• "I think the difference between me and some people is that I'm content to do my little bit. Sometimes people think they have to do big things in order to make change. But if each one would light a candle we'd have a tremendous light."

    -Sister Thea Bowman of the Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adoration

About Thea Bowman

  • Thea Bowman Leadership Academy (TBLA) is a tuition-free public charter school located in Gary, Indiana. Our academies focus on providing an outstanding educational experience for grades K-12 on one beautiful campus. Thea Bowman was established by the Drexel Foundation for Educational Excellence in 2003, serving grades K-6. Each year, the next grade level was added until we reached the 12th grade. In 2007, the middle and high school campus was built. In 2020, we integrated the elementary campus into the middle/ high school campus and converted to a K-12 model.

Our Elementary School

    • Leadership Training
    • Annual Parent Summit
    • Parent University
    • Afterschool Tutoring
    • Intervention/Enrichment Block
    • Afterschool activities


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Our Middle/High School

    • Brother Mentor Teacher Mock Trial & Mentoring Program
    • High-Quality Athletic Program including Basketball, Football, Volleyball, Track & Field, Baseball
    • Music, Performing & Visual Arts, and Dance Program
    • 14 Recipients of the newly-created “City of Gary” Scholarships – Partnership between City of Gary and Majestic Star Casinos
    • Home of a Lilly Endowment Scholarship Recipient

The Path to Success Begins at TBLA