Why choose Macomber Center?

Macomber Center provides excellent opportunities to socialize with kids of all ages. Our campus is located on 114 acres of playing fields and wooded areas, and borders the Ashland Town Forest, allowing for endless outdoor activities and exploration. Indoors we provide our members with the resources to pursue their interests and passions in a wide variety of subjects, including academics, music, and performing arts.

Is Macomber Center a school?

No, the Center is a place of resources for families who wish to pursue an educational path different from that of traditional public or private schools. We make available all the resources children need to direct their own education. Each member must be registered as a homeschooler in the town where they live.

Does Macomber Center offer classes?

Macomber Center has no curriculum and offers no academic evaluation.  How members choose to spend their time at the Center is entirely up to them.  They not only decide what to learn, but when and how to learn it.  If a member wants an adult’s help exploring an area of interest, scheduled meetings (either one-on-one or in small groups) can be arranged.  But providing a class is just one of the ways that an adult might offer to help.  Furthermore, when classes occur they vary widely depending on what makes sense for a given subject and often the role of the adult is not so much to “teach” but rather to help the kids plot a course and help keep things moving in a productive direction.

Does Macomber Center have any requirements?

We require that each member be responsible for him- or her-self; be able to abide by our rules, primarily dealing with personal and communal safety; be willing to participate in our community as a productive member to the best of her or his ability; and we require that all members treat one other with fairness and respect.

What are the ages of the kids at the Center? 

Our members range in age from 5 years old to 18 years old. We are an age-mixed community, and all of our members interact freely with one another. We strive to maintain an even distribution with respect to age and gender. 

When is Macomber Center open?

The Center is open from 9am to 5pm, Monday through Friday. Our year begins in early September, and ends in early June. We have a two-week break in December, and one week each in February and April. More details can be found on our Calendar page.

Do you offer a diploma?

Because we are not a school, we do not offer a diploma. However, a diploma is generally not required for college admission. (See below.)

How do kids get into college?

We offer support for whatever path members choose to pursue after their time at Macomber. Staff spend time talking with members about what’s important to them, including helping them develop interests and skills in many areas. As members become older, this can include mentoring and advising about their plans and objectives for what they would like to do after Macomber, including college. Colleges are eager for applicants who are motivated and self-directed and know who they are and why they want to go to college. Macomber offers members the opportunity to do that. Some ways members have used their time at Macomber to prepare for college at have included doing tutorials with staff in a variety of subjects, taking a formal class with exams and grades, tutoring to support a work at community college, tutoring to prepare for the HiSET for a Massachusetts high school diploma, and tutoring for the SAT or ACT. 

Do you help parents register as homeschoolers?

We can offer assistance in notifying your town that you intend to homeschool and complying with their requirements. It’s not hard. Several Macomber staff have experience as homeschooling parents complying with their town’s requirements. We can provide sample letters that we, and other parents, have used. We can put you in touch with other Macomber families in your town for specific guidance. We have also offered parent meetings where you can ask questions of Macomber staff and network with other Macomber families.

How do you resolve conflicts?

Most conflicts are resolved on the spot, between members, with little or no intervention by adults. Other times an adult may step in to help with this. From time to time, if there is a conflict which is persistent and difficult to resolve, a member may request help using our Macomber Center Conflict Resolution Process. But no one is required to use it.

How can I visit Macomber Center?

We hold Open Houses throughout the year during which you may visit the Center, meet some of the members and the staff, and check out our gorgeous surroundings! Please check our Calendar page for dates of upcoming Open Houses. If you are unable to make our next open house due to a scheduling conflict, or if you just can’t wait to see our fabulous Center, you may contact us via phone or email to set up an appointment.

How do I join Macomber Center?

Macomber Center offers four levels of membership: 5 days per week, 4 days per week, 3 days per week and 2 days per week. Everyone wanting to join the Center needs to complete a visit week, which for people choosing a part time option may be completed over a two week period. We offer pro-rated fees beginning November 1 of the year. Details about fees can be found on our Membership page. 

What if I don’t see the answer to my question here?

Please contact us by email (contact form) or by phone (508 202-9488) and we will be happy to talk with you!