Welcome from Our CEO

Owen Stearns Became CEO of Excel Academy in 2013

Dear Friend,

What began as a small single-site school with one hundred 6th grade students in a strip mall in East Boston has grown into a network that this year alone is educating 1,400 in grades 5 to 12. Our mission remains to prepare students to be successful through their post-secondary paths, apply their learning to solve relevant problems, and engage productively in their communities.

What I am most proud of about Excel is how all of the members of our community come together to support our students. This past year was a powerful illustration of that as our teachers, staff, students, families, donors, and community partners came together to ensure our community held together. Our donors contributed over $200,000 to provide direct support to Excel families. That funding helped provide internet connectivity, access to food, and rent and utility payments. All of this helped Excel teachers and staff continue to provide the best education possible, and our students to be as focused as one can be in the middle of a global pandemic. In short, our community was all in.

Excel Academy is defined not by whom we exclude, but by whom we include in our community. Excel Academy prioritizes an approach that is both rigorous and inclusive. Our students have achieved unprecedented success at the middle and high school levels and have consistently been ranked as top performers in the state based on the percentage of our students who are Meeting or Exceeding Expectations on the MCAS exams. This consistent performance is more than just a statistic — it speaks to the real impact our schools are having on our students’ lives and their communities.

This year, Excel Academy High School was ranked in the top 3% of public high schools nationwide by the US News and World Report. One hundred percent of our students participate in college access programming starting in the 5th grade through the support of our venerable College Access & Post-Secondary Success team. We can proudly sayExcel Academy has a higher retention rate than any other Boston charter public school and our sending districts. On average, 81 percent of our graduates matriculate to college. Compare this with the fact that nationally fewer than 10 percent of students from low-income families are expected to earn bachelor’s degrees and you can see the impact Excel is having on our students’ trajectories.

Next fall, Excel will open its first school in Rhode Island, where over the next nine years it will grow to a full K-12 program to serve over 2,000 students from Providence, North Providence, and Central Falls. We are excited to be able to work with these communities to create a high-quality educational experience and results worth celebrating.

I am continually impressed by the dedication and commitment of our talented staff. It is because of the work they do, every single day, that Excel has a story of impact and potential to tell. I am proud of that story and I hope you will continue to help us tell it into the future.

  • To our families and students: thank you for choosing Excel and for being our community.
  • To our teachers and staff: thank you for going above and beyond every day to ensure each and every one of our students is on a path to future success and fulfillment.
  • To prospective candidates: take a look around and consider joining our team. Excel is a great place to work, full of idealistic, passionate, hard-working educators whose commitment to their craft is unrivaled.
  • To donors and prospective donors: please know how far a gift to Excel Academy will go — we are changing lives here and our track record is unparalleled.

Thank you for your interest in Excel Academy and I hope you will explore our website to learn more about our work.

Owen's First Name Signature3
Owen Stearns
Chief Executive Officer