• Advanced Academics Fine Arts Academy at Blackburn

    It is time to start planning for the 2023-24 school year! AAFAA continues to grow, adding a brand new 5th grade class and another group of incoming kindergartners. If you are interested in having your child attend the AAFAA, please select your situation below and complete the accompanying form.

    • Incoming kindergartners, complete this form. We will be accepting up to 66 incoming kindergarten students.
    • Current kindergarten-3rd grade, complete this form. There are limited spots available at each elementary grade level.
    • Current 4th grade students, complete this form. There are approximately 20 open spaces for next year's 5th grade class.
    • Students in kindergarten - 5th grade who are transfering into Forney ISD, complete this form.


    Our Story

    Starting in the 2020-2021 school year, Forney ISD opened the Advanced Academics Fine Arts Academy (AAFAA) at Blackburn Elementary. In spite of the pandemic and having to function in both in-person and virtual environments (with the expected hiccups along the way), our first year was a resounding success!

    In February 2020, select kindergarten & 1st-grade students were invited to apply to the academy based on qualification for GT or advanced academic services. In August of 2020, the academy opened with 132 1st & 2nd-grade students. These students received specialized instruction in fine arts courses, including piano, dance, and theatre. Additionally, students received core academic instruction in an accelerated/compacted environment that is tailored to the young GT/Advanced brain. 

    In the 3 years since, we have expanded the program to include AAFAA classes at all elementary grade levels as well as our first intermediate class at Smith Intermediate in the fall of 2023. As with other districts, students are always moving in and out, which means that some AAFAA classes may not be at full capacity at the end of the school year. To complete the classes for the next school year, students will be invited to apply based on qualification for GT or advanced academic services or performance on academic indicators such as MAP, DRA, NNAT3, and Torrance. If you are interested in having your child considered for placement in the AAFAA, please complete one of the forms at the top of this page.

    The Advanced Academics Fine Arts Academies at Blackburn and Smith will continue to expand middle school in the 2025-26 school year. The exact location will be determined at a later date.

    Watch the video below for an overview of the program. Click here to check out the AAFAA FAQs. Be sure to submit your question if you do not see it in the document.


    If you are a transfer student from out of district and would like to know more, please email Mel Harlan.