In a world where technology and social media infiltrate most areas of our lives, understanding how to communicate has become more crucial than ever. Some studies have shown that this infiltration has harmed our ability to communicate. We teach our students the importance of understanding what messages they are sending and how to manage these messages to ensure they are communicating competently and efficiently.

Public Speaking

Jerry Seinfeld once said, “According to most studies, people’s number one fear is public speaking. Number two is death. Death is number two. Does that sound right? This means to the average person, if you go to a funeral, you’re better off in the casket than doing the eulogy.” Our students learn public speaking principles that enable them to manage public speaking anxiety and become effective public speakers.

Conflict Management

Conflict cannot and should not be avoided. Conflict is a neutral term; the way we manage conflict determines whether it is good or bad. AC-LA teaches how to productively manage conflict so that a positive outcome can be achieved.


Listening and hearing are not the same. Listening is a mental process that can be learned and developed. Our focus is on developing critical listening skills to enhance communication competency.



Argumentation is the process of influencing change in beliefs and/or behaviors through communication. Argumentation has shaped and defined the world we live in. By teaching argumentation, we instill the skills needed to speak against injustice and ensure equality.

Critical Thinking

The importance of higher order thinking has been well studied and documented. The curriculum at AC-LA is designed so that our students can become proficient critical thinkers. Critical thinking skills have been tied to proficiencies in problem solving, analyzing information, reasoning, and decision making.

Speech & Debate

Forensics activities provide an arena for students to practice and become proficient in all of the skills AC-LA teaches.



AC-LA’s purpose is to develop current and future leaders within the community. Leaders not only voice their opinions but they also help others find their own voices. A big part of leadership is character.


Character can and has been defined in a variety of ways. At AC-LA, we define character as traits that include persistence, self-control, curiosity, conscientiousness, grit and self-confidence. Our program is designed to instill and develop these traits in all of our students.