Our journey in public schools began in 2004 when we recognized that many of the high school students in our after school programs were not successfully enrolling in computer science and engineering majors in college. We discovered they were being tracked in the lower math track, despite the fact they had been working as paid summer interns in local companies as programmers, network engineers, web developers and digital media producers.
Knowing our after-school programs could not close the disparity we collaborated with innovative educators from around the state and researched various school models to create what is known today as the STEMbyTAF Model. We pitch the idea of piloting the STEMbyTAF Model by opening a school in partnership with a school district. Federal Way Public Schools, under the leadership of Superintendent Tom Murphy jumped at the opportunity and in 2008 after two years of planning, TAF Academy opened as a neighborhood 6th-12th grade public school!
After much success and eight graduating classes, TAF Academy had an unsustainable waitlist. Thanks to some quick thinking, TAF Academy merged with Saghalie Middle School in the 2017/2018 school year to create TAF@Saghalie, educating over 600 students each year.