Minnesota charter schools are independent public schools started, governed and operated jointly by licensed teachers, parents, community members and an elected board of directors.  They are part of the state public school system, but operate independently, as a separate school district. All charter schools in Minneosta are tuition‐free and are open to and welcome all students, no matter ability or need.

Minnesota was the birthplace of the charter movement. In 1991, the Minnesota Legislature passed the first charter school law in the nation.  It was the beginning of a unique public school option that has grown steadily over the past two decades. As of August 2015, there are 165 charter schools in operation in the state. While over 60% of charters are located in the greater Twin Cities metropolitan area, there are charters in communities across the state.

Charter schools are non-profit organizations funded by state general education revenues.  However, unlike traditional school districts, charter schools cannot initiate tax levies to generate additional funding.  Charter schools are open to all students, and do not charge tuition.

Every charter school in Minnesota must be approved by the Minnesota Department of Education and have a sponsoring Authorizer, who is responsible for oversight of all school operations.  Both of these entities monitor the charter school’s performance in meeting both academic and non-academic charter contract goals the school has established and they have approved.  DaVinci Academy’s Authorizer is Friends of Education.

Charter schools offer a unique educational choice in terms of curriculum, instructional methodology and an overall learning experience focused on results.  An effective charter school is designed to increase student achievement above the levels experienced in a traditional public school.

Charter School Basics

  • Charter schools are tuition free public schools.
  • Charter schools may not require entrance exams or requirements.
  • Charter schools may not limit the admission of pupils on the basis of intellectual ability, measures of achievement or aptitude, or athletic ability.
  • Charter schools must accept all students up to capacity. If there are more students than slots, the school must conduct a lottery.
  • Charter schools are normally smaller in size than traditional public schools and usually have smaller class sizes.
  • Charter schools receive less per pupil funding than traditional public schools; they may not levy property taxes, and receive no funding from local property taxes.
  • Charter schools are formed and operate as Minnesota non‐profit corporations.
  • Charter schools boards enter into a legally binding charter contract with an authorizer.
  • Charter school teachers must hold a valid Minnesota teaching license.

Learn more about Minnesota Charter Schools:
Minnesota Department of Education
MN Association of Charter Schools


Our focus on the Core Knowledge Sequence and differentiated instruction, together with a small community environment, where parents have the opportunity to become true partners in their child’s education, is only part of what sets DaVinci Academy apart from other schools. A curriculum that focuses on art and science and positive reinforcement strategies add to the unique attributes of our school. DaVinci Academy also provides students with opportunities to connect with the community by hosting annual science and art fairs and through group service projects.
DaVinci Academy is located at 532 Bunker Lake Blvd, Ham Lake, MN 55304. Visit our Contact page for a map and additional contact information.
DaVinci Academy’s school day begins at 8:00 a.m. and ends at 3:00 p.m. We utilize a modified year-round schedule such that students start school the second week in August and continue through the third week of June each year, with approximately 6 weeks for a summer break.  This schedule assures that students retain more over the summer break and it limits the time in the fall for gearing up and re-teaching before moving forward in the curriculum. The school provides shorter, more frequent breaks during the school year; and, these breaks benefit students as they allow time for administration and teachers to review data, refresh lesson plans based on that data, and prepare for the next unit of instruction. Students and teachers alike are rejuvenated by the regular breaks. We also offer an Intersession week each year school year. View our Academic Calendar for dates.

Please contact your child’s classroom teacher first for specific requests. For additional needs you can contact the administration as follows.

Have a specific request? Here's who to contact
Ms. Moffatt

Terry Moffatt
Director of Academics, K-5 Program Coordinator
View Bio
(763) 754-6577  ext. 1102
email Terry Moffatt

  • Curriculum
  • Title IX Coordinator
  • Grading
  • Assessments
  • Academic Counseling
  • After School Sports/Gym Schedule
Mr. Shields

Jack Shields
K-8 Dean of Students and Middle School Program Director
View Bio
(763) 754-6577 ext. 1315
email Jack Shields

  • Discipline
  • PBIS/Student Culture
  • Student Safety
Mrs. Fischer

Holly Fischer
Director of Operations
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(763) 754-6577 ext. 1103
email Holly Fischer

  • Facilities
  • Transportation
  • Bus Safety
Mrs. Kopecky

Jenny Kopecky
Human Resource Manager
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(763) 754-6577 ext. 1106
email Jenny Kopecky

  • Human Resources
  • STAR Coordinator
Mrs. Hartfield

Nicole Hartfield
Administrative Assistant
View Bio
(763) 754-6577 ext. 1107
email Nicole Hartfield

  • Enrollment Coordinator
  • Enrollment Questions
  • MARSS Coordinator
  • Student Records
  • General Questions
  • Newsletter
  • Website
Mrs. Walter

Debi Walter
Finance Specialist
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(763)754-6577 ext. 1108
email Debi Walter

  • Accounts Payable
  • Accounts Receivable
  • Expense Management
Mrs. Gerard

Brenda Gerard 
Administrative Assistant
View Bio
(763) 754-6577 ext. 1101
email School Office

  • Receptionist
  • Attendance Coordinator
  • Student Fees
  • General Questions
Mrs. Falkowski

Kathy Falkowski
Administrative Assistant
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(763) 754-6577 ext. 1101
email School Office

  • Receptionist
  • Volunteer Coordinator
  • General Questions
Mrs. Anderson

Cassandra Anderson
Food Service/Recess Coordinator
View Bio
(763) 754-6577 ext. 1143
email Cassy Anderson

  • Lunch Accounts Coordinator
  • Food Service Coordinator
  • Recess Coordinator
Mrs. Kresh

Julie Kresh
After School Program Coordinator
View Bio
(763) 754-6577 ext. 1134
email Julie Kresh

  • DaVinci Den
  • Extracurricular Activities
  • Intersession

Kindergarten classes are currently limited to a maximum of 20 students each. First grade through fifth grade classes currently have a maximum of 26 students each classroom. In sixth through eighth grades the class sizes are capped at 25 students. The ability groups for the reading and math classes are typically smaller.