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Blackstone Academy Charter School is an independent charter public school that is an incorporated, private non-profit 501c3 organization governed by a Board of Directors. 

Our voluntary Board of Directors leads our organization by ensuring that the mission and vision of the organization is carried out. They provide oversight for the school and the SPIRIT Educational Program. The Board  is empowered in ways similar to a school committee. Blackstone Academy Inc. is a local educational authority (LEA) and has no formal affiliation with local school districts. 

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Our Board


  • Melissa Flaherty(President)Community activist, former BACS CIP Instructor, and former School Committee member in North Smithfield

  • Diane Dufresne (Vice President), Director, Pawtucket Prevention Coalition, nurse, substance abuse treatment and research specialist

  • Cristian Giraldo(Secretary), BACS '08, Bryant University, BS, Providence College MBA. Investment Specialist Manulife Investment Management

  • Melissa Montoya (Treasurer), BACS '08, College of the Holy Cross '12, Accountant 

Additional Board Members 

  • Celia Contreras BACS '16 , NYU, BA, Development Associate, Rhode Island School of Design 

  • Sgt. Detective Terrence Green, Providence Police Department

  • Elizabeth Newton, SPIRIT alumni, former Americorps and Perkins Coordinator CF High; Blackstone founding teacher, currently with Epic Decade consulting

  • Tatiana Reis, BACS '15, Rhode Island College, BA, University of Georgia MA, Rhode Island Coalition to End Homelessness, Youth Initiatives Coordinator 

  • Gus Silva, former State Representative, City Councilman and member of the School Committee, Central Falls. Alumni parent 

  • Mena Silva, Administrative staff, City of Central Falls Fire Department and alumni parent.

  • Carlos Tobon, Business owner/community activist

Edward Bishop, Emeritus, retired CEO, EF Bishop Insurance and Real Estate

2023-24 General Board Meeting Schedule

All general meetings are Mondays at  5:30 p.m. They are held in room 201 at the school unless otherwise noted. 


Check RI Secretary of State Site  for Zoom Links, Agendas and Minutes: 

The public is welcome to attend any meeting of the Blackstone Academy Charter School (BACS) Board of Directors or its subcommittees. If communication assistance (readers/ interpreters/captions) or any other accommodations are needed to ensure equal participation, please contact Carolyn Sheehan at (401) 726-1750 x102 at least two (2) business days prior to the meeting.


Any changes in the agenda  will be electronically filed with the RI Secretary of State's website at least forty-eight (48) hours in advance of the meeting. BACS does not discriminate on the basis of race or color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, disability, age, country of ancestral origin, or veteran status in administration of its admissions or educational policies, curricular programs, other school-administered programs, or in its hiring and employment practices in accordance with applicable Federal and Rhode Island laws and regulations.


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Please contact Executive Director Carolyn Sheehan for more details or for Public Information.


Carolyn Sheehan

(401) 726-1750  x 102

Business Manager:

Melissa Cornejo

(401) 726-1750 x 103

We are represented by attorneys at Barton and Gilman

(401) 272-7171 

Follow this link to learn about the Uniform Chart of Accounts:

Blackstone Academy is committed to the education of the whole child. Our Wellness Policy outlines how we comply with federal and State of Rhode Island law and regulations as well as the ways we prioritize wellness in all of our formal and informal learning experiences.  

Consistent with federal, state, and local laws, it is the policy of the Blackstone Academy Charter School, its administration, and its Board of Directors to provide an equal opportunity and safe environment for all students and employees, regardless of race, color, creed, national or ethnic origin, gender, genetic information, gender identification or expression, religion, disability, age, sexual orientation, marital status, citizenship status, or veteran status.

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