Notre Dame Academy is the only Pre-K2 through 12 Catholic school in Gwinnett County. Founded in 2005, ND Academy fulfills a longtime need for many families seeking a Catholic education in the northern suburbs of Atlanta.
ND Academy was the first Catholic elementary school in the nation to receive authorization from the prestigious International Baccalaureate (IB), which helps students “develop the intellectual, personal, emotional and social skills to live, learn and work in a rapidly globalizing world.” ND Academy also maintains dual SACS and AdvancED accreditations.
Notre Dame Academy was founded under the leadership of our existing Head of School, Debra M. Orr. Ms. Orr was more than a successful administrator in the Atlanta private school system; she was also a mom who wanted her son to attend a Catholic school in Gwinnett County. With assistance from other motivated, likeminded, resourceful parents and sponsorship from the Marist Order of Priests, Ms. Orr opened the school on August 14, 2005, with 151 students. This number grew to over 200 by the end of the first year, and ND Academy opened with 380 students in only its second year.
Today, the school is over 500 students strong and still holds the honor of being named the first Catholic elementary school in the nation to receive authorization from the International Baccalaureate. Founded under the guiding principles of the Marist community, the goal of Notre Dame Academy is to integrate the teachings of the Gospel within the context of academic content. Students with faith have a desire to critically examine the world around them and not accept statements as truths. Knowledge of the Gospel gives power to the learner to remain objective and independent when faced with the attitudes and habits of society.
We cannot succeed on knowledge alone. Notre Dame Academy believes in teaching children to identify problems, work cooperatively as a team, listen to others, take risks, and present their ideas. The academic program, combined with prayer and the teachings of the Catholic Church, provides students with a foundation that prepares them to excel in the global economy with awareness and sensitivity to the needs of others.