Tysie and students


Welcome to Crossroads Charter Schools! Our goal is to provide a high-quality education with a sense of community, belonging, and acceptance for all students and families. 

We desire the best for every child. Success isn’t accidental. It is the result of a focused team effort, and everyone has a part to play if we are to achieve our goals and reach our potential. Students must come with the attitude of expecting to learn and willing to work hard. Our staff will provide the quality instruction that our students deserve and that our families expect. We encourage parents and caregivers to reassure their students often and have regular conversations with them about school and their work. Together, we can accomplish great things!

To our supportive community of volunteers, donors, and partners – thank you for believing in our mission to prepare and inspire students to build a better tomorrow by providing an academically rigorous Pre-K-12 education in a creative, collaborative, community-focused environment. We are in this together!

As our vision states, our students will be scholarly, culturally literate, and service oriented individuals who will pursue their dreams relentlessly and have a positive impact on their family, their community and the world. We focus not only on academic learning, but also on being kind, respectful, productive community members. That’s the Crossroads Way!

With appreciation,

Tysie McDowell

Co-Founder and Superintendent

Our Story

Crossroads Charter Schools is a network of four schools which offer a dynamic Pre-K-12 education in the heart of downtown Kansas City.

Crossroads Charter Schools was founded with the intent of reducing the gap between the number of “high quality seats” in classrooms within the Kansas City Public School boundaries, and the number of children seeking those seats. In our short history, our students have made strong academic gains, and our school has built an excellent reputation among the community as a place of high quality instruction and innovation in learning.

The network began in 2012 with just one school, “Crossroads Academy,” now Crossroads Academy – Central Street, which offered a unique learning model utilizing downtown Kansas City as an extended campus for learning. Originally a K-8th grade school serving 190 scholars, the school now serves over 350 in grades K-6th.

In 2016, a second school was added, Crossroads Academy – Quality Hill opened to 186 K-3rd graders and now serves over 250 students in K-5th grades.

Crossroads High School began in the fall of 2017. Classes were held temporarily at the Park University Downtown Campus while a permanent campus was secured. The permanent location of 816 Broadway was announced in February 2018 and opened in August of the same year. Additionally, a name change to Crossroads Preparatory Academy was announced. Crossroads Prep serves over 400 students in grades 7th-12th grades.

At capacity our K-12 schools collectively serve just over 1,050 students.



In 2015 Crossroads Academy was rated the highest performing charter school in the state of Missouri on the state’s Annual Performance Report (APR) with a score of 98.6%. 


Crossroads matched the APR score of 98.6% for the second consecutive year. 


Crossroads was named the MO Charter School of the Year by the Missouri Charter School Public School Association. 


Crossroads Prep graduated 49 students, its first class of seniors.

  • Following a unanimous vote by the State Board of Education, DESE designated Crossroads Charter Schools a high-quality charter school and granted a 10 year charter renewal. 
  • Following a unanimous vote by the board of directors of the recently fully accredited Kansas City Public Schools (KCPS), the Crossroads Charter Schools’ board of directors also voted unanimously to approve KCPS as the new charter sponsor.

Crossroads Charter Schools offer a unique model that emphasizes community engagement and 21st Century Learning. We bring our students outside into the downtown community whenever possible to experience learning in the real world. As active community members our students go to daily recess at Barney Allis Plaza and Case Park and visit the Central Library regularly. We hold student performances at downtown theaters such as The Folly Theater and Quality Hill Playhouse, and we frequent downtown galleries, parks, and businesses. Project-based learning units bring students into real world experiences to solve real problems. Whenever possible, we welcome professionals of our downtown community into our school as guest speakers or volunteers to share their expertise with students.

As we continue to dream BIG, we are buoyed by the support of many – our parents, families, volunteers, donors, and downtown neighbors – and we are making a tremendous impact in the lives of our scholars and in downtown Kansas City.