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Community Academy of Philadelphia: Learners Today, Leaders Tomorrow

Partner Content
Community Academy of Philadelphia
Courtesy of Community Academy of Philadelphia

Purpose-Driven Education 

Every aspect of Community Academy of Philadelphia (CAP) is dedicated to providing a quality education while keeping in mind the special needs of our students. CAP seeks to empower the diverse young people of Philadelphia through a productive and satisfying school program. In the words of CAP’s CEO, Dr. Alberta P. O’Brien, “For over four decades, CAP has established itself as a place where students receive a full-range of support so they can take control of their futures and be successful. That’s why we are here.” 

CAP is a school with a long legacy of service to Philadelphia. We not only serve families within the community but also generations within those families.  Many CAP graduates return to their Alma Mater when looking for a quality education for their children. They know their children will be supported to reach their personal best because they have experienced firsthand the way CAP provides a supportive, vibrant community.

CAP’s culture is centered around the unifying idea that all students can achieve. CAP is a multi-racial, multi-ethnic, multi-religious, and inclusive family that holds camaraderie and cooperation as essential values. There is an expectation that students will reach high expectations within our sustainable community support system of teachers, staff, parents, and other community members. In the words of the school’s founder, Joseph H. Proietta, spoken to teachers, “You won’t see miracles every day, but stick around, you’ll see miracles.”

Courtesy of Community Academy of Philadelphia

Commitment to Our Mission 

Our mission is to effectively serve urban youth in search of a positive school experience in a supportive environment. CAP is dedicated to the whole child and believes that education is not just acquiring facts and skills but having the emotional and stable capacity to apply them in the real world. CAP is dedicated to offering a quality education while also responding to non-academic student issues that can have a significant impact on academic and overall emotional/social functioning.

CAP believes that attention to the whole child requires an attentive, multi-layered learning style setting. CAP encourages the arts and cultural activities as fundamental to a sound education. Our school challenges each student to explore their personal and academic potential as future adult Americans in an evolving democracy and ever-changing world. In the words of Epictetus, “Only the educated are free.”

Our school holds paramount the needs of our students and challenges the faculty and staff to be creative and nurturing. Our school values personal responsibility. We believe that a trusting, caring and mutually respectful relationship must exist between adults and young people. We affirm that a safe environment, free from violence, abuse, and intimidation is possible within a framework of adult leadership. 

Courtesy of Community Academy of Philadelphia

A Leader in the Charter Movement and Innovation

CAP was among the very first charter schools in the city of Philadelphia and the state of Pennsylvania, leading at the forefront of the charter school movement. Our school has thrived due to innovative practices interwoven with our strong foundational core mission.

Evidence is seen in our experiential education programming. CAP’s elementary students take annual trips for each grade K-8, using Philadelphia and its surrounding area as an extended classroom. CAP’s 6th-grade classes participate in a day-long urban adventure experience through Philadelphia Outward Bound. Our annual middle school promotion trip centers on confidence-building, often involving an outdoor adventure ropes course or other memorable experiences.

Courtesy of Community Academy of Philadelphia

Experiential education is also offered to high school students through the generosity of a private foundation and via a partnership with the North Carolina Outward Bound School offering 14- and 21-day summer experiences in the Blue Ridge Mountains. In addition, CAP’s Experiential Education Class offers a unique opportunity for high-achieving students to immerse themselves in year-long studies of a country abroad that culminates in the experience of visiting that country for a week in the spring. Students have toured the 6 ABC news sets, toured science labs, met with Drexel medical resident students, and placed in the MESA Prosthetic Arm contest. Both CAP’s Volleyball team and Baseball team won their respective Penn-Jersey League championships last year.

We are Middle States Accredited. Throughout the upcoming 2024-25 school year, CAP will proudly celebrate our 45th Anniversary of service to the children and families of Philadelphia.