• Welcome Innovation Academy Students and Families!


    I am thrilled to launch Innovation Academy this year as Medford’s newest high school of choice; a hopeful option where students engage in hands-on, project-based learning. Our school district believes that offering multiple roads to graduation is key to best serving our students and community and Innovation Academy is an excellent new option for our valley.  


    I am truly honored to lead as Principal of Innovation Academy. I believe first and foremost in student voice and that we can better meet our student's needs by listening, letting them lead, and embedding learning through meaningful experiences. Our staff is passionate about showing students how their learning applies across content areas and to our world.


    My family is with me on this journey as we moved from Newberg, Oregon last summer. My husband Dennis is a 3rd grade teacher in the Medford School District and our three sons attend South and Oakdale. We are proud to be a part of our community where we work, learn, and explore.


    I graduated from the University of Oregon in 2004 with a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics and a minor in Special Education and headed to Pacific University for my Masters of Arts in Teaching. I studied abroad at the University of Auckland in New Zealand and received my Master of Arts in Teaching. When we returned from New Zealand, I began my teaching career in the North Clackamas School District, where I served for five years. Small schools and Advisory called me to the Newberg School District in 2010, where I served for 12 years as a high school math teacher, STEM Instructional Coach, and middle school and district administrator. Last year I joined the Medford School District as the principal of Central Medford High School and I couldn’t be more excited to launch our new school this year.


    Medford’s motto of “ALL are learning and learning is for ALL” is at the heart of our work. We are excited for students to engage in hands-on learning that will allow them to earn credits towards graduation while integrating their learning in real-time at Innovation Academy. If you have questions, please do not hesitate to connect with any of our staff throughout the year.


    To our students, I cannot wait to meet you! I believe students are at the center of all that we do, and the relationships between our families and school community are vital to the success of our students. We encourage you to become involved, stay connected, and let us know how we can best support you throughout the year. Please know that my door is always open, and I welcome your presence and positive input throughout the year. Make sure to follow us on both Facebook and Instagram and be a part of our journey! #InnovationToGraduation #TigersTogether


    I look forward to meeting you all soon. We are going to do amazing things together! 



    Dr. Cass Thonstad


    Innovation Academy