Preparing Students for Success

Children’s Aid College Prep Charter School (CACPCS) is a Children’s Aid Community School. CACPCS provides students with a rigorous core instructional program supported by expanded learning opportunities and a comprehensive set of student support services. The integration of each of these elements supports the delivery of our whole-child approach.

CACPCS Students

About Us

For children entering their first years of school, Children's Aid College Prep Charter School ensures that they are on the path to college graduation early. The school provides a challenging instructional experience paired with opportunities for enrichment and the comprehensive services children need to succeed in school and life.

Our Vision

The vision of the Children’s Aid College Prep Charter School is to ensure that ALL children have the opportunity to achieve the American dream. By fostering each child’s holistic development early in their academic careers, and by promoting learning and cognitive development, social and emotional skills development, and health and wellness supported by meaningful parent or caregiver engagement, The Children’s Aid College Prep Charter School will put its students on the path to college success. We believe that college graduation will provide our students the best opportunities to live the life of their dreams.

Our Mission

The Children’s Aid College Prep Charter School is a Children’s Aid Society community school whose mission is to prepare elementary school students for success in middle school, high school, college and life by providing them with a rigorous instructional experience; addressing their physical, emotional and social needs; fostering a sense of pride and hope; and serving as a safe and engaging community hub.

Our Framework

We use a research-based comprehensive approach designed to improve student outcomes and foster high academic achievement which underpins our whole child approach to education.

Strategic teachers and professional development

Our school’s professional culture is one of collaborative learning and support which facilitates the development of our teachers’ expertise in strategic instruction as they work together to master new strategies and refine their practice. 

Deeper learning: curriculum and assessment

Our rigorous curriculum is aligned with the Common Core State Standards, and is designed to promote higher-order thinking, content mastery, and transfer of learning. Student data is a central influence on our instructional design. Assessment is intimately woven into the curriculum development process and classroom instruction.  


Co-teaching allows for each class of students to reap the benefits from the additional instructional intensity associated with two highly qualified teachers. The co-teaching model facilitates a greater level of differentiated instruction and small group instruction in a class of heterogeneous learners.

Comprehensive Student Supports

Life Coaching

The goal of Life Coaching is to provide students, staff, and parents with the coordinated and whole-school supports needed to address key barriers to learning. The Life Coach is the central staff member with a set of programmatic prevention, intervention, and enrichment strategies designed to support the holistic development of the students.

Children’s Aid-linked health and mental health services

Through its nearby licensed medical clinic, Children’s Aid provides an array of medical, dental, mental health, health education, and health insurance enrollment supports to CACPCS students and families, regardless of ability to pay. In addition, CACPCS’s new elementary school building will include a medical suite for a nurse and visiting practitioners (e.g., vision and dental screening) while also providing a dedicated space for therapeutic activities.  

Parent engagement and support for families

Our parents deeply engage in supporting their students and one another, and they can access community-based resources just by having a place to come to where they feel safe and supported by CACPCS and Children’s Aid staff.

Expanded Learning Opportunities

Extended day and extended year

CACPCS has a longer school day (7:45 a.m.-4:00 p.m.) and a longer year (185 days) than traditional public schools. This additional time on task leverages the strengths of CACPCS’s rigorous curriculum and supportive instructional model. 

After school, enrichment activities and summer camps and programming

Children’s Aid offers after-school enrichment programming to our students from 4-6 p.m. at the Whitney Young Campus (1919 Prospect Ave.). The aim of these after-school programs is to help our students improve interpersonal communication skills, self-esteem, and teamwork; enhance academic skills; spark intellectual curiosity; and encourage them to explore their interests and expand their worldview.

Our Success

In February 2017, the New York State Board of Regents granted a full five-year renewal of the school’s charter to June 2022. We have worked hard to promote student achievement and have gained the confidence of all stakeholders. Through a rigorous core instructional program supported by expanded learning opportunities and a comprehensive set of student support services,Children’s Aid College Prep Charter School scholars:

Exceeded District, City and NY State averages on the 2015-16 New York State examinations.

Achieved over 95% Average Daily Attendance during the 2015-2016 school year.

Demonstrated substantial growth in their social and emotional skills, meeting or exceeding the National Norms in June 2016.

Our Team

Click here for information on board meetings.

Board of Trustees

  • Michelle DeLong, Board Chair
  • Beth Leventhal, Vice Chair
  • Jane Goldman, Secretary
  • Nina Manon Bershadker, Treasurer
  • Abelardo Fernandez, Trustee
  • De’Lois Coleman, Trustee
  • Phoebe Boyer, Trustee
  • Iris Abrons, Trustee


  • Drema Brown, Head of School
  • Laura Crowley, Academic Dean ( Kindergarten, First Grade, Second Grade, Third Grade, Fourth Grade )
  • Michael Williams, Dean of Students and Culture ( Kindergarten, First Grade, Second Grade, Third Grade, Fourth Grade )
  • Ashley Brown, Dean of Students and Culture ( Fifth Grade, Sixth Grade )


Instructional Staff

  • Justine Brown, Educational Associate ( Kindergarten )
  • John Colantuno, Educational Associate ( Fourth Grade )
  • Jay Concepcion, Lead Teacher - Physical Education
  • Lilly Fashanu, Lead Teacher ( Kindergarten )
  • Issac Fosu, Lead Teacher - Mathematics ( Sixth Grade, Middle School )
  • Cleveland Francis, Educational Associate ( Kindergarten )
  • Andy Gonzalez, Educational Associate ( Second Grade )
  • Todd Hayen, Elementary Music Teacher - Music ( Kindergarten, First Grade, Second Grade, Third Grade, Fourth Grade, Fifth Grade )
  • Melvin Hinds, Lead Teacher - Mathematics ( Fourth Grade )
  • Melissa Isom, Lead Teacher ( Kindergarten )
  • Simone Jackson, Educational Associate ( Third Grade )
  • Jason Johnson, Educational Associate - Science ( Fourth Grade )
  • Daequan Lawrence, Educational Associate ( Fifth Grade )
  • Joanna Ozoria, Lead Teacher - Science ( Fourth Grade, Fifth Grade )
  • Rina Rexha-Sinanaj, Educational Associate ( First Grade )
  • Saron Sisay, Educational Associate - Mathematics ( Fifth Grade )
  • Jacqueline Sullivan, Educational Associate - Mathematics ( Sixth Grade )
  • Judy Tang, Physical Education Teacher - Physical Education
  • Nicole Weisblum, Lead Teacher ( Kindergarten )

Student Support