PA CAPE supports and advocates quality nonpublic education for its affiliated schools.

Education Secretary DeVos Meets with CAPE Leaders

On March 20, U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos met with the CAPE board of directors and representatives of the state affiliates for the first time; she reaffirmed her commitment to expanding educational opportunities for children and parents. “We have to stay focused on what’s right for kids,” said Mrs. DeVos, sounding a recurring theme in her young administration. “If we can keep asking ourselves the question about what is right for individual children, I think we’re going to come to a good and reasonable answer.” Mrs. DeVos said one of her priorities was to advance parental choice in education in a significant way that would “help parents and children who are trapped all too often in places that don’t work for them.” But she also said her immediate goals are to successfully steer the implementation of the Every Student Succeeds Act and to get her team of senior officials on board. Beyond that, she wants to advance the public policy conversation about higher education and lifelong learning.

To read more about this meeting with DeVos and to take a look at the meeting CAPE had with House Education Chairwoman Virgina Foxx, take a look at the April edition of CAPE Outlook.

Meeting with Rep. Mike Turzai & other State Representatives

On March 22, 2017, a coalition of private school administrators and the PA Family Institute met with state representatives to thank them for their continued support of EITC/OSTC programs. Meetings were held with sponsors of the legislation, the House Majority leader, the Speaker of the House and others. ACSI PA leaders were able to share first-hand accounts of how this program has made a differnece in the lives of students and families across the Commonwealth. Additionally, pleas were made on behalf of pending proposals for ESAs (Educational Savings Accounts), a program which, if passed, will enable many families to have more of a choice in the education of their children. Finally, we were able to continue the dialogue of reminding our legislators that any new legislation dealing with education in the Commonwealth needs to continue to allow schools with specific mission-statements to continue to both hire employees who support the mission and operate the school according to the mission. These meetings are crucial as nothing has more of an impact on legislators than hearing from their constituents in person. It requires time away from the office, but it is a worthy and necessary investment for the good of school choice and religious liberty.

75 Million EITC Tax Bill Passes House

With a strong bi-partisan vote of 147-39, House Bill 250 cleared its first hurdle: passage in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives. The measure proposes to increase Educational Improvement Tax Credits (EITC) by $50 million (raising it to $175 million) and Opportunity Scholarship Tax Credits (OSTC) by $25 million (raising it to $75 million).

2017 School Choice Champion - Senator Mike Folmer

News | For Immediate Release
January 20, 2017

For more information, contact:
Dr. Merle Skinner, Pennsylvania Council for American Private Education or 724-557-2675

Pennsylvania State Legislator Honored to Celebrate National School Choice Week

LANCASTER (January 20, 2017)– Private School leaders in Pennsylvania honor Pennsylvania Senator Mike Folmer for his support of school choice on Friday, January 29.

Teacher & Administrator Recognition Program!!!

PA CAPE recognizes the value of effective teaching and leadership that promote proficiency in student learning and influences the school with a positive culture. Excellence in both teaching and leadership is worthy of honor, so we have established a program of recognition in the following categories:


  • Educators (3 years through Grade 12)
  • Administrators:

    • Administrators of programs (3 years - Grade 12)
    • Take time to nominate an outstanding teacher and/or school leader, by going to the above referenced link on this page.

      Please Note: Nominations must be made by the last day of February!

PA's 2016 Blue Ribbon Schools

Congratulations to the following PA Schools awarded the 2016 National Blue Ribbon Schools Awards!


Holy Family School — 221 Third Ave, Phoenixville, PA, 19460
St Genevieve School — 1237 Bethlehem Pike, Flourtown, PA, 19031
St Joan of Arc School — 329 W Areba Ave, Hershey, PA, 17033
St Mary Interparochial School — 440 Locust Street, Philadelphia, PA, 19106
St Philip Neri School — 3015 Chestnut St, Lafayette Hill, PA, 19444

2016 Teacher & Administrator Award Winners!

The Pennsylvania affiliate of the Council on American Private Education (PACAPE) is proud to announce the winners of the 2016 PACAPE Private School Teacher, Administrator and School Awards. As the representative of approximately 85 percent of the students in private schools in Pennsylvania, PA-CAPE established the awards ceremony to elevate the status of private education in the eyes of the communities they serve as well as the Pennsylvania legislature. There were many excellent candidates nominated for these awards, all of whom provide an outstanding example of how Pennsylvania Private Schools are changing the lives of students both in and out of the classroom. We would like to recognize and congratulate the following individuals for winning this year’s Teacher/Administrator Awards.

Sister Margaret Rose Adams - Early Education Administrator (Queen of Angels Regional School)
Barbara Williams - Primary Education Administrator (Lehigh Christian Academy)
Mark Stanton - Secondary Education Administrator (Salem Christian School)
Maureen Ludwig - Early Education Teacher (Good Shepherd Catholic School)
Melissa Feilke - Primary Education Teacher (Queen of Angels Regional School)
David Anderson - Secondary Education Teacher (Grace Prep School)
Patricia Eger - Story Award (Keystone Christian Academy)

These teachers and administrators have a personal testimony that reinforces the overall significance of private school educators and leaders; we congratulate and thank them for the impact they make in their classrooms, schools, and in the lives of each of their students.

Award Recipients and PA CAPE Leaders at the awards ceremony in Harrisburg on May 4th.

Front Row (L to R): Marie Conti (American Montessori Society), Barbara Williams, Sister Margaret Rose Adams, Melissa Feilke, Dr. David Hegedus (Association of Christian Schools International), Rabbi Ariel Sadwin (Agudath Israel)

Back Row (L to R): Mark Stanton, George Eger, Patricia Eger, David Anderson, Dr. D. Merle Skinner (PACAPE Coordinator), Sean McAlear (PA Catholic Conference)

Winner missing from photo: Maureen Ludwig

Despite budget fight, an effort focused on students

By N. Aaron Troodler Pennsylvania has long been a pioneer in school choice, providing tax-credit programs that enable tens of thousands of low- and middle-income families to place their children in the most appropriate educational settings. But the state's budget stalemate threw these crucial programs into a dangerous limbo. Ultimately, Gov. Wolf took the necessary steps to free up the $150 million in scholarship funding from Pennsylvania's unique tax-credit programs, which give pre-K-to-12th-grade students the ability to attend the nonpublic schools best suited to their needs and beliefs.

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