Welcome from the Head of School

Welcome to Bradenton Preparatory Academy!

Dear Students and Parents,

Welcome to GEMS Bradenton Preparatory Academy!

We are a mid-sized American international school of 750 students and teachers representing over 75 nationalities. Within this diverse community, there is a strong sense of belonging. Such diversity and academic excellence go hand in hand. Teachers and students from all walks of life learn to take risks together—usually succeeding, and sometimes failing—learning to think differently and respect alternative perspectives. Thanks to close, collaborative relationships between teachers and students, BPA graduates are prepared to be innovative citizen-leaders in their communities around the world.

Our culture of kindness is the foundation on which we all learn and practice respect, responsibility, and leadership. Whether it’s holding doors open for each other, the hearty “Good morning!” you’ll hear as children run into the courtyard each day, the high-fives and handshakes between teachers and students as they leave for the weekend, or the audience sing-alongs at the winter concert, our community’s inherent kindness is palpable.

We believe we are all learners, moving forward together. We believe each student from Pre-kindergarten through 12th grade and every teacher has extraordinary capacity to both learn from and teach others. And, we believe they exceed expectations when appropriately stretched and supported in a nurturing environment. We are constantly innovating, trying to use and manipulate resources in unusual ways to spark joyful learning for all. Students engage with a rigorous curriculum, grounded in the AERO Common Core Plus and Next Generation Science Standards. English is the language of instruction throughout the school, unless you pop into a French, Spanish or Arabic class in which you’ll hear the target language. For our most inquisitive students, we offer Advanced Placement (AP) courses which offer the opportunity to pursue college-level study while still in high school, extended learner programming after school, and interdisciplinary, independent research options.

We know that student success is boosted by a strong parent-school partnership, when communications between home and school are open, trusting, and collaborative. Teachers share video and photos of real-time work in their classrooms with parents and are available at any time to meet; parents connect with teachers daily at drop-off/pick-up or sing in the winter concert with the Glee Club. The very active Bradenton Preparatory Academy Parents Association (BPAPA) promotes events regularly, from Popcorn Tuesdays, Trunk ‘n Treat, and Senior Breakfast, to a great many events throughout the year.

In our palm tree filled courtyard, in our classrooms, in our auditorium and athletic facilities, we all work together to create a joyful school community. You’re encouraged to visit campus to learn more about this wonderful place. You belong at BPA.

Katharine “Kate” Vavpetic

Head of School/CEOGEMS Bradenton Preparatory Academy