Educational Institutions

Friends of Excel Academy Inc.

  • East Boston, MA
  • www.excelacademy.org

Mission Statement

The mission of Excel Academy is to prepare students to succeed in high school and college, apply their learning to solve relevant problems, and engage productively in their communities.

Main Programs

  1. Graduate Services & Post Secondary Support
  2. Growth Capital
Service Areas

Self-reported

Massachusetts

Excel Academy Charter Schools is a network of high-performing, tuition-free public schools serving students from Boston and Chelsea. Excel currently operates three middle schools: Excel Academy East Boston (founded 2003) Excel Academy Chelsea (2011), and Excel Academy Orient Heights (2012). At full enrollment as of 2015, each school will serves 224 students in grades 5-8. In fall of 2015, Excel Academy launched Excel Academy Charter High School with its first 9th grade class. The school will be fully enrolled in 2019.

As a regional charter school, students from outside of Boston proper and Chelsea are also eligible to attend Excel, although a majority of students are from East Boston and Chelsea.

ruling year

2004

Chief Executive Officer since 2013

Self-reported

Mr. Owen Stearns

Keywords

Self-reported

Excel, Excel Academies, Excel Academy Public Charter Schools, Excel Academy Charter School, Excel Academy, Excel Academy Charter Schools

Sign in or create an account to view Form(s) 990 for 2015, 2014 and 2013.
Register now

Also Known As

Excel Academy Charter Schools

EIN

30-0211613

Physical Address

58 Moore Street

East Boston, 02127

Contact

Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Educational Services and Schools - Other (B90)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Programs + Results

How does this organization make a difference?

Overview

Self-reported by organization

Excel Academy is a growing network of high-performing tuition-free public charter schools in East Boston and Chelsea dedicated to educating traditionally underserved youth in these neighborhoods and providing them with the knowledge, strength of character, intellectual curiosity, and grit necessary to succeed in high school, college, and beyond. We are proud of our many accomplishments that help us prepare our students for college and beyond.

Accomplishments
1) From seven consecutive years, from 2008-2014, Excel Academy East Boston was among the top five public middle schools in Massachusetts, based on our students' performance on the 8th grade MCAS exams. Five of those seven years our 8th graders were number one out of 450+ middle schools in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
2) Excel now operates three fully-enrolled 5-8 middle schools, each with 224 students: Excel Academy East Boston (founded 2003), Excel Academy Chelsea (founded 2011), and Excel Academy Orient Heights (founded 2012).
3) In fall 2015, Excel Academy opened its first college-preparatory high school, Excel Academy Charter High School. Upon matriculation at 5th grade or an upper grade, all students are guaranteed a seat at Excel through high school graduation. Excel's new high school building will open in East Boston in 2016.
4) In addition to success in our schools, Excel's graduates are succeeding in high school and in college. Thanks to the tremendous support of our 5-person Graduate Services Department, 65 percent of Excel Academy's college-age alumni are currently on track to earn a 2- or 4-year college degree. Nationally, only 8 percent of children from low-income families will earn a bachelor's degree within 6 years.
5) Excel has raised $10 million against a $12 million campaign goal since 2013. The multi-year campaign has provided the capital needed to pay for the construction of a new $26 million high school building; has provided the growth capital needed to scale our organization as our schools add new grades annually; and invests in the mission-critical work of our Graduate Services Department.

Programs

Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Program 1

Graduate Services & Post Secondary Support

Excel has built a multi-faceted and all-inclusive Graduate Services and Post Secondary Support Department that provides all students with the supports they need to succeed in both high school and college. Our program leverages the strong relationships we foster with Excel students and families to address the many barriers to higher education. We provide programming that is inclusive, comprehensive and targeted to meet the needs of our Latino, low-income, immigrant youth and their families that is traditionally not readily available to this demographic.

Category

Education, General/Other

Population(s) Served

Poor/Economically Disadvantaged, Indigent, General

Ethnic/Racial Minorities -- General

Budget

$292,251.00

Program 2

Growth Capital

Unrestricted support needed to fund Excel's expansion to three fully-enrolled middle schools and one new high school.

Category

Education

Population(s) Served

Children Only (5 - 14 years)

Ethnic/Racial Minorities -- Other Specified Group

Budget

Charting Impact

Self-reported by organization

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

  1. What is the organization aiming to accomplish?
    Excel Academy exists to provide an alternative educational option for the young people of East Boston and Chelsea, Massachusetts. Too many students in these communities are stuck in failing schools that will not prepare them for college or careers that will ensure they live a vibrant, successful, fulfilling lives. As a public school district, Excel is a tuition-free option for our students and families -- an option that alters the trajectories of the students who matriculate.
  2. What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?
    Excel provides each of its students a rigorous academic curriculum starting in 5th grade that is complemented by significant support to promote character development and positive behaviors. Excel continues to tweak its academic model to ensure we are expecting our students to achieve at the highest academic levels, and now with a new high school we are continuing to push our students to new heights.
  3. What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?
    Excel Academy is a network of public schools. To achieve our mission of preparing our students for high school and college, we operate high-quality, demanding middle and high schools. We are never satisfied and are always seeking new ways of achieving excellence and preparing our students to achieve the ambitious mission first outlined by our founders in 2003.
  4. How will they know if they are making progress?
    There are several metrics that guide our work daily and annually:

