Jeremy Chiappetta, former Chief Executive Officer and Superintendent
Cumberland, Rhode Island

Blackstone Valley Prep (BVP)

Preparing for Success
“We are an intentionally diverse public charter school with a mission to prepare every scholar for success in college and the world beyond.” Compelled by its inclusive mission, bold ideas, and high expectations for its students, Jeremy Chiappetta joined Blackstone Valley Prep as Chief Executive Officer and Superintendent. Serving numerous communities that are predominantly working class and immigrant, BVP prepares its students, many of whom are first generation college-bound, for a choice-filled life.

A Partner in Construction
“We started in a local church building and so very early on the real estate challenge to growth was real.” In need of a partner whose real estate expertise would address this obstacle, Blackstone Valley Prep connected with Civic Builders. Through this partnership, BVP has been able to finance, construct and renovate three separate school buildings, serving more than 1,000 students in total. “Civic is not a vendor, Civic is a partner. When we have questions, they’re quick and eager to respond. They have been incredibly thoughtful and responsive as we have navigated various challenges.” With each building, Civic has enabled BVP to fully execute its vision. “Civic brings the expertise of tying aspirations to budget and construction realities and still maximizing the learning opportunities for kids.”

Financial Stability
Most recently, Civic supported the development of BVP’s new middle school. “Civic were end to end experts – from site identification through commissioning, from preparation for startup financing through lease agreements.” The new building includes two science labs, a maker space, as well as art and kiln rooms. BVP was also able to take advantage of Civic’s purchase option, meaning they were able to buy the building significantly below the cost of development. This opportunity saved them a total of $2.45 million and enabled them to redirect resources to further support for their students. “There is a dramatically positive element of knowing you have the long-term certainty to execute your mission and the financial flexibility that comes with ownership. It allows us to save money and reinvest in ways that ultimately will allow more kids to thrive.”

A Shared Mission
Throughout navigating each challenge, Blackstone Valley Prep has been supported by their partnership with Civic, even beyond the completion of construction. Through Civic, BVP has become aware of and connected to a national network of educators and leaders to gain new perspectives and build relationships. For Jeremy, what differentiates Civic from other real estate professionals is the alignment of mission. “Their mission is their bottom line and that’s something that makes Civic special. You know when you’re working with a partner with shared values, you’re ultimately set up for success.”

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