Mission, Vision & History

Mission Statement

We at Sgt. William H. Carney Memorial Academy are committed to developing a community of learners who are academically proficient, demonstrate strong character and exhibit self-confidence.


The Sgt. William H. Carney Academy learning community creates meaningful learning experiences and opportunities that stimulate creativity and critical thinking while providing a firm foundation in the basics for all students.

School’s Belief

The expectations of our Carney Academy students are to shine like a STAR:
S-Show Kindness
T-Take Responsibility
A-Act Safely
R-Respect Everyone


The Sgt. William H. Carney Memorial Academy, which opened its doors in 1977, is named after New Bedford native William H. Carney.  In 1863, Carney entered the army and was assigned to Company C of the 54th Massachusetts Regiment, the first regiment composed of black men in the state.  During the battle at Fort Wagner on July 18, 1863, Color-Sergeant William H. Carney performed one of the most heroic deeds of the Civil War - earning him the Congressional Medal of Honor for most distinguished gallantry in action. 

The Carney Academy, a Pre-School through Grade 5 elementary school serving a diverse population of approximately 850 students, was founded in 1977 as a magnet school with the goal of racially balancing the neighborhood.  The focus of the magnet school has changed over the years from a theme of communications to our present theme of reaching extraordinary abilities in children through advanced means of teaching and learning (REACH).  The staff at Carney works collaboratively to create a positive and nurturing environment dedicated to maximizing each student’s growth and potential.