Cornerstone Schools of Washington, D.C. began as the shared vision of a small group of Congressional staffers who wanted to do something about the problems they saw with education in Washington, D.C. They met together each week in the basement of the Capitol building to pray and seek God’s will and, after a period of discernment, they decided to open an academically rigorous, Christian elementary school in the city that reflected the diversity of the local community.
They began to raise money and work towards incorporation, but lacked a building. As they continued to search, they learned that Washington Community Fellowship, a church in the Capitol Hill neighborhood they were hoping to invest in, was working towards the same goal. The church had the space to hold a school, but had not yet raised the funds. It was a perfect fit. The two boards came together to open Cornerstone Community School in the fall of 1998! There were 23 students that first year with students in the First, Second, and Third grades.
As the school grew, the board began to explore opening a second campus; a step towards the original vision to have an elementary campus in each of the four quadrants of the city. They learned that Beulah Baptist Church in the Deanwood Heights neighborhood had just completed construction on an annex to their building intended to house a school and had been praying for God to fill it. The new campus, called Cornerstone Beulah Christian Academy, opened in the fall of 2005, serving 95 students in Pre-K through Sixth grade.
After Cornerstone Community School, the original Cornerstone campus, had to find a temporary location for a year after their lease expired, Cornerstone’s two campuses combined into one campus in 2009. This location, the first building designed specifically to house a school, in the heart of Southeast Washington, D.C. has allowed Cornerstone to serve more students than ever and provide such amenities as a playground and a library. Cornerstone added a high school for the 2010-2011 school year and graduated its first senior class in 2013.
As Cornerstone grows, we continue to pursue our goal of operating multiple elementary campuses that feed into a centralized high school campus.