1991-92: VISIONING CONFERENCES
Although Nea first opened its doors in 2009, its story began in the early 1990's, when about 1,200 Alameda students, educators, and community members gathered to envision the future of public education. Together, they identified the skills and qualities of their ideal 21st century graduate. Key attendees designed an educational model to cultivate these skills and qualities. They envisioned self-directed, project-based learning in the context of democratic school institutions and a community-oriented culture. This model is still at the heart of Nea's program today.
1996-2008: success to grow on
The first school founded on this vision (Nea's sister school ACLC) served middle and high school learners. By 2007, ACLC was named a California Distinguished School. As demand for enrollment exceeded capacity, several educators at ACLC began to envision a second school that would serve a wider and more diverse population of learners. Central to their vision was adapting the model to the elementary grades and drawing on West African concepts, symbols and metaphors in shaping the culture of the new school.
2009: Nea Opens its doors
Opening its doors in 2009, Nea Community Learning Center started with grades K through 9, and became Alameda's first K-12 charter school over the next three years. From its founding, Nea emphasized the integration of science, technology, art, math and humanities across the curriculum. A central gathering place, known as "The Tree", provides the space for this creativity to thrive. Nea's immediate success and rapid growth confirmed the community's desire for a research-based educational alternative, especially at the elementary school level.
2014: Nea gets a new home
After occupying two temporary sites during its first five years, Nea moved to 1900 3rd Street in 2014 (as did our sister school, Alameda CLC). With the Alameda Boys & Girls Club on site, and the College of Alameda just down the street, Nea learners gained easy access to college classes and affordable aftercare services. In 2018, Nea added three classrooms to the site.
2020: nea pilots modified year-round school schedule
In mid-2020 Nea's staff, learners, families, the Nea Board and the CLCS Board considered and adopted a plan to move to a modified year-round schedule, with a shorter summer break and two three-week intersession breaks in October and February. The modified year-round schedule was adopted for three pilot years (the 20-21, 21-22, and 22-23 school years) and will be reevaluated in 2023.
2022-23: nea expands to offer A Transitional Kindergarten Program
For the initial year (2022-23) the program is open to children turning five between September 2, 2022 and February 2, 2023. Families can apply for Transitional Kindergarten from our "Apply to Nea" page.