Much to Celebrate: An Update from the CEO

Good evening, FAmily,

During our third week of online instruction, many students across our organization took a series of online assessments. While this is the rather unglamorous part of our job, these important assessments give us great insight and information about how our students are progressing in their journey toward college.

For our students, this meant that a number of the pep-rally and spirit week fun activities that normally accompany assessment testing at school were adapted for the online classroom, which resulted in some pretty adorable photos of our students’ entire families joining the school spirit fun.

Here’s just one example of how our scholars’ families showed off their school spirit this week. Pictured here is one of our fifth-grade Intermediate School families representing their “House Ravenclaw pride” during this week’s Harry Potter Cup Challenge. 

For our educators, the completion of these assessments means it’s now time for careful analysis of the results and for the development of lessons that best address our students’ needs. It is a lot of important and impactful work, and anytime we can take a step back and celebrate the accomplishments of those assessments, analysis, and those long evenings of teacher planning, we definitely like to do so.

Even in these uncertain times, there is still so much to celebrate in our school FAmily, and now is a perfect time to do just that.

First, I am very pleased to share that for the seventh consecutive year, our Foundation Collegiate Academy graduating senior class has achieved 100% college acceptance. Congratulations to the Class of 2020!

If that statistic isn’t impressive enough, we also have some school firsts to celebrate, including student acceptances to a number of highly-selective colleges and universities!

Here are just a few examples of the successes our scholars continue to achieve:

  • Jackie Gutierrez has been accepted to NYU and Cornell University.
  • Salvador Xe has been accepted to Cornell University, Lehigh University, George Washington University, and is our first scholar to be accepted to Columbia University
  • Jasmine Cedeno has been accepted to Johns Hopkins University, Boston University, Colgate University, Harvard University, and is our first scholar to apply and be accepted to Georgetown University
  • Jazlynn Ingram has been accepted to Howard University and Hampton University.
  • Kayla McKellar has been accepted to Howard University and North Carolina A&T State University.
  • Rashell DelaCruz is our first scholar to apply and be accepted to Flagler College.
  • Kira Littles is our first scholar to apply and be accepted to Marywood University. 

Congratulations to Jackie, Salvador, Jasmine, Jazlynn, Kayla, Rashell, and Kira, as well as to all of our graduating scholars! We are extremely proud of your achievements.

Acceptances are still trickling in and we will be sure to update you throughout the Spring.

Supporting our Alumni through the crisis
Just as we support our scholars on their way to graduation, we also seek to provide support as they make their way through college.

This health crisis has reminded us all how quickly circumstances can change, and how important the support of a strong family can be when things get tough. That being said, in addition to the scholarships and microgrants already in place, I’m pleased to share that the Friends of Foundation Academy, Inc. has launched an emergency assistance fund to help address immediate, unexpected needs.

Just this week, we delivered necessary laptops to alumni transitioning to virtual learning at home. We are so proud of our alumni for remaining growth-focused during these extraordinary times and are cheering you on! For any alumni experiencing an urgent need or with questions about scholarships, please reach out to

Thanks, everyone, for your feedback and support thus far. I hope everyone is staying safe at home. If you must venture out, please be sure to practice appropriate social distancing and safety measures. And of course, if you need anything, please let us know. We are here to support you.

Have a great weekend, and I look forward to the start of Week 4 of online instruction. 

Yours in community,

Graig Weiss
Foundation Academies

P.S. If you’d like to help support our students as they face the many unforeseen challenges of this crisis, please consider making a donation online today.

P.P.S. Want to get these updates and others like it sent to you directly via email? Join the Foundation Academies Newsletter Email List right here!

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Graig Weiss

Graig Weiss served as the Chief Executive Officer of Foundation Academies from 2014-2022. He began 5 years before as Middle School Principal. A 2003 Teach for America corps member, Mr. Weiss taught Math and Science in the Bronx and the Dominican Republic prior to becoming an administrator and was selected as Teacher of the Year in 2007. Prior to entering the education field, Mr. Weiss worked in the financial services sector with Cambridge Associates, LLC in Boston, MA. He holds a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Science in Finance and Accounting from the University of Pittsburgh, a Master of Science in Teaching from Fordham University, and a Master of Science in Educational Leadership from the University of Scranton.