    1) Low student attrition rates
    2) High performance on both interim assessments and state exams
    3) Matriculation to Excel Academy Charter High School
    4) High School graduation rates
    5) College matriculation rates
    6) College completion rates
  5. What have and haven't they accomplished so far?
    Excel is proud of its years of success at the middle school level as evidenced by MCAS scores. We are also proud of our work at the high school and college levels that shows our model prepares students for life after middle school when supported by a strong intervention and support model that's provided by our Graduate Services team. However, we are still pushing hard to ensure our students are prepared for life beyond Excel, both in school and out. Our initiatives have helped many students so far in their pursuit of a postsecondary credential. As we continue to move forward we expect more students to succeed, but we will remain vigilant and on top of what works and what doesn't for our students and alumni.
Service Areas

Self-reported

Massachusetts

Excel Academy Charter Schools is a network of high-performing, tuition-free public schools serving students from Boston and Chelsea. Excel currently operates three middle schools: Excel Academy East Boston (founded 2003) Excel Academy Chelsea (2011), and Excel Academy Orient Heights (2012). At full enrollment as of 2015, each school will serves 224 students in grades 5-8. In fall of 2015, Excel Academy launched Excel Academy Charter High School with its first 9th grade class. The school will be fully enrolled in 2019.

As a regional charter school, students from outside of Boston proper and Chelsea are also eligible to attend Excel, although a majority of students are from East Boston and Chelsea.

Social Media

Funding Needs

Excel is currently in the middle of a three-year, $12 million capital campaign to raise money for the following three key areas: 1. Capital Fundraising for New High School Building: $7 million2. Organizational Growth Capital: $3 million 3. Graduate Services Department: $2 million Unfortunately, public funds do not fully support charter schools' capital expenses or allow for scaled growth. Our fundraising needs are focused on these important growth-related priorities. Start-up capital costs associated with opening new schools. Capital expenses related to the purchase of our new high school building. Ongoing operational expenses related to scaled growth at our middle schools and our high school during its early years. Supports Excel's network team that oversees Excel's expansion and centralizes administrative responsibilities

Accreditations

Videos

External Reviews

Source: greatnonprofits.org

The review section is powered by Great Nonprofits

Financials

Financial information is an important part of gauging the short- and long-term health of the organization.

FRIENDS OF EXCEL ACADEMY CHARTER SCHOOLS INC
Fiscal year: Jul 01-Jun 30
Yes, financials were audited by an independent accountant.

NEED MORE INFO ON THIS NONPROFIT?

Free: Gain immediate access to the following:
  • Address, phone, website and contact information
  • Forms 990 for 2015, 2014 and 2013
  • Board Chair and Board Members
  • Access to the GuideStar Community
Get all this now for free
Need the ability to download nonprofit data and more advanced search options? Consider a Premium or Pro Search subscription.

Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Friends of Excel Academy Inc.

Leadership

NEED MORE INFO ON THIS NONPROFIT?

Free: Gain immediate access to the following:
  • Address, phone, website and contact information
  • Forms 990 for 2015, 2014 and 2013
  • Board Chair and Board Members
  • Access to the GuideStar Community
Need the ability to download nonprofit data and more advanced search options? Consider a Premium or Pro Search subscription.

Chief Executive Officer

Mr. Owen Stearns

BIO

Owen is Excel's Chief Executive Officer and served as founding board chair from 2003 until 2008. Prior to joining Excel as CEO, Owen was a strategy consultant for twelve years, working with nonprofit leaders to achieve large-scale social change through innovative strategies, strong organizational design and nimble leadership teams. He comes to Excel directly from the Monitor Institute, where he was an Associate Partner focused largely on educational issues. Prior to Monitor, he was a Senior Consultant with the Foundation Strategy Group (now FSG). He was also an early board member and eventually the Co-Director of The City School, which develops young leaders from public, private and parochial schools through a service-learning curriculum. Owen is a graduate of Amherst College. - See more at: http://www.excelacademy.org/about-excel/excel-academy-network-team#sthash.sGVgO25y.dpuf

Governance

BOARD CHAIR

Ms. Mary Elisabeth Swerz

Community Volunteer

Term: July 2012 -

BOARD LEADERSHIP PRACTICES

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section, which enables organizations and donors to transparently share information about essential board leadership practices. Self-reported by organization

Yes

BOARD ORIENTATION & EDUCATION

Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?

No

CEO OVERSIGHT

Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?

Yes

ETHICS & TRANSPARENCY

Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?

Yes

BOARD COMPOSITION

Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?

No

BOARD PERFORMANCE

Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?


ORGANIZATIONAL DEMOGRAPHICS

In order to support nonprofits and gain valuable insight for the sector, GuideStar worked with D5—a five-year initiative to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion in philanthropy—in creating a questionnaire. This section is a voluntary questionnaire that empowers organizations to share information on the demographics of who works in and leads organizations. To protect the identity of individuals, we do not display sexual orientation or disability information for organizations with fewer than 15 staff. Any values displayed in this section are percentages of the total number of individuals in each category (e.g. 20% of all Board members for X organization are female).

Gender
Sexual Orientation

This organization reports that it does not collect this information.

Disability

This organization reports that it does not collect this information.

Diversity Strategies
Yes
We track retention of staff, board, and volunteers across demographic categories
No
We track income levels of staff, senior staff, and board across demographic categories
No
We track the age of staff, senior staff, and board
No
We track the diversity of vendors (e.g., consultants, professional service firms)
Yes
We have a diversity committee in place
No
We have a diversity manager in place
No
We have a diversity plan
No
We use other methods to support diversity