grades: 9-12
  • Students: 62 students
  • Average class size: 8 students
  • Application Deadline: None / Rolling

School Overview

School Membership(s)School Assoc.
Religious Affiliation
Grades Offered
Grades 9-12
Year Founded

Student Body

Total Students
62 students
Student Body Type
% Students of Color
State avg.: 13%
Students by Grade
Wayfinder Schools Student By Grade

Academics and Faculty

Total Classroom Teachers
10 teachers
Student : Teacher Ratio
National avg.: 13:1
Average Class Size
8 students

Tuition and Acceptance Rate

Admission Deadline
None / Rolling
Tuition Notes
Tuition for the Passages Program for teen parents is free.
Admissions Director
Erica Gates, Director of Passages
Admissions Associate
Martha Kempe, Head of Schools

School Notes

  • Wayfinder Schools' Passages Program serves students in eight Maine counties (Knox, Lincoln, Waldo, Sagadahoc, Androscoggin, York, Cumberland and Washington) who are facing challenges that keep them from attending traditional high school. We serve young parents and other Maine youth ages 14-20 who are seeking an alternative path to high school completion.
  • In the Passages Program, teachers work one on one with their students at the student's residence. Those who complete our programs graduate with a regular high school diploma.
  • Interested students can apply anytime by visiting our website at
Profile last updated: 01/19/2021

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Quick Stats (2021-22)

  • School Type: Alternative School
  • Grades: 9-12
  • Students: 62 students
  • Average class size: 8 students
  • Application Deadline: None / Rolling

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Did You Know?

The average private school tuition in Maine is $15,231 for elementary schools and $30,795 for high schools (read more about average private school tuition across the country).
The average acceptance rate in Maine is 75% (read more about average acceptance rates across the country).

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