Regarding your child’s education…

Are you or your child feeling:


Schooling can often create tension between parents and their children, but it’s a tension that does not need to be there!


With so many options to explore, it can be challenging to choose the ideal educational environment and resources for your unique child.


Common Core just isn’t cutting it! When children (and parents) feel confused about learning, their self-esteem can be shattered.


Whether in school or homeschool, developing a community of people that can support you is vital to any child’s academic success.

Join PAX Academy and
rediscover the JOY of learning!

At PAX Academy, we believe that all of life is learning, and all learning is valuable, so it is time for us to live and learn outside of the traditional classroom “box.” Because every child is unique with their own unique passion and purpose, their education deserves to be as unique as they are!

Self-Directed Education (SDE), or “unschooling,” stems from an educational philosophy that children learn best that which they learn with joy. When we remove the force from our child’s education, that is when the fun truly begins! So let go of the stress of homework, workbooks, and worksheets. Set aside the curriculum and the lesson plans, and instead rediscover the JOY of learning!

If you’re ready to live and learn with passion, purpose, and peace, then PAX Academy is the place for you!

Pursue Your Passions.

Every child has unique passions and interests, and when you allow your children to pursue their passions – without judgment or fear – you will be amazed at the incredible things that they create!

Whether it be crafting or cooking, drawing or digging, building or brainstorming, singing or storytelling, exploring or experimenting, your child is free to learn what, when, where, why, and how they want.

Take Your Time.

When you understand that your child is on their own unique path, then you begin to see that there is no “ahead” and there is no “behind.” Your child’s path and pace are perfect.

Life is a marathon – not a race, so you are free to take as long or as slow as you need to get to the place that you want to be in this life.

Cherish Your Childhood.

The days are long, but the years are short. Cherish every moment of your child’s childhood before it’s too late.

By joining PAX Academy, you will be able to maximize the memories with your child and support them in making a smooth transition from childhood to adulthood by receiving a PAX Academy official transcript and diploma.

Join us! Let’s learn together!

Become a PAX Academy Student Today!

PAX Academy is the ultimate private “unschool” school!

At PAX Academy, we provide you with the freedom of unschooling under the protection of a registered private school.


For 1 Student

$ 400 $ 350

per year, with access to:

  • Enrollment Letter
  • One-on-One Consultations
  • Official Transcripts
  • Certified Diploma
  • Optional Online Courses
  • In-Person Program


For up to 5 Students

$ 2,000 $ 600

per year, with access to:

  • Enrollment Letter
  • One-on-One Consultations
  • Official Transcripts
  • Certified Diploma
  • Optional Online Courses
  • In-Person Program


For up to 20 Students

$ 8,000 $ 5,000

per year, with access to:

  • Enrollment Letter
  • One-on-One Consultations
  • Official Transcripts for your students
  • Certified Diplomas
  • Optional Online Courses
  • Support for Your In-Person Program

Do you live in or around Maryland?
Join us for our in-person program!


frequently asked questions

Click below to read the answers to our most Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs).

What is PAX Academy?

PAX Academy is a non-profit church-exempt private K-12 school registered in the state of Maryland under the guidance and supervision of PAX Ministries Free Church. In Maryland, schools that are established under the governance of a church are exempt from any and all educational requirements of the state. Our legal structure provides families with the freedom of unschooling under the protection of a private school.

Do I have to be a Christian or a member of the church to attend PAX Academy?

No, anyone is welcome to enroll in our private school.

What is the educational philosophy of PAX Academy?

At PAX Academy, we believe:

  1. God has created each unique individual with unique passions, talents, and gifts that are meant to be cultivated with the gifts of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. (Galatians 5:22-23)
  2. God has entrusted parents with the primary responsibility for training and educating their own children. As a parent, you are your child’s first and forever teacher, so in addition to providing self-directed courses for children, we also believe in providing education for the parents as well. (Proverbs 22:6) 
  3. God has called us to live and learn with faith and freedom in every area of our life – including our child’s education. As a result, we do not promote any form of force or coercion in our relationships with our children. We want you to experience the fullness of educational freedom! While you and your child may choose to use a curriculum that meets his or her individual goals and needs, we do not promote or require the use of any curriculum nor do we require testing of any kind. (Galatians 5:1)
  4. God has commanded us to live in peace – and that starts at home, but it doesn’t stay at home. We call ourselves “Peaceful Worldschoolers” because we are committed to cultivating peace in the world beginning right in our own hearts and homes and then sharing that peace with those around us. We seek to live in peace with God, with self, with family, with our community, with our church, with nature, and with the world. (Romans 12:18)

What curriculum do you use or recommend?

