Thornton Academy

438 Main Street
Saco, ME 04072
Thornton Academy is a private, co-ed, boarding and day school for grades 6-12, providing them with the best opportunities for higher education and beyond.
We challenge all students to innovate, grow, and succeed in a changing world.
With over 200 courses offered, Thornton Academy has some of the most comprehensive academic and arts programs in New England.
Thornton Academy has been voted the Best Private School in Maine for 2020 and 2021.

Quick Stats (2024)

  • Grades: (Boarding) 6-12
  • Enrollment: 1,571 students
  • Yearly Tuition (Boarding Students): $50,800
  • Yearly Tuition (Day Students): $15,100
  • Acceptance rate: 50%
  • Average class size: 19 students
  • Application Deadline: None / Rolling
  • Source: Verified school update

Top Rankings

Thornton Academy ranks among the top 20 boarding schools (out of 285 schools) for:

School Overview

Definition of Terms | 2023 School Data
Thornton Academy
Boarding School Avg.
School Focus
College Preparatory
College Preparatory
Grades Offered (Boarding)
School Type
Religious Affiliation
Year Founded
Campus Size
80 acres
126 acres

Student Body

1571 students
319 students
% Students of Color
% International Students
% Students Boarding
Average SAT Score
(Out of 1600)
* National Avg. »View
Offers Post-Grad Year

Academics and Faculty

Saturday Classes
Classroom Dress Code
Average Class Size
19 students
* National Avg. »18
Student : Teacher Ratio
# of AP / Advanced Courses Offered
ESL Courses Offered
% Faculty with Advanced Degree
Summer Program Offered
Summer Program Details

Tuition Cost

Endowment Size
$10 million
$27 million
Yearly Tuition
(Boarding Students)
Yearly Tuition
(Day Students)
Summer Program Cost
($3,000 per session, two sessions available for 2022. Cost includes: Three meals on weekdays, two meals on weekends, boarding in our modern dormitories, health insurance, all activity fees, local transportation, class materials.)
% Students on Financial Aid
Merit Scholarships Offered

Acceptance Rate

Application Deadline
None / Rolling
Jan. 15
Acceptance Rate
Director of Admissions
Clint Williams
Associate Director of Admissions
Megan Cornwall

AP / Advanced Courses

# of AP / Advanced Courses Offered
AP Biology , AP Calculus AB, AP Calculus BC, AP Chemistry, AP Chinese, AP Computer Science A, AP Economics, AP Environmental Science, AP European History, AP French, AP Government & Politics - US, AP Human Geography , AP Language and Composition , AP Latin, AP Literature and Composition , AP Music Theory, AP Physics, AP Physics C, AP Physics I & II, AP Psychology, AP Spanish, AP Statistics, AP Studio Art, AP US History



Total Extracurricular Organizations
Club or Organization:
Academic Decathlon, Action Team, Ambassadors Club, Amnesty International Club, Anglers Society, Animal Rights Club, Anime Club, Arabic Club, Astronomy Club, Carpe Diem (Newspaper), Chess Club, Chinese Language & Culture Club, Civil Rights, Classics Club, Debate Team, Environmental Club, Fashion Design Club, French Club, German Club, GSTA, Interact Club, Math Team, Model United Nations, National History Day, National Honor Society, Neuroscience Club, Outdoor Adventure Club, Ribbon Club, Robotics Team, RSVP, Science Olympiad, Spanish Club, Speech Team, Student Council, TA Tour Guides, Table Top Game Club, TATV, TEDxTA, Tripod (Yearbook), Women and Gender Equal Rights Club

Arts and Music Programs:
Art Club, Ink Magazine, Jazz Combo, Orchestra, Photography Club, Student Media Team, TA Players, Technical Theater Crew, Treble Choir

Recreational Athletic Programs:
Cycling Club, Equestrian Club, Ski Club

College Matriculation

Year: 2010 - 2014
10 Most Popular College Choices  (# Enrolled)
American University
Boston College
Boston University
Brown University
Columbia University
Dartmouth College
Duke University
New York University's Tisch School of the Arts
Parsons School of Design
University of California Los Angeles (UCLA)

School Notes

  • Thornton Academy, founded in 1811, is a co-educational, independent boarding and day school serving grades 6 through 12. Located on Maine's southern coast in the city of Saco, we are one of the nation's longest operating independent schools.
  • Thornton's commitment to excellence enables students to reach their full potential and flourish in a changing world. We offer a safe and secure family environment where every student can find his or her place. Here, students are free to express their own individual ideas, cultures, and dreams, and all students benefit from our unique campus environment and its global perspective.
  • Our historic, 80-acre campus is located near some of the finest beaches, ski mountains, scenic areas, and cultural offerings in New England. We are a 90-minute drive from Boston, and 15 minutes from Portland, a vibrant, small city with a working waterfront. 
  • Thornton Academy offers more than 200 courses in a variety of subjects, including 24 advanced placement (AP) classes, 42 honors level classes, seven foreign languages, and award-winning performing and visual arts programming. Our new state-of-the-art STEM Center (Science-Technology-Engineering-Math) includes four biology and chemistry laboratories, and one engineering lab. Our New Media Center features the TATV television studio, and hosts our classes in computer programming, multimedia production, journalism, and video game programming. 
  • Outside of the classroom, Thornton Academy offers 57 sports teams and 46 after-school clubs and activities, creating plenty of opportunity for students to pursue their passions and discover new talents. 
  • Thornton Academy accreditations: NEASC, NAIS, ISANNE, MAIS
Source: Verified school update

Frequently Asked Questions

How much does Thornton Academy cost?
Thornton Academy's tuition is approximately $50,800 for boarding students and $15,100 for day students.
What is the acceptance rate of Thornton Academy?
The acceptance rate of Thornton Academy is 50%, which is lower than the boarding school average of 60%.
What sports does Thornton Academy offer?
Thornton Academy offers 23 interscholastic sports: Alpine Skiing, Baseball, Basketball, Cheering, Cross Country, Cross Country Running, Dance, Field Hockey, Football, Freestyle Skiing, Golf, Ice Hockey, Lacrosse, Soccer, Softball, Swimming, Swimming and Diving, Tennis, Track, Track and Field, Volleyball, Winter Track and Wrestling.
Does Thornton Academy offer a summer program?
Yes, Thornton Academy offers a summer program. Visit their summer school page for more information.
What is Thornton Academy's ranking?
Thornton Academy ranks among the top 20 boarding schools for Large student body (number of students), High # of AP/advanced courses offered and Oldest founding date.
When is the application deadline for Thornton Academy?
The application deadline for Thornton Academy is rolling (applications are reviewed as they are received year-round).
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Quick Stats (2024)

  • Grades: (Boarding) 6-12
  • Enrollment: 1,571 students
  • Yearly Tuition (Boarding Students): $50,800
  • Yearly Tuition (Day Students): $15,100
  • Acceptance rate: 50%
  • Average class size: 19 students
  • Application Deadline: None / Rolling
  • Source: Verified school update

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