Is there anything sweeter than the first week of school?
The sights and sounds of Friendship scholars as they return after the summer break always fills my heart with joy.
There’s lots of laughter, epic selfies and a little showing off of new backpacks and the coolest kicks.
Parents, teachers and school staff greet each other with big hugs, refreshed and excited about how they can work together to help our scholars grow.
And because of the tireless efforts of our campus and community office teams, our school environment reflects the high standards we expect of our students.
Shelves are stocked and more materials are on the way. Laptops are humming. Hallways and classroom walls are alive with creative clues that make learning fun and relevant.
Every Friendship school grew and achieved last year. Our intentional approach to mastering the highest academic standards, individualizing learning and augmenting field experiences for our scholars is paying off. So, it was gratifying to start the 2018-19 school year with an article highlighting our “record big gains on [PARCC standardized test] scores.” This news was followed by the Washington Post’s back-to-school story titled “It feels great to go back,” about our students and your work to help them to grow academically and socially.
What a sweet beginning!
At Friendship, we strive to prepare every scholar to own their talents, and use them to transform our world. Within our schools, curiosity, confidence and true grit is nurtured. Students not only discover their talents, they multiply them.
Guided by four powerful principles, we will ensure that every student who walks through our doors can realize their potential.
· Highest performing schools
· Best place to work and learn
· Every student to and through college
· Amplifying student voice
Embrace these principles. Use them to guide your daily work. And remember the words of our Convocation Keynote Speaker Sybrina Fulton, “you never know how powerful you are until you help someone else.” You are powerful beyond measure. Help our scholars discover that they, too, are powerful beyond measure.
Our teachers challenged old ideas, brainstormed new ones and most importantly, deepened their knowledge of the most rigorous standards at Friendship’s Standards University this summer. In the coming months, we will go deeper. We will use what has been proven effective, but with imagination: considering how to stay ahead of the curve and how to prepare our scholars to do the same.
Speaking of staying ahead of the curve, are you excited about our investments in foreign language and arts-education across grade levels? How about our new AP offerings starting in the 9th grade and the multiple opportunities scholars have to earn college credits while in high school? And we couldn’t be more pleased with the Public Charter School Board’s recent approval for Friendship to open the city’s first and only online high school.
This year, let’s aim higher than we ever thought possible. Our scholars will reach for the