At PAX Academy, we believe that “the child is the curriculum,” but we are not “anti-curriculum.” As long as the child is choosing, that is what matters most! We do not recommend, promote, or sell any curriculum, however, we understand that many children and adults benefit from taking structured courses, so you are free to choose your own curriculum (or choose not to use any curriculum). We also plan to offer individual online courses for children and adults, such as:

  • Gospel-Based Parenting: A Biblical Study on Discipline and Discipling
  • Reading and Typing: Learning to Read through Learning to Type
  • Become a Self-Published Author: From Brainstorming to Best-Seller
  • Self-Directed Learning 101
  • Transitioning to College and Career
  • Biblical Cosmology
  • and more!

What ages/grades can enroll?

We are a K-12 private school registered in Maryland. In order to enroll in Kindergarten, your child must be 5 years old by September 1st.

We also accept adults that wish to obtain their High School Diploma. If you have additional questions, book a FREE 15-minute call with Angela.

What is the cost to enroll?

To enroll in PAX Academy, you can register as:

  • a single student ($350/year)
  • a family of up to 5 students ($600/year)
  • a teacher for a class of up to 20 students ($5,000/year)

If you would like to register a group of 21 or more students, please reach out to Angela Harders for large group pricing at:

When is the deadline to enroll?

We offer year-round open enrollment, so you may enroll at anytime for this current school year or for the following school year. Our school year begins on August 1st and ends on July 31st of the following year.

How do I withdraw my child from their current school?

In order to withdraw your child from his/her current school, you should submit a written withdraw letter. Some states/counties have a specific withdraw form that must be completed. You may let the school know that you are withdrawing them from their school and enrolling them in a private school effective immediately or on a particular date.

We will request the school to transfer your child’s academic records and let you know once we receive their records either digitally or by mail. 

If you were homeschooling prior to enrolling in PAX Academy, we recommend that you notify your state that your child is now enrolled in a private school.

To learn more about the requirements of your state or county, please reach out directly to a representative of your county or review your state’s laws on the HSLDA website.

What additional services or support do you provide?

Making the transition from school to homeschool/unschool is exciting, but it can also be terrifying! Many families wrestle with normal doubts and fears because we want to know that we are doing the best for our children, and it can be scary to try something new. We are here to remind you that you are not alone! While we want to be able to provide you with as much freedom and independence as possible, please know that we are here to support you and hold your hand (as you may need) along the way.

Our founding director, Angela Harders, is a certified Special Education teacher with over 12 years of experience in the public schools and over 20 years working with homeschooling families. She is also a single mother that has been unschooling her own children for over 9 years. We invite you to book a one-on-one consultation with Angela in order to get support with:

  • Adapting to meet the needs of your child
  • Brainstorming a self-directed learning plan with your child
  • Creating an ideal learning environment for your child 
  • Discussing the various learning styles and methodologies
  • Exploring post-secondary options
  • Finding joy in the journey towards educational freedom
  • Growing in our knowledge of God, our child, and ourselves
  • Healing from school trauma
  • Implementing a custom self-directed learning plan
  • Joining your child in pursuing your unique passions and interests
  • Keeping records to add to your child’s transcript that highlights his/her experience and expertise
  • Looking for the learning that your child is naturally doing

What are the fees for additional services?

Please see below for the pricing for various fees.

  • Consultations ($100 per 45 minutes)
  • Official Transcripts ($25 for first; $15 for additional transcripts)
  • Diploma ($50 for first, $30 for replacement)
  • Custom Letter ($35 per page)
  • Notarization ($20) – Any document that we issue may be notarized.
  • Apostille: Hague Convention Country ($75 per document)
  • Postage
  • FedEx Standard Overnight ($20 – 48 states only – not available in AK or HI)
  • USPS Express Mail – Domestic ($30)
  • USPS Global Express Mail – International ($40)
  • USPS Priority Mail ($9)
  • Courses: Course prices vary and are listed in our course list.

