Educational Design

To support the mission, vision, and values, the Academy has selected five guiding principles. They are: Academic Excellence, Health & Wellness, Leadership Development, Global Citizenship, and Civic Engagement. These principles serve as the foundation for all curricular development, instructional programs, and activities for the school. The principles also address many of the 21st Century skills and interdisciplinary themes necessary for success.

Academic Excellence

The Academy promotes, encourages, and supports academic excellence. Teachers utilize a “blended learning” approach to teach several content areas. This approach provides increased opportunities for individualized instruction to assist students with mastering a determined body of knowledge within the state required core curricula and acquire the skills necessary to successfully graduate from twelfth grade.The Academy’s curricular programs and resources assist in the development of academically accomplished young men and women who are confident in their abilities, innovative in their thinking, and ethical individuals who are active members of their community.

In addition, the Academy’s academic programs provide learning experiences to guide students in becoming:

  • voracious readers,
  • effective oral and written communicators,
  • to speak articulately,
  • creative and analytical thinkers, and
  • proficient with technology.

Students also apply mathematical and scientific principles and appreciate and value artistic expression. The school recognizes that learning differences exist within its student population and work within its mission and resources to determine the best strategies for developing individual students’ potential.

The Academy has established a goal for students to make at least 1.25 years growth annually as measured by the Northwest Evaluation Assessment (NWEA).

Health & Wellness

DIA is dedicated to promoting and supporting a healthy lifestyle. Students will participate in a comprehensive health, wellness, and physical education program that fosters self-discovery, personal responsibility, teamwork, leadership, and a positive sense of accomplishment.We are committed to collaborating with our lunch provider and local organizations to offer a healthy breakfast, lunch and snack.

We will work closely with the YMCA of Metropolitan Detroit and medical facilities to provide on-going health screenings, information and classes on healthy strategies to implement at school and home. The YMCA and the Detroit Innovation Academy are devoted to improving the health and well-being of our students, families and communities.

Leadership Development

The Academy believes in strong, well grounded moral values and ethical behaviors in developing a foundation for one’s life and in becoming responsible citizens. In keeping with these beliefs, the school will engage students and integrate student learning experiences across the curriculum that will incorporate the basic tenets of values and ethical behaviors, which are essential to responsible citizenship within a democratic society. These tenets include a respect for diversity, an understanding of the importance of inclusion, fundamentals of group work and conflict resolution, and the fundamentals of ethical behavior. By valuing both differences and similarities among students, faculty, families and the community, students will be encouraged to develop a positive self-image and a respect for the rights of others.DIA is inspired by Dr. Stephen Covey’s book, “The Leader In Me” which incorporates the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, with academic achievement as a strong foundation for the school’s culture.

7 Habits of Highly Effective People:

  • Habit 1: Be Proactive® • You’re in Charge
  • Habit 2: Begin With the End in Mind® • Have a Plan
  • Habit 3: Put First Things First® • Work First, Then Play
  • Habit 4: Think Win-Win® • Everyone Can Win
  • Habit 5: Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood® • Listen Before You Talk
  • Habit 6: Synergize® • Together Is Better
  • Habit 7: Sharpen the Saw® • Balance Feels Best

The habits show students the importance of being a leader, making good choices, and developing a good work ethic, all of which are characteristics of a successful college student and/or employee. The process also teaches students personal leadership and 21st century life skills, such as goal setting, time management, teamwork, problem solving, respecting diversity, and life balance. Building a culture of success and addressing each student as a whole person is essential to the achievement of every student at DIA.

