Our Story

Our Story

In the spring of 1995, Linda Thistleton read Recovering the Lost Tools of Learning by Douglas Wilson. As she turned the last page over, she thought to herself, "This is what education is supposed to be!" Soon after, Linda's husband Tom read the same book and came to the same conclusion. At that time the Thistletons were homeschooling their two oldest children, but that was about to change.

Just a few month later, Tom Thistleton attended the third annual Association of Classical & Christian Schools (ACCS) conference in Moscow, Idaho. There were 17 schools in the ACCS then (today there are over 200 worldwide). Tom soon became convinced that he and Linda should start a classical and Christian school in Cincinnati. In the fall of 1996, Mars Hill Academy opened its doors on the southeast side of Cincinnati with 27 students and three full-time teachers. 

After relocating to several different temporary facilities due to school growth, MHA moved into our current building in 2006 on a beautiful 13-acre campus in Mason. Over 20 years, Mars Hill Academy has grown into a full K-12 program with over 360 students enrolled and more than 40 loving, dedicated staff members. One of just 37 accredited members of the ACCS nationwide, Mars Hill has graduated 13 classes and has produced many National Merit Finalists, several Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI) spelling bee champions, two state champion girls volleyball teams, and critically acclaimed drama productions. More importantly, MHA has become a school where Christian teachers love their students and their subjects, and where students are equipped to become life-long learners with a desire to love and serve the Lord.

Watch this video to hear more from our founders about how Mars Hill Academy began.

Link to a blog written by our founder, Tom Thistleton, containing items of interest to stimulate Christian spiritual formation and worldview growth.

We invite you to join the MHA family and become part of our story! Contact us for more information or schedule a tour to see the Mars Hill Academy difference for yourself.