All fees are non-refundable and subject to change.

What is “unschooling”?

“Unschooling” is a term that is was coined by educator and philosopher John Holt in the 1970s. He believed that children should be free to learn naturally, based on their unique passions and interests – the exact opposite of the kind of learning that occurs in compulsory schools. He observed the negative impacts of force and coercion on a child’s learning and proposed that children could and should learn with freedom and fun.

Since the 1970s, many people have adopted an unschooling lifestyle which is centered around principles of mutual respect, autonomy, love, and trust. To learn more about unschooling, check out our blog.

If you would like to learn more about unschooling, register for our FREE Live Unschooling Q&A (o puedes asistir la reunión en español) monthly meeting with Angela Harders via Zoom.

What is “deschooling”?

“Deschooling” is a process through which a child will “decompress” when transitioning from school to home. Many children experience trauma while in a forced schooling environment, and so they need some time to “unlearn” and “relearn” how to be a self-directed learner. During the deschooling period, parents should not force anything “schoolish.” In fact, it may appear as though your child isn’t “doing anything” – or at least anything that may seem productive to the untrained eye.

Instead of focusing on teaching your child, you should instead focus on becoming a student of your child. Invest the time and energy into observing your child, connecting with your child, and learning all about his or her passions, interests, skills, preferred learning style, etc. Look for the learning that they are already naturally doing day in and day out.

We recommend deschooling one month for every year that your child (or you) has been in school. 

For example, if your child is in 2nd grade, then they have attended 3 years of school: Kindergarten, 1st grade, and 2nd grade, so they would need approximately 3 months of deschooling. 

If you have a Master’s Degree, you have been in school for about 20 years, so you would need approximately 20 months of deschooling.

The reality is that the deschooling process is never truly “finished.” As our children grow, we will continually be confronted with new beliefs and concerns about our child’s education that we will then have the opportunity to process and work through so that we too can live and learn with faith and freedom.

What happens after I enroll?

After enrolling in PAX Academy, you will receive an Enrollment Package via email within 5 business days which will include:

  • Enrollment Verification Letter (for student)
  • Teacher Verification Letter (for parent/guardian)
  • Student/Teacher ID Template
  • Unofficial Transcript
Do I have to file a Notice of Intent to homeschool with my school district?

It depends on the laws in your state.

In most states, by registering in PAX Academy, you will be in compliance with your state’s compulsory attendance laws as a private school student and will not have to comply with its homeschooling laws. That means that you will not have to file a Notice of Intent to homeschool or comply with any testing, reporting, or evaluation requirements that are typically required by homeschoolers.

However, not all states will accept enrollment in PAX Academy as a means to avoid their homeschooling requirements. It is your responsibility to research and comply with your state/country’s laws.

Is PAX Academy an umbrella school?

Yes. PAX Academy is a registered private school and allows you to homeschool under the umbrella of a private school in states that allow that.

Is PAX Academy an online school?

No. While we provide courses online, there are no requirements to register or take any additional courses. By enrolling in PAX Academy, you and your child are free to learn what, when, where, why, and how you choose. If you need help with choosing resources to support your child’s learning, please book a one-on-one consultation with Angela Harders:

Do you have an in-person program?

Yes! If you live in or around Maryland, we have an in-person program for children in Grades K through 5 on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10 AM to 3 PM. We also offer “Field Trip Friday” where every Friday, we take a field trip in our community. To learn more about our in-person programs, check out our in-person registration page.

If you are interested in starting your own in-person program, please reach out to us via email:

Will my child receive a transcript/diploma?

Yes! By registering in PAX Academy, your child will be eligible to receive a certified transcript and official diploma that they will be able to use in order to attend college or begin their career path.

Will my child be able to go to college/university?

Absolutely! Colleges and Universities are usually very eager to accept students from private schools that offer alternative education opportunities. In fact, this is one of the benefits of being a student with PAX Academy, because you will be able to apply to college as a private school student and avoid the tedious process of applying as a homeschooler.

If my child is enrolled in PAX Academy, can we travel state to state or country to country?

Yes! You may enroll in PAX Academy from any state or country in the world. You can also travel from state to state and country to country as proof of enrollment in a private U.S. school. 

Keep in mind that you are responsible for understanding the laws in your state/country and complying with them.

Do you need additional support regarding your child’s education?