Innovation, Design, and Entrepreneurship

Lark’s Innovation, Design, and Entrepreneurship (IDE) Program is designed for teenagers ready to have agency in their learning. We are a community-focused cohort of diverse voices ready to tackle hard issues, gain real skills, push ourselves, be heard, and support each other. We are here to provide grounding, strength, resilience, and optimism for students now and to take them into the future. 

Solution Oriented

Our micro-school program guides students through the design-thinking process to identify and solve a real problem. They will research that problem- large or small, tangible or not- and design a procedure or product to solve it. And this work isn’t theoretical, students will implement their solution by the end of 12 weeks.

Community Connection

Our program looks a lot more like a start-up incubator or accelerator than a standard high school. IDE students build community, network, and collaborate by experiencing shared challenges, peer support, and engagement with real experts. At IDE, learning is about whole-person development, including social and emotional wellness, not just academics. 


Who should apply to IDE?

Students who want to take charge of their learning, embrace 21st Century skills, and get real-world experience. We believe the pursuit of innovation, design, and entrepreneurship applies to all fields and encompasses all learners, from the artistic dreamer to the mathematically-focused engineer to the detail-oriented programmer. 

We generally recommend students be rising freshmen to rising juniors. That said, we don’t really believe in grade bands and understand a rising 8th grader, senior, or recent graduate may be an equally good fit for our cohort. 

If this program feels right to you and you are a teen, apply. We want to hear from you. 


Is this a full-time high school program?

IDE is a 12-week program offering an alternative to the traditional high school experience- call it a learning pod, a micro-school, an accelerator, or any of the other names being used at the moment. We don’t fit in just one box.

Students will attend a few live virtual sessions and cohort meetings each week in addition to asynchronous (independent) work. We promise students won’t be sitting in Zoom lectures for hours a day, that’s not our style. 

We know families are grappling with a lot of uncertainty. Our goal, as ever, is to provide real education for the world we live in- including these historic times. Our plan is to offer IDE fall, winter, and spring so families can commit or recommit each term based on their changing needs. 


So it is all online?

Currently, that is the plan- Fall 2020 will be totally online. Our hope is to have socially distanced in-person options once we know we can support your health and safety. 


Can students attend IDE all year? 

Engaged IDE students can reassert their interest to continue to the next 12 week trimester without a formal reapplication. So yes, students can attend a full school year. 


What is the application process?

Students and parents are involved in submitting an application to IDE. No test scores or transcripts are needed to apply. Once we receive your application, an email will be sent letting you know if you’ve been invited to proceed with a virtual interview. The interview is the last step and provides an opportunity to ask questions, get to know the program, and ensure IDE is a good fit for all involved.

Below are the questions you’ll find on the application. There will be a place to attach the Student Statement on the application. The Parent Statement is completed as part of the form.

Student Statement

This is a chance for us to get to know you, there are no right or wrong answers. Submissions must be typed and should long enough to fully respond to each question. Feel free to include images, links, videos, or other personalizations to your statement as you see fit.

  1. Tell us about yourself and what matters to you.
  2. Explain a topic you are passionate about and how it has influenced your life.
  3. If you could work to solve one problem in your life, your community, or in the world right now- what problem would you focus on and why?

Parent Statement

We know your child is more than just an academic record. In a short response, please answer the questions below.

  1. Give us a candid snapshot of who your child is:
  2. What challenges, successes, or frustrations have you faced as a family regarding their education?
  3. What hopes do you have for your child’s education?


If a student doesn’t get into the fall cohort, can they apply again?

Absolutely! Spaces are limited and competition is tough; we welcome re-application.  


Is this program accredited? 

Lark is in the accreditation process with WASC. This takes about 12 months and includes rigorous curriculum accountability and evaluation visits. 


Can students earn a regular high school diploma at Lark?

Lark is a member of the Mastery Transcript Consortium, a nationwide organization redesigning the high school transcript for the 21st century in collaboration with college admissions offices. This model uses proficiency, rather than letter grades, to show mastery. 

IDE students will exit with an MTC transcript and a portfolio of their work. Not to mention a network and real job skills!


How much does IDE cost?

$3,000-$4,200 for the 12-week Fall 2020 program

We never want cost to be a barrier to education. Our tuition range, which breaks down to $250-$350 per week, is intended to allow families to pay what they can afford. We are working to develop a scholarship fund to provide financial support to those in need. If cost is the only thing holding you back from applying to IDE, please send us an email and let us know your situation. We want to work with you. 

If you are interested in donating to our scholarship fund, please click here


Other Questions?

Click here to contact us!

Now Accepting IDE Applications

Ready for an innovative and individualized high school experience?
Apply for the IDE Program today!