What is the Army and Navy Academy?


Army and Navy Academy is a college-preparatory boarding school for boys, grades 7-12, in Carlsbad, California.

It was founded in 1910.


The Academy was founded by Thomas A. Davis on 23 November 1910. It was originally located in the Pacific Beach neighbourhood of San Diego, California. In 1936, the Academy moved to Carlsbad, California, where it opened as the Davis Military Academy. Davis Military Academy was renamed San Diego Army and Navy Academy, and in 1944 “San Diego” was dropped from the name giving it its present name, Army and Navy Academy. The Academy was most notably led by Colonel (Hon.) William Currier Atkinson, who served as the Academy’s president for fifty years.


Army and Navy Academy is a private military boarding school. The Academy is governed by a Board of Trustees, who are made up of alumni of the school, parents, past parents and interested local business men and women.

Key Personalities

  • Academy’s President.
  • Chief of Staff
  • Commandant of Cadets.
  • Dean of Academics.
  • Assistant Dean of Academics.

The Academy is organised into a Middle School (7-8) and a High School (9-12). The High School has a college preparatory curriculum that follows the University of California A-G requirements for graduation, and all Cadets participate in JROTC leadership courses.

The JROTC programme at Army and Navy Academy consists of four levels of Leadership Education Training (LET) instruction. Cadets earn rank through their performance in LET courses and, when merited, gain promotions within the Corps of Cadets. Top Cadet leadership positions are determined through the Leadership Candidate Course (LCC).

After LCC has ended, a Selection Committee meets to decide who best fits each position. Committee members include the Academy President and Chief of Staff, Commandant, JROTC Instructors, Faculty Leaders, and Academic Counsellors. Leaders are selected not only based on their past performance, but also for their potential for growth.


The Corps of Cadets consists of an army-style Battalion divided into seven companies: Band; Alpha; Bravo; Charlie; Echo; and Headquarters.

Additionally, there are three separate company detachments: The Lower School Honour Guard detachment, consisting of the Stoll’s Guard Drill Team and the Lower School Colour Guard, are officially a part of Echo Company. The Upper School Honour Guard detachment, consisting of Dorman’s Guard and the Upper School Colour Guard is officially a part of Band Company. The school Main Companies include Alpha, Bravo, And Charlie company.


The rank structure at Army and Navy Academy is similar to that of the United States Army. Upon admittance, new Cadets (Plebes) have no rank. New Cadets officially become Cadets after 30 days in residence.

The logical progression for rank and duty positions is as follows (In special cases, where cadets show a high aptitude for leadership, cadets may be advanced at a quicker rate):

ClassDuty PositionRank
FreshmanCadet.Cadet Private to Cadet Sergeant.
SophomoreTeam Leader or Squad Leader.Cadet Sergeant to Cadet Sergeant First Class.
JuniorSquad Leader, Platoon Sergeant, First Sergeant, and Staff NCO.Cadet Staff Sergeant, Cadet Sergeant First Class, Cadet Master Sergeant, and Cadet First Sergeant.
SeniorOfficer.Cadet Second Lieutenant through Cadet Colonel, and Cadet Command Sergeant Major.

Note: In special cases, Juniors who do specifically well in the Officer Candidate Course are permitted to fill-in Senior positions.

In order to achieve Junior duty positions and the rank associated with them, a cadet must successfully complete the Senior Non-Commissioned Officer Course held every year.

In order to achieve Senior duty positions and the rank associated with them, a cadet must successfully complete the Officer Candidate Course (OCC) held every year.

Accreditations and Affiliations

Army and Navy Academy is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) and the California Association of Independent Schools (CAIS).

It is also a member of The Association of Boarding Schools, the Association of Military Colleges and Schools of the United States, and the National Association of Independent Schools.

Clubs and Activities

  • ANA United Club.
  • Aviation Club.
  • Band & Jazz Club.
  • Business Club.
  • Hispanic Heritage Club.

Notable Alumni

  • Robert Beach, 1948, Judge and master swimmer.
  • Carlos Bustamante, 1961, Mayor of Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico.
  • Lauren Bousfield, 1998, Composer and musician.


A former teacher at Army Navy Academy named Jeffrey Barton was accused of molesting some of the boys at the school. A 2015 trial ended in a mistrial, but a retrial in 2017 ended with convictions on a number of charges and a sentence of 48 years in jail.

Army Navy Academy in the late 1990s and early 2000s had alleged issues with hazing, rape, a culture of abuse, and bullying issues.



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