DC Prep Releases 20th Anniversary Report

In celebration of our 20th year of operation, DC Prep is thrilled to announce the release of its 20th Anniversary Report.

DC Prep’s mission is to bridge the educational divide in Washington, DC by increasing the number of students from underserved communities with the academic preparation and personal character to succeed in competitive high schools and colleges. We work hard to honor the faith our students’ families have placed in us to deliver a great education for their Preppies. 

Founded in 2003 as one middle school in Ward 5 with 100 4th and 5th graders, DC Prep has now grown to six campuses across Wards 5, 7, and 8, serving over 2,100 students in PK3-8th grade. Throughout our history, DC Prep has consistently been one of the highest-performing public charter school networks in our nation’s capital, and 100% of our eighth-grade graduates are accepted to college-prep high schools.

“Reaching 20 years is only possible through a strong community,” said Dr. Patrick Clowney, DC Prep parent and Chair of DC Prep’s Board of Directors. “Each of us are stakeholders in the push to provide our children with a life-changing educational experience. The next 20 years rely on us and our ability to remain committed and innovative, even through hardships and challenges.”

DC Prep’s 20-Year Charter Review Approved

In DC Prep’s 20th year of operation, the DC Public Charter School Board (PCSB) unanimously voted to continue DC Prep’s charter for another five years.

Every DC charter school network or single-site charter school must complete the DC PCSB’s charter review process every five years. After 15 years in operation, each school or network is required to submit a renewal application requesting to renew its charter for another 15-year term.

The charter review includes an assessment of:

  1. Fulfillment of charter goals and academic achievement expectations;
  2. Compliance with the school’s charter and applicable laws; and
  3. Fiscal management and economic viability

At the DC PCSB’s January 23, 2023 board meeting, DC Prep presented highlights from the last five years, including how we have responded to the global COVID-19 pandemic. Several DC Prep alumni and parents testified during the Public Comment portion of the meeting, speaking to their positive and impactful experiences as part of the DC Prep community. DC PCSB Board Chair Lea Crusey remarked, “I think others will agree that the testimonies really suggest that this is a network that wants to persist beyond good.”

Thank you to all of our students, families, and staff for choosing DC Prep!  

For more on the DC PCSB’s renewal process, visit https://dcpcsb.org/charter-reviews-and-renewals

DC Prep Named 2022 Cognia School System of Distinction

DC Prep has been named a 2022 Cognia™ School System of Distinction for excellence in education. 

Cognia Schools and School Systems of Distinction are those that “effectively implement high-quality instruction, show consistent organizational effectiveness, maintain a commitment to continuous improvement, and demonstrate energetic and sustained commitment to learners.” This honor is bestowed on less than 10% of schools and school systems across the world that Cognia, a global nonprofit accrediting organization, reviewed in SY2021-22.

In our most recent Accreditation Engagement Review, DC Prep earned an Index of Education Quality (IEQ) score of 387 out of a possible 400 points. The five-year average of institutions in Cognia’s accreditation network is 278-283.

Cognia’s rigorous Accreditation Engagement Review process is based on research-based performance standards and includes a third-party review by education experts of evidence, interviews, and classroom observations. The evaluation covers Leadership Capacity, Learning Capacity, and Resource Capacity, as well as a demonstrated commitment to continuous improvement. 

“DC Prep is to be commended on their recognition as a School System of Distinction,” said Dr. Mark A. Elgart, president and CEO of Cognia. “Cognia Accreditation is already a mark of distinction recognized around the world. Being named a School System of Distinction further recognizes the commitment to education quality DC Prep has for its learners.”

Benning Elementary Campus Named 2022 National Blue Ribbon School

On September 16, U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona announced our Benning Elementary Campus (BEC) as a 2022 National Blue Ribbon School, recognizing BEC as one of the District of Columbia’s exemplary schools. 

The U.S. Department of Education describes National Blue Ribbon Schools as “models of effective school practices for state and district educators and other schools throughout the nation.” Each year, the District may nominate up to three (3) public or non-public schools for consideration to the National Blue Ribbon Schools Program. Nationwide, a maximum of 420 schools are considered each year.

This is the second time DC Prep has been recognized by the National Blue Ribbon School Program; Edgewood Elementary Campus (EEC) received the award in 2013.

To learn more about the U.S. Department of Education’s National Blue Ribbon School Program, visit their website at https://nationalblueribbonschools.ed.gov/

Congratulations to our BEC community for this national recognition!

Newly Renovated Building for Anacostia Middle Campus Opening in Fall 2022

Have you heard? DC Prep’s Anacostia Middle Campus has a permanent home!

DC Prep opened its sixth school, Anacostia Middle Campus (AMC), in the fall of 2020 in a temporary location at 2501 Martin Luther King Jr Avenue, SE. Starting in School Year 2022-23, AMC will be located at 2330 Pomeroy Road, SE. The former home of Wilkinson Elementary School, DC Prep’s renovation will transform the Wilkinson building into a state-of-the-art school for the Anacostia community (in the coming years, Anacostia Elementary Campus will also move to this building so that the elementary and middle campuses will be co-located). DC Prep engaged Shinberg Levinas as architect for the renovation, with MCN Build as general contractor. This architect and contractor team completed the renovation of our Anacostia Elementary Campus at 1409 V Street, SE. 

In the summer of 2021, DC Prep obtained approval from the DC Council and Mayor to enter into a long-term lease for the Wilkinson building, thanks in large part to the advocacy of our families, our supporters, and members of the Fort Stanton Community. In December 2021, the Public Charter School Board approved AMC’s move to the Wilkinson building. A hiring fair was held in Ward 8 in February 2022 to make sure local residents have a fair opportunity to be employed in the construction project. 

The Fort Stanton community is excited to welcome DC Prep into their neighborhood. Click here to take a virtual visit to Fort Stanton and hear from the president of the Fort Stanton Civic Association, the Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner, the project manager of the construction project, and DC Prep Board member and AMC parent, Temica Hunt. 

To view information on SY22-23 Enrollment for Anacostia Middle Campus, please click here.

2022 Accreditation Results

In its most recent accreditation review, DC Prep earned an Index of Education Quality (IEQ) score of 387 out of a possible 400 points. The five-year average of institutions in Cognia’s accreditation network is 278-283.

All DC public charter schools must undergo the accreditation process every five years to remain eligible for operation in the city. The accreditation process is conducted by an independent third-party accreditation organization to evaluate a school or network’s performance against a number of performance standards evaluating leadership, learning, and resource capacity.

Cognia (formerly AdvancED) conducted DC Prep’s accreditation review this year, during which the accreditation team analyzed submitted written evidence and conducted focus groups to interview network leadership, principals, members of the Board of Directors, and a small number of students, families, and teachers. 

The Index of Education Quality (IEQ) is “a holistic measure of overall performance based on a comprehensive set of standards and review criteria.”