Ad Astra: Musk’s Exclusive School
The school of our dreams.
The ever-Inspiring Elon Musk decided to build his own exclusive school ‘’Ad Astra’’Latin for ”to the stars” back in 2014 simply because he was unhappy with his kids’ education, he told Beijing Television.
The school is as innovative as its founder, it doesn’t abide by grades structures. Classes are based on skill sets. It houses just 20 pupils; his five children and 15 of SpaceX employees’ children, according to Musk’s Beijing interview. US schools were not adhering to the values and principles Musk wanted, so he was inspired to build one from scratch.
“It’s only a year old, but they like it. I just didn’t see that regular schools were doing the things that needed to be done…so I thought, well, let’s see what we can do,” Musk said in the interview.
Ad Astra is located in a mansion in southern California. Many neighboring residents have heard about the school and wanted to enroll their children, but couldn’t apply. The school has no online presence, neither a website nor social media accounts to take applications.
Musk shared with the interviewer: “What makes it different from most other schools is that there aren’t any grades. All the children go in the same grade at the same time. [Principle one] Some people love English, some people love maths, some people love music, and they have different abilities at different times.
It makes more sense to cater the education to match their aptitudes and abilities. So that’s one principle. [Principle two] It’s important to teach problem-solving – not just the tools to fix the problem. Like teaching the students how engines work, instead of screwdrivers and wrenches,” he continued.
It goes without saying Musk is a believer of practical learning, and time-efficient methods, so with those educational approaches, ‘’the relevance of the tools becomes apparent,’’ he added.
During the interview, he also explained that his kids love going to school and hate long vacations. Musk then recalled his time back in school and said:”I hated going to school. It was torture.” Musk’s mother, Maye Musk, dietician and former model, has spoken before about her son’s troubling times at school, how he used to hate it, and how he was bullied by his peers.
According to Ibtimes, Ad Astra opened in September 2014 and by April it had 14 students, increasing to 20 with the new school term starting in September 2015. Three teachers are currently employed.