Community Programs

Derrick Thomas Academy

The Derrick Thomas Academy (DTA), a tuition-free public charter school, was launched on June 3, 2001. Located in downtown Kansas City at 201 East Armour Plaza, DTA has set a precedence of excellence in education. Since its inception, DTA has thrived and expanded to include 950 Kindergarten through 8th grade students. The student population consists of a mixture of students from the immediate neighborhood as well as students from other areas of Kansas City, MO.

The facility is the first-ever public elementary charter school named in honor of an NFL hero. Undoubtedly former Chiefs LB Derrick Thomas would he humbled to see his name emblazed on this edifice. A 2009 inductee into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Thomas left and indelible legacy on the field. However, his true passion came off the gridiron. In 1990, he established the Derrick Thomas Third and Long Foundation to help fight childhood illiteracy. Thomas' passion for community service influenced more than 60 subsequent members of the Red and Gold that have created their own individual player foundation and/or charitable programming. In recognition of his work in the community, this 10-year NFL veteran was voted the 1993 NFL Man of the Year. He was also saluted by President George H. Bush as his 832nd Point of Light in 1992. Thomas was the only NFL player so honored. 

DTA is committed to its students' safety and achievement. The school understands that first and foremost it must build a relationship with its students. DTA believes in an active level of parent and community involvement. Realizing its parents know their children better than anyone, DTA staff welcomes their suggestions and support. Parents are welcome to participate in their child's classes at any time without an appointment, although one-on-one discussions between teachers and parents do require an appointment.

For more information on the school, please dial 816.531.714 or visit