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Frankford High School Culinary Academy

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A few weeks ago the Frankford Business and Professional Association had a meeting at Frankford High and we had lunch courtesy of the Culinary Academy.  I had heard about this part of Frankford before but had not had the up close and personal look see.  The students put on an impressive meal.

This week in the Northeast Times, John Loftus writes about the Academy and the movie that has been making the rounds of the film festivals.  Titled Pressure Cooker, it will open June 12 at the Ritz Bourse theater in Center City.  The film was shot during the 2006-97 school year and was done much like a reality TV show.  It captures the action as the students learn what it takes to work in the restaurant business.

Most impressive was their no nonesense teacher, Wilma Stephenson.

In the movie, Stephenson asks new students if they’ve heard about her. As they raise their hands, she tells them whatever they heard, it’s 500 times worse.

And she get amazing results.   This is a triumph in an urban school.

This year’s graduates have tallied $672,000 in scholarships, Stephenson said. According to the movie’s publicity material, 53 of her students have received more than $3 million in scholarships to attend culinary schools as well as four-year and community colleges.

Watch for the movie when it comes and a DVD is soon to follow.

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Frankford High’s new principal visits Northwood Civic

Ed Koch, the new principal,  also spoke briefly at the Frankford CDC board meeting before going over to St. James.

Plans were in the works for Koch, a 34-year veteran of the School District of Philadelphia, to become principal at the high school.

When he arrived for the visit, he saw students hanging outside.

“I thought they were there to valet park,” he said.

Inside, he saw students roaming the hallways like they were at a mall.

“I thought I was at Macy’s and missed a sale,” he said.

Read the entire story on the Northeast Times.

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Frankford at the Philly Film Fest

From the Allentown Morning Call:

Pressure Cooker: On the menu is a tasty documentary, in the ”Spellbound” tradition, which tracks a handful of Frankford High School students as they compete for scholarships to culinary colleges. Under the guidance of Culinary Arts instructor Wilma Stephenson, the kids learn life lessons at the same time they’re slicing and dicing. Screens 6:30 p.m. March 28, The Prince, 4:45 p.m. March 29, Ritz East 1 and 7:30 p.m. April 4, Black Box at Prince.

See the entire festival schedule and ticket information here.

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Frankford High School

KatieRose Keenan of the Northeast Times again reports on the new principal at Frankford High.

Edward Koch, the newly appointed principal at Frankford High School, knows that to effectively maintain order in any school, you first must be respected by your students.
“As a principal, you don’t have to be loved but you have to be respected. That’s the only way students are going to take you seriously,” explained Koch.

Read the entire story here.