About Great Hearts Print

A Message from Great Hearts Arizona President, Erik Twist

Since its inception, Great Hearts has grown to become a leading provider of a classical, liberal arts education in Arizona. Over the years, we have worked tirelessly to ensure our students receive an outstanding and relevant educational experience that encourages them to be well-rounded, critical-thinking, focused, and mature graduates. We prepare our students to be more than just proficient test-takers, but rather, to be free citizens: capable of innovation and leadership in any field in which they choose to endeavor. We do this by providing incredible faculty, devoted to rich curricula in an environment centered on what is true, good, and beautiful. 

An essential component of our educational experience extends beyond the traditional classroom, taking shape in robust athletic offerings, a myriad of artistic pursuits, and an array of enriching extracurricular activities. All in all, we are fueled by a passion to reinvent American public education and to deliver that education far and wide.


Today, we serve approximately 11,000 students at 23 academies across the Phoenix-metropolitan area. From our humble beginnings as a single entity in rented space, we have become Arizona’s largest not-for-profit charter school network, and in 2014, we began expanding our model to include academies in Texas.


Every day, we play a vital role in educating and inspiring the next generation. We honor this commitment unequivocally and consider it a true privilege. Thank you for your support and for being a part of our community.



eriks sig

Erik Twist, President 
Great Hearts Arizona 

Our Mission

The mission of Great Hearts Academies is to create a national network of academically rigorous, classical, liberal arts primary, middle, and high schools. This network will prepare its graduates for success in the most highly selective colleges and universities in the nation, and to be leaders in creating a more philosophical, humane, and just society. Great Hearts’ public academies surpass the best public and private school options in academic outcomes, student moral formation, and comprehensive extra-curricular participation.

The ultimate goal of the organization is to graduate “great-hearted” young men and women who possess a sense of destiny and purpose that is directed to the service of the greater good.  By engaging in an intense and formative dialogue with the Great Books and Ideas of Western Culture, by conversing with peers and teachers who also seek the truth, students come to understand more fully what it means to be a human being.

Our Goals

Based on the success of the founding academies, Great Hearts sets high goals for all of the schools in the network:

Average annual student retention rate of 90%.

90% of graduates will directly attend a four-year college or university.

The average total score of seniors on any portion of the SAT college board exams will exceed 600. Example: 1200, previous scoring system, 1800, new scoring system.

75% of high school students will complete at least one extra-curricular season each year.

90% of parents who respond will rate their academy as successful in preparing their child for college and life.

All students will pass all portions of the mandatory AIMS graduation test by the end of the 11th grade; 90% of 10th graders will meet all standards on their first attempt.

Phoenix Growth

The Great Hearts network currently operates nineteen academies in the Phoenix Metro area. At capacity, the network will graduate nearly 1,000 students each year. This critical mass of highly impressive graduates will change the educational landscape in Phoenix, and the Great Hearts network will be a catalyst for reforming public education in Arizona and nationally.

Indicators of Success

Great Hearts sets high goals for all of the schools in the network, and tracks their progress continuously.  Please see the Quarterly Report for the most recent data.