Civic Builders Opens New York City's First Public Charter School Incubation Space in South Bronx

New York City's First Public Charter School Incubator

Civic Builders has opened New York City's first public charter school incubation space in the Mott Haven neighborhood in the South Bronx. The new school building is located at 411 Wales Avenue and will serve as the permanent home to Neighborhood Charter School: Bronx.

Regarding the exciting project, Civic Builders’ CEO David Umansky said, “While most charter schools typically grow one grade at a time, real estate is rarely expandable. Scaling schools take on more space than they need or can afford in early years. To help solve this challenge, we’ve launched NYC’s first charter school incubator in the South Bronx, where the need is greatest, to offer affordable and pre-built space to new and growing schools.”

Civic Builders’ mission is to ensure real estate is not a barrier to an excellent education, because access to space is one of the top barriers to growth of charter schools. Nearly one in five charter schools delay opening by a year or more due to facilities-related issues. Umansky added, “Only one seat is currently available for every three applicants in the South Bronx. The incubation space is an important tool to launch new schools, which are clearly in high demand here.” 

Civic Builders’ first incubator, named after Jill and Brian Olson for their ongoing commitment to high-quality public charter schools, accounts for 26,000 square feet of the 58,000-square-foot building and will support schools as they grow into their permanent sites. The first school occupying the incubator is The American Dream School, an established middle school adding high school grades. The American Dream School’s permanent home is delayed a year, so the incubator allows the school to continue high school growth without interruption.

While schools rotate through the incubator, Neighborhood Charter School: Bronx will scale grades one year at a time until occupying the full facility, eventually educating 620 students grades K-8. Neighborhood runs a high-performing charter school located in Harlem and is replicating its program in the Bronx, which focuses on educating scholars with autism spectrum disorders. During four years of incubation in the space, Civic Builders will support the launch of three to five schools.

Major funders include Citi’s e for education Campaign, William E. Simon Foundation, and Walton Family Foundation. Investment partners include Chase, NYC Regional Center, The Community Builders, Low Income Investment Fund, Reinvestment Fund, and Nonprofit Finance Fund.

Brian McCappin, Global Head of Institutional FXLM Sales at Citi, said, “The Citi e for education campaign was established to raise awareness and funds for education-focused nonprofits. We're inspired by this wonderful new school space, where generations of students will have access to a high-quality public education.”

Costs for the project totaled $30 million, and the result is a modern facility with 35 bright classrooms, science labs, art rooms, a media center, and a 6,000-square-foot regulation-sized gymnasium.

Media Contact: Amber Roussel, +1 (713) 530-0106

Source: Civic Builders


Categories: Education

Tags: charter school incubator, charter schools, citi e for education campaign, civic builders, education, neighborhood charter schools, new school, new york city, nonprofit, nyc, public schools, south bronx

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We build public charter school buildings for students in neighborhoods where the need is greatest. We are changing lives, revitalizing communities and solving our nation's educational crisis.

Amber Roussel
Amber Roussel
Media Contact, Civic Builders
Civic Builders
180 Varick St (Suite 1414)
New York, NY 10014
United States