Gilbert Sena, a retired superintendent from Bernalillo Public Schools, recognized that many secondary schools were failing with “our kind of kids." He had seen pockets of success in his international travels, and he desired to replicate such a school by using a charter model.
He invited educators Tina Patel and Tom Crespin to help him. They piloted a credit-re-engagement model at Rio Grande High School and reaffirmed his belief that a small setting with a program aimed at re-engaging families in their child’s education would help serve the many nontraditional students who struggle with traditional educational methods and settings.
Anna Zamora connected with Gilbert while at Rio Grande High School and in 2003 became the first director of the new charter school that would become Sena High. Anna opened the school with a staff of 10 and in July 2004 she opened the doors of the new facility at 69 Hotel Circle, Creative Education Prep Institute 2 (CEPi 2).
In 2007, CEPi underwent administrative changes and began the charter school reauthorization process. Though Gilbert Sena was diagnosed with terminal cancer in 1998 and was not with us to see the school flourish, in 2009, CEPi2 was re-authorized under the New Mexico Public Education Department for a five year term under the new name of our founder, Gilbert L. Sena.