For more information visit

Global Citizenship

The YMCA and the Academy is committed to working with students to acquire an appreciation of world cultures, diversity, foreign language and global inter-connectedness. DIA will partner with the YUSA International Group and other organizations to:

  • Increase students awareness of global issues
  • Cultivate respect and appreciation for diversity
  • Help students understand the connections between their local actions and experiences and what is happening in the rest of the world
  • Prepare students for 21st century careers

Throughout the school year, students will participate, organize and lead a variety of activities including:

  • International speaker series
  • International celebrations and festivals
  • Oversees/International experiences for students
  • Virtual interactions with students from other countries

Civic Engagement

The YMCA and DIA are committed to Healthy Living, Youth Development and Social responsibility. We believe that each student has a role to play in serving others. Staff will connect community service projects to classroom learning. Students will collaborate with staff and community members in the planning and design of service projects. Students will also engage in thoughtful reflection following each project and create presentations that will be shared with the community.Community service projects will help students:

  • Apply academic, social, and personal skills to improve the community
  • Make and influence decisions with real results
  • Grow as individuals, gain respect for peers, and increase civic participation
  • Experience success no matter what their academic ability level
  • Gain a deeper understanding of themselves, their community, and society
  • Experience reciprocity
  • Develop as leaders who take initiative, solve problems, work as a team, and demonstrate their abilities while contributing to community development

Wraparound Services

The Academy provides a wide range of wraparound programming to its students through the Metro Youth YMCA (“MYY”). MYY strengthens the community through empowering youth and families to reach their maximum potential by setting high standards, providing holistic experiences, and establishing community connections.Common elements of all initiatives include: 1) exposure to a number of positive adult role models, 2) opportunities to build positive friendships, 3) opportunities to plan, to lead and to articulate points of view, 4) involvement of parents to increase their capacity for self and family development, and 5) delivery of programs through goal and team based activities that foster learning and enhance creative, critical thinking.

The Academy’s wraparound services focus on three core areas: career and college preparation, community service, and academic enrichment. All programs are rooted in the Search Institute’s 40 Developmental Assets. Programs are primarily offered during non-school hours including before and after-school, on the weekends, and during the summer.


The Y Detroit Innovation Academy is a public charter school funded through State School Aid. As an alternative to the Detroit Public School system, parents do not pay tuition for their children to attend our charter school.

Grade Levels Served by DIA

The Y Detroit Innovation Academy educates students in Kindergarten through 7th Grade.

How to Apply for Admission

Y Detroit Innovation Academy is currently accepting applications for Kindergarten through 7th grade.To apply for admission to the YMCA Detroit Innovation Academy, please download an application. Once your application is complete, either:

1. Drop it off at school

Applications can be left at the main office of the Detroit Innovation Academy, located inside New Providence Baptist Church at:

18211 Plymouth Rd.
Detroit, MI 48228

2. Drop it off at your local YMCA

YMCA staff can collect your completed application at the front desk. To find out which YMCA is nearest you, please click here.

3. Mail it to the following address:

New Providence Baptist Church
Attn: Detroit Innovation Academy
18211 Plymouth Rd.
Detroit, MI 48228

4. Fax it to 313-397-8199, our school office

An open lottery process will be used if the number of applicants exceeds capacity.


We are pleased to answer any questions about our school.

School Location

DIA is conveniently located off of the Southfield Freeway (M-39) and Plymouth Rd in Detroit.

DIA Elementary Address

YMCA Detroit Innovation Academy
18211 Plymouth Rd
Detroit, MI 48228
Phone: 313-736-5537

Using the interactive map below, you can scan the nearby area or get directions to the DIA school.

Contact DIA

Questions about DIA?

We are pleased to answer any questions about our school. To contact us, you may fill out the form below and we will respond as quickly as possible.

However, don't hesitate to call us on the phone at 313-736-5537.

* indicates required field

Operations and Saftey

Drill Schedule and Times

Fire Drill Schedule

  • September 22, 2015 held at 2:00 pm.
  • October 1, 2015 held at 9:00 am.
  • November 2, 2015 will be held at 2:00 pm.
  • March 24, 2016 will be held at 2:00 pm.
  • April 29, 2016 will be held at 2:00 pm.

Tornado Drill

  • October 9, 2015 will be held at 1:00 pm.
  • March 4, 2016 will be held at 8:30 am.

Lock-Down Drill

  • September 25, 2015 held at 2:00 pm.
  • November 17, 2015 will be held at 2:00 pm.
  • February 6, 2016 will be at 2:00 pm.