(AllHipHop News) Harlem native Sean Combs is teaming with Capital Preparatory Schools for a new charter school in his hometown. The Hip Hop mogul also known as Diddy/Puff Daddy spent five years meeting privately with community leaders and education experts in order to expand the educational opportunities for young men and women in Harlem and build leaders from the community.
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The Capital Preparatory Harlem Charter School will be overseen by educator and Capital Preparatory Schools founder Dr. Steve Perry. Combs has worked closely with Dr. Perry to build community support and enlist a team of educators, parents, and business leaders to bring the idea of the institution to fruition.
"Creating this school is a dream come true for me. I want to impact the lives of young people in my community, and build future leaders. The first step is offering access to a quality education,” says Combs. "Every young person should have the tools they need to succeed. All our children should be able to pursue their dreams. That is something I can impact with this school."
Derek Ferguson, Combs' longtime strategic adviser, will serve as head of the school’s board. The board also includes author and spiritual life coach Dr. Iyanla Vanzant, Mustard Seed Faith Ministry pastor Rev. Georgiette Morgan Thomas, Harlem resident Vince Morgan, Bank of America senior vice president for Community Development Banking Maurice Coleman, and Dr. Perry.
"I’m inspired by Sean Combs’ belief that educating our young people is the key to opening up a world of opportunity for them,” states Dr. Perry. "Sean and I have spent many long hours over the last five years talking about education and how best to meet the needs of the young people of Harlem, and I couldn’t be more pleased to continue this journey through the opening of the school.”
Combs and the school's board selected Orlando educator Danita Jones to serve as principal of Capital Preparatory Harlem Charter School. The school is looking to enlist the most committed teachers from across the country to re-locate to Harlem.
“Every day, we see so many young men and women of Harlem persevere in their quest to become well-educated and engaged citizens. We are thrilled to be part of a growing community that is committed to helping them do so,” adds Chris Watler, Board Chair of the Boys & Girls Club of Harlem. “We appreciate the immense amount of energy put into laying the groundwork for every incredible addition to our neighborhood. Especially those with the sole purpose of preparing Harlem's kids to succeed.”
Capital Preparatory Harlem Charter School will be located at 1 East 104th Street in New York City. The initial school year will begin fall 2016.
The school is currently accepting applications for students in the 6th and 7th grades. Capital Prep Harlem will expand a grade each year until it is fully enrolled at 700 students in grades 6 through 12. Anyone interested in applying as either a student or staff should visit www.capitalprepharlem.org.