St. Paul’s

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About St. Paul’s

The Brookland neighborhood of Washington, DC, has long been a tree-lined community for artists, local university students and families looking to purchase an affordable home. In recent years, home prices have risen quickly as sleek condos and new neighbors moved in. With this change, came a growing need for schools and questions about how to make Brookland a home for everyone.

LIIF financing supported the redevelopment of St. Paul’s College Seminary to create space for two charter schools – Lee Montessori Public Charter School and Washington Leadership Academy Public Charter School (WLA) – and to expand the number of students they serve. This project also preserved office space for nonprofit organizations and will enable a local early childhood education center to expand.

Lee and WLA are both high performing schools that serve an economically and racially diverse student body. Lee Montessori is a diverse-by-design charter elementary school and member of the Diverse Charter Schools Coalition with approximately 40% African American and 45% White students. About 30% of their students are economically disadvantaged.

Decades of research shows that racial and socioeconomic integration is one of the best strategies for a school’s success. Students in diverse schools have higher average test scores and graduation rates than peers with similar backgrounds attending schools with concentrated poverty.

Project Details


Impact
544 new school slots created
30,000 square feet for nonprofit office space
Financing
$4.375 million acquisition and construction loan
Partners
  • Building Hope
  • Capital Impact Partners
  • DC Office of the State Superintendent of Education
  • Reinvestment Fund

For more stories of impact, view our Annual Report >