Education is vital to our children to achieve their dreams and a meaningful life! We know that our educational system today is in great turmoil as we try to figure out the best way that children learn. Our ultimate goal has to be instilling a love of learning that lasts for a lifetime that affects all aspects of our lives.
The School District of Philadelphia identified our local H.R. Edmunds School at 1197 Haworth St. as a “Renaissance School”. By this identification, the School District acknowledges that Edmunds has been one of the lowest performing schools, thus, the School District wants to “bring about a dramatic improvement in student achievement”. 1 There are several organizations that specialize in turning around schools. So, the task becomes finding the right match for H.R. Edmunds. With input from Edmunds’ School Advisory Council, the School District decides which organization will take over management of the school. One of our contributor’s, Lea Pfeiffer, and her daughter, visited the String Theory Schools and presented their opinions about their visit to the School Reform Commission meeting in April, 2012. Lea has shared a copy of her remarks with us and we are sharing some of them with you here. Lea said, “It was what I saw, far more than what I was told, that convinced me String Theory was the best choice. I saw the compassion, respect and love that they have for every child….It was this passion and compassion that convinced me that String Theory will not stop until our students are able to achieve and succeed…” That passion is what makes String Theory Schools believe that they will make a difference at H.R. Edmunds and help every student achieve. The School District announced that String Theory Schools, a Non-for-Profit Education Management company, was awarded the contract to take over Edmunds Elementary.
We have reached out to String Theory Schools and we would like to share with you their vision, in their words, of exciting changes that will be taking place this coming school year. “When the students return from summer recess, they will be walking through the front doors of the new Charter School for the Arts and Sciences at H.R. Edmunds, under the leadership of String Theory Schools, an education management company, whose flagship model is the Philadelphia Performing Arts Charter School. Performing Arts is one of the most successful charter schools in the city of Philadelphia with 11 years of academic excellence.
On June 5th, H.R. Edmunds hosted students from Philadelphia Performing Arts Charter School, who presented excerpts from their spring concert at the Kimmel Center, which included orchestral selections, ballet, and choral music.
String Theory Schools is being recognized locally and nationally for its STEM+ Arts (STEAM) educational model, which encourages the collaboration of the arts (performing, visual, and literary) with the STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics).
The new Charter School for the Arts and Sciences at H.R. Edmunds will feature an engaging, art-infused curriculum with a strong focus on academic excellence. Every student in grades Kindergarten through fifth will be given a violin and taught to play. Each young student will also study ballet, vocal music, and visual arts. Science Lab, French language, and the art of creative writing will also be included in the curriculum. In grades sixth through eighth, students have the opportunity to choose to major in either academic or arts subjects. Students will spend 90 minutes each morning on their selected major. Majors include: Creative Writing, Innovations in Science, French, Ballet, Instrumental Music, Vocal Music, and Visual Arts.” 2
All current Edmunds’ families must enroll their children (including incoming Kindergarten children) to attend the Charter School for the Arts and Sciences at H.R. Edmunds in September, 2012. Packets were sent home with all currently enrolled students. Please see the flyer below for more information!
We wish all involved in this effort much success in the coming year!