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Expert Education Team Brings New Hope to CAMPA Charter School by Tachelle Shamash Wilkes

“Academic empowerment is the birthright of every child,” is not a mere saying of Collegiate Academy for Mathematics and Personal Awareness (CAMPA), but the driving force that will propel this East New York, Brooklyn school to greatness. Since CAMPA opened its doors in September 2017, it has been showing promise under the direction of principal George E. Leonard, assistant principal Niaka Gaston and their staff who fully comprehends that “every child is born to win.”
“We take students who have less to begin with and give them more of everything we believe makes a difference,” principal Leonard candidly shares. “It is unacceptable to continue to leave a generation of children behind; for in doing so we drag our country down with the economic costs of lost productivity and the societal and financial burdens of poverty, crime, addiction and the other social ills that occur when individuals are marginalized,” Gaston adds.
With a long track record of transforming schools — two in Washington, DC and two in East New York, Brooklyn, Leonard and Gaston knows what it takes to guarantee success. At CAMPA they employ discipline, genuine love for children and families, and a rigorous curriculum coupled with high expectations. 
Of all the competing plans to improve America’s schools, their overall agenda distinguishes itself in terms of its logical potential for fundamentally changing education. CAMPA Charter School is taking the lead. Their current academic trajectory will allow 8th graders (in 2021) to graduate with a minimum of 6 Regents exams (Global History and Geography, United States History and Government, Living Environment, Chemistry, Algebra I and Geometry). There is no other middle school in New York City accomplishing or even attempting such a feat.
CAMPA is already introducing a high school curriculum to their middle school students, while pairing a math-focused academic program with wellness and personal awareness. The goal is to prepare their students in a holistic manner equipping them with the skills necessary to thrive in high school, college and beyond. They also employ a “no excuses” approach to ensuring student success. CAMPA upholds a key principle that traditionally unsuccessful and underserved students can learn at high levels and experience academic and personal success.  
“Our school community believes that public education can still be and must be the great equalizer that allows students born into poverty to lead as successful and productive lives as their counterparts who were born into more comfortable means,” Leonard expresses. 
For more information visit CAMPA at


About Black Westchester (976 Articles)
Black Westchester - News With The Black Point Of View is an online news magazine for people of color for Westchester and the Tri- State area of New York at every economic level. Our mission is to promote the concept of “community” through media.
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