Imagine Andrews Public Charter School Opens in Maryland

Prince George’s County, MD – Imagine Andrews Public Charter School (IAPCS) celebrates its grand opening at Joint Base Andrews today, welcoming 240 students in grades K-4 to a temporary 15,000-SF facility provided by AMC East Communities, a public-private partnership between Clark Realty Capital and the Department of the Air Force to redevelop and manage family housing at the base. The innovative new school is the first charter school on a military installation for both Imagine and the Department of the Air Force, and the first to receive significant financial support from a privatized military housing developer. 'Our mission at IAPCS is to create a challenging learning environment for students in the Andrews and surrounding communities, while also addressing the unique needs of military children who oftentimes must cope with the stress of frequent moves and having one or more parents deployed in active warzones' said Pat Crain, Imagine Schools Maryland Regional Director. 'Through creative teaching techniques and specialized curriculum design, Imagine Andrews will provide a rigorous, yet nurturing learning opportunity to prepare students for lives of leadership, accomplishment, and character.' The IAPCS student body will be comprised of children from military families who reside at Joint Base Andrews, as well as students from the surrounding community. All students must be Prince Georges County residents and admission is by lottery. The school plans to expand enrollment to approximately 500 students in grades K-8 within the next five years and move into a 30,000-SF facility in 2012. 'Imagine Andrews Public Charter School provides the Joint Base Andrews community a challenging and innovative learning environment with a keen awareness of the needs of today’s military child,' said Lt. Col. Bridget Gigliotti, 11th Force Support Squadron commander. 'The collaboration among Imagine Schools, Joint Base Andrews, and the Prince George’s County Public School System is a true testament to our commitment to parents, administrators, staff, and all who are involved in the education process. Imagine Andrews affords us a unique opportunity to promote in our students strong moral values, diversity, mutual respect, and responsibility for oneself and one’s community.' The successful launch of IAPCS was made possible in part by AMC East Communities, which is providing a modern, temporary facility at no cost while a larger permanent school is developed to accommodate the school’s stabilized population. The partnership is also providing other forms of subsidy to assure the school’s successful launch, including loan guarantees and no-cost short term funding facilities to assist IAPCS with its initial working capital needs. 'We are proud to be a part of this collaboration to provide both a temporary and permanent home for this exciting new charter school at Joint Base Andrews.' said Sean Callahan, director of Clark Realty Capital. He notes that AMC East Communities is also working to provide support for public schools in the broader Prince George’s County community, having raised $45,000 for the benefit of Frances T. Evans Elementary School and Stephen Decatur Middle School in 2010 with another fundraising event being planned for late 2011 or early 2012." Article published on August 22, 2011 by Education News.