About Us » Message from our Chief Executive Officer

Message from our Chief Executive Officer

Greetings, and welcome to Ad Prima Charter School!

        Thank you for visiting our website. Here, you will learn all about our school, which is especially
important if you are considering sending your children to Ad Prima Charter School. We are so happy that
students who attend our school succeed academically, strengthen their skills for peaceful and constructive
social interactions, and develop their artistic abilities with our help and with the help of their very
supportive families.

        Ad Prima Charter School is a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) non-profit educational organization. We
teach students in Grades K - 8, and our goal is to help our students grow to their fullest potential.
Our school was founded in 2004, receiving its charter to educate the entire child by providing
programs to children that will enable them to become exemplary citizens, distinguishable by their
excellence in academic performance, social mores worthy of emulation, contagious positive attitude,
noticeable high self-esteem, inclination to peaceful conflict resolution, effective communication skills,
and commitment to community, fellowship, and leadership by good example. Since its founding, Ad
Prima Charter School strives to constantly enhance the education and opportunities provided to our
        Ad Prima Charter School is a Title I School with over 90% of our students qualifying for
additional services and free lunch. Nevertheless, through the commitment of our students, teachers, and
families, Ad Prima Charter School is honored to have been named a Blue Ribbon School, to have been
ranked a “Top School” by Great Philly Schools, and to have repeatedly had our accreditation renewed by
the Middle States Association Commissions on Elementary and Secondary Schools (MSA-CESS)
through a stringent process that assesses the quality of our school and helps our school develop seven-
year plans for continual improvement. In 2020, the School District of Philadelphia ranked Ad Prima
Charter School in the top 10% of all Philadelphia public and charter schools for the highest overall School
District Performance Score.

        We hold ourselves to high academic and professional standards. Additionally, we encourage our
students to develop their talents and abilities through the arts during school and through extra-curricular
activities after school. Our Robotics Team has won championships, and our Science, Technology,
Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) program has received top honors. Each Saturday, many of our
students meet for our Musical Theater Workshop, which culminates in an impressive student performance
each spring. Students have formal art exhibits twice a year, and our music teacher directs our students in
musical presentations each semester.

        Perhaps, most importantly, one of our strongest achievements is the high number of our eighth
grade graduates who are admitted into private and magnet high schools each year.  Approximately
seventy-seven percent of our students who apply to private and magnet schools are accepted into and
enjoy great success in these high schools. Many of our alumni and their parents attribute our alumni’s
success to the education that they received at Ad Prima Charter School. In the 2020-2021 school year,
three of our eighth grade students were accepted with full scholarships to St. Paul’s School in New
Hampshire, an elite private college preparation high school, the same one attended by former U.S.
Senator John Kerry (also former United States Secretary of State and, currently, the United States Special
Presidential Envoy for Climate). More of our eighth grade students are likely to be accepted to St. Paul’s
School for the 2023-2024 school year.

         Ad Prima’s Chapter of the National Junior Honor Society reflects our students’ accomplishments
in the areas of academic achievement and in service to the public.  In order to be a member of our chapter,
students must maintain a high grade point average, must consistently practice good citizenship, and must
be recommended by a teacher.  Their many service projects have included: (1) tutoring; (2) organizing
climate change awareness events; (3) organizing canned food drives; (4) organizing drives to collect
books and toys for disadvantaged children; (5) making phone calls to the elderly at nursing facilities to
cheer them up during COVID-19; and, (6) helping to organize and promote various school events, such as
talent shows, poetry events, cooking projects, a challenge to consistently use reusable water bottles to
help the environment, and more. 

         Our Student Council helps students elected to represent their homerooms hone their leadership
skills.  Students express their opinions on a variety of topics, vote, and share the concerns and desires of
the students in their homerooms with the rest of the Student Council representatives and the school

         With regard to meeting our goal of students learning and practicing peaceful conflict resolution,
teachers set the example on a regular basis by helping students in class to mediate any disagreements in a
fair and reasonable way.  The school counselors and deans also assist in this process.  Ad Prima has an
additional counselor who meets with all of our classes on a regular basis to present information on
peaceful conflict resolution, anti-bullying, and mediation. Our regular school counselors and our teachers
reinforce these lessons, often with individual and small group work. 

         At Ad Prima Charter School, we truly believe that all children can reach their academic and
social potential when given the opportunity to learn and to grow in a peaceful, fair, and respectful
environment - where individual differences and similarities among all people are appreciated.  Students in
Grades K – 8 can develop mediation and dispute resolution skills that will enable them to become
productive, contributing members of society and the world-community.  Students can achieve through a
comprehensive curriculum, rich in basics (reading, writing, mathematics, science, and social studies),
with an emphasis on developing critical thinking and problem-solving skills, while also learning and
practicing the vastly important skills of peaceful conflict resolution, constructive communication,
negotiation, and mediation.  When students are challenged to achieve, their self-esteem and self-
confidence increases, and when children have high self-esteem and self-confidence, their chances of
success increase greatly.

          With its focus on academic excellence, character building, and peaceful conflict resolution skills,
Ad Prima Charter School provides its students with the academic and social skills that they need to
succeed in high school and in life.  We are so thankful for our supportive Ad Prima Charter School
community of families! If you are not already part of the Ad Prima community, we hope that you and
your family will consider joining. It is our mission and our pleasure to teach our wonderful students!
                                                                                                   Most sincerely,

                                                                                                  Niya Blackwell, CEO, Esq.