top of page

Success Story: Felicia Rattray

Updated: Jun 21, 2023

"The Road to Success starts first with a walk through the Land of Perception. Your perception of SELF fuels your journey."

"Permission to Succeed" Beginnings

All my life I had a strong desire to make a difference in people's lives. I found myself providing words of encouragement and helping others to see things in a positive light, frequently. I experienced many different careers that led to my discovery of Education being the most fulfilling. So, I began my career as a Social Studies Teacher, an ESE Specialist and then as a School Counselor. While on that journey I often dreamed of having my own school so I could have more of an impact in helping children and helping families. Little did I know that I would be given the beautiful task of raising my then, 8-year-old Autistic nephew, who had lost his mother (my sister) in a fatal car accident, just 9 days after his birth. With this new responsibility came homework, parent-teacher conferences, and a closer look at what a child, with Special Needs, really needed to be successful, not just in school but in life. After overhearing a teacher make a negative comment about my nephew, and the onset of Covid19, I decided to step out on faith and start my own school, primarily for my nephew. He needed a space where he could learn at his pace and receive devoted attention to his needs. He needed a space where he could learn with dignity and not feel ashamed because it took him longer to process information. He needed a space where he could be himself, have fun and learn his way. Thus, Permission to Succeed Academy was born in honor of him and all those who just needed a non-traditional way of doing school. I later changed the structure and name to Permission to Succeed Education Center-now a nonprofit organization.

Model for Instruction

The model of instruction we use is a combination of traditional and non-traditional. It all depends on what each child needs. Our primary method of teaching is Tutor Style teaching to identify mastery of content. Every student is calendared for a meeting and receives one to one teaching. OnDemand tutoring is accessible in the exact moment a child needs assistance with their work. This method ensures students are actually learning content before moving on to the next topic. Our method is structured, consistent, and personalized.

As an Army Veteran, I incorporate the values of my military training into the culture of our school...and we have fun at the same time.

We take advantage of teachable moments, giving students real life lessons to learn from for personal growth. For academics, we draw from a plethora of resources like Edmentum, Imagine Learning, Edgenuity, APEX, Lalilo and more. We have created an a-la-cart system-not a one size fits all system. This way we use what works for each individual.

Advice & Shoutout

My advice to others wanting to start a micro school is to first identify what group of students they want to help and connect with communities such as Microschool Florida and other school owners, such as myself, for support and guidance. The most challenging obstacle in the start-up process is finding a location to operate the school. I will be forever grateful for Laurel Suarez, founder of Compass Outreach and Education Center, for granting me space in her school to get started. Without her assistance, I am not sure if we would even exist right now. Finding a location that was affordable and zoned properly was the biggest challenge for me. So here is a big "Shout Out" and a huge "Thank YOU" to Laurel Suarez. Her guidance and willingness to share her space with me was a game changer.

Favorite Phrase or Motto

There is a favorite phrase that I live by...and it actually came from me and it is:

"The Road to Success starts first with a walk through the Land of Perception. Your perception of SELF fuels your journey." ~Felicia Rattray

The way one perceives themselves determines the decisions they make, the opportunities they take, the roadblocks they overcome or not; but it all starts with perception.

Where to find her

Location: South Florida, Ft. Lauderdale and Port Saint Lucie soon!

If anyone is interested in learning more about us, please fee free to visit our website at: or Felicia Rattray, Master of Science-School Guidance and Counseling Founder/President/Administrator Permission to Succeed Education Center (School No. 9398) 100 SW 9th Avenue, Ste. 1 Fort Lauderdale, FL 33312 Phone: 954-369-4276 & 954-951-0880


LinkedIn Group - Microschool Florida

186 views0 comments


bottom of page