Aspire Public Schools is celebrating 25 years of offering high-quality TK-12 education to communities throughout California. With 36 communitybased schools, including 16 in their Central Valley region of Sacramento, Stockton and Modesto, this nonprofit has brought choice and excellence in education to families previously without options beyond their traditional district-run schools.
Don Shalvey and Reed Hastings spearheaded historical changes in the state legislature to enable a single organization to operate multiple charter schools and, in 1998, launched Aspire to become the first charter management organization (CMO) in California and one of the first in the nation.
“We provide our communities the opportunity for a rigorous, joyful academic experience that cultivates skills, talents and gifts through college-prep courses and excellence in faculty and administration,” says Anthony Solina, executive director of Aspire’s Central Valley region. “Those who can afford private schools have long had educational options, but we bring privateschool-quality education to communities, often in underserved areas, free of charge.”
Aspire’s tuition-free schools are smaller and more intimate than traditional public schools. At about half the size of district-run schools, the ability for school administrators and teachers to know and understand their students and collaborate with parents is far greater. This, combined with challenging college-prep curriculum, leads students to success now and in the future.
“Those who can afford private schools have long had educational options, but we bring private-schoolquality education to communities, often in underserved areas, free of charge.” — Anthony Solina, Executive Director, Aspire Central Valley
Aspire now offers new facilities in Sacramento and Stockton, with openings for new students. Aspire Capitol Heights Academy, TK-8, formerly in Oak Park, now makes its home in a modern, grandly designed building on Folsom Boulevard in Sacramento. In Stockton, Apex Academy, TK-5, and Aspire Stockton Secondary Academy, 6-12, make fresh starts this year in brand-new buildings as part of the revitalized Sierra Vista Housing Authority community.
“We’re proud to offer top-quality educational experiences to the Sacramento and Stockton areas and welcome all to come discover if we’re the solution you’re looking for,” Solina says.