It was an honor and privilege to interview Brittney Thomas, Options Learning Coach of the Year! It was Brittney’s son Kaiden’s first year away from traditional schooling. And they loved it!
“Kaiden is super bright and motivated,” shares Thomas. “He has always done well in the traditional brick and mortar school, but often finished early and was easily bored. Because of this, Kaiden sort of went into himself and let others answer questions in class. Kaiden needed a more diverse curriculum, more options, and flexibility.”
The Compass Options Program provided just that for Kaiden. He began to thrive in the program, with the flexibility and having a say in how he wanted to learn. Kaiden is ten, going into 5th grade, and he loves all things computers; computer science, building computers, and Minecraft. He also loves to dance, play basketball, create his own comic books, which he started at age 6!
Brittney found Compass through a referral from a friend whose children attend Compass. Her friend had attended a few other Charters Schools but landed on Compass, as the most organized and supportive of scholars. Brittney shared that it is very different when you hear about a school firsthand, from another family’s experience; it makes all the difference.
Brittney and Kaiden made the transition to Compass when Compass had an influx of students last year. She sings praises to Danielle Kiefner, Educational Facilitator, who was the lifesaver of lifesavers. Danielle reeled all of the parents in, answering all their questions, and provided 24-hour turnaround. Danielle created a sense of calm in that chaotic time of transition.
Brittney is a true superstar! As a former student-athlete, she played basketball in college at the University of Las Vegas on a basketball scholarship. She worked for the State of California, the YMCA, NBA, and then found her love for the non-profit sector. She worked her way up at the Costa Mesa Boys & Girls Clubs as the Director of Operations, and then the Interim CEO.
As a single Mom, Brittney began homeschooling Kaiden and saw the great need for support of athletes in their academic journeys. She started Above and Beyond Athletics (abanation.com), serving Orange County and now expanding into Los Angeles. Her current homeschool group has scholars all over, from Rancho Santa Margarita to Sherman Oaks! Initially, the focus was on athletes and has recently expanded to the world of computer science because of her son’s passion. Brittney shares that she is an avid lifelong learner and started her non-profit because youth development is familiar and a passion of hers. They meet scholars at every phase of development and help them transition to college and beyond.
The goal of Above and Beyond Athletics is to introduce this education platform to other families, to make sure that they are aware of all their school options, and having a positive experience. Their mission is to engage, educate, and empower youth from diverse populations to be successful leaders, champions, and athletes in high school, college, and life. With the vision to ensure that all youth increase their ability to succeed, fulfill their highest potential, and inspire future generations in their sport, academics, and community. She shares that all the families that are referred come back for further services.
Congratulations to Brittney on all your success. We look forward to seeing what the future brings to Kaiden and your non-profit. Thank you for choosing Compass!
Learn more about Compass Charter Schools here.