History of Alice Carlson Applied Learning Center


Alice E. Carlson Elementary School was constructed as a four-classroom school in1926.  It was named for Alice Ellinston Carlson, the first woman to serve on the Fort Worth School Board.  A 1934-1935 expansion of the building added two wings, including an auditorium, library, cafeteria, and classrooms.  Much of this work was done by the Works Progress Administration (WPA).  The school was expanded once again in 1952, when another wing of classrooms was added.  In 1983 the school was closed and was used by the Fort Worth ISD as administrative space until 1992.  In the fall of 1992, the school reopened as Alice Carlson Applied Learning Center.

Our Vision

Our vision presents a picture of what our learning community is like and describes our collective future at Carlson.


At Alice Carlson, we incorporate Applied Learning strategies into the best practices of elementary education.  All members of our learning community, including staff, students, parents, and community partners, work and learn together, ensuring that student achievement is high, staff continue to grow professionally, and parents and others continue to be involved as equal partners in supporting teaching and learning.

Our Mission

Our mission at Alice Carlson Applied Learning Center is to educate, empower, and nurture lifelong learners through Applied Learning.


We are united by the following core values:


  • Choice:  We provide choices to encourage students to be accountable for their own learning and discover their voice while respecting others' differences.
  • Rigor:  We challenge all students to engage in meaningful learning opportunities asking them to reflect and self-assess.
  • Authenticity:  We create an environment that promotes problem identification, inquiry, and problem solving to find solutions to real world problems.
  • Community:  We engage in our local community to interact with our world.  We learn to make our world better through empathy, respect, and action.
  • Collaboration:  We guide students to work in teams to encourage thinkers, problem solvers and lifelong learners.

Core Beliefs

  • Foster a sense of community and lifelong learning
  • Teach an understanding of accountability and each person's role in that concept
  • Encourage and facilitate collaboration
  • Provide avenues for students to find their voice
  • Create an environment that promotes problem identification, inquiry and problem solving

Our Students

Alice Carlson enrolls approximately 385 students in grades kindergarten through fifth grade.  As a school of choice, it attracts students from across the district.


Enrollment occurs every February and is open to all children.  Applications are selected according to the process used by all Fort Worth ISD special interest schools.  Though applications are accepted from all interest parents, Carlson's low attrition rate severely limits the number of openings.  Carlson's enrollment process results in a diverse student population composed of children from every major ethnic group, from widely divergent socio-economic backgrounds, and from neighborhoods throughout the Fort Worth School District.

Modified Year-Round Education

Carlson operates on a modified year-round calendar.  The school year is organized into four nine week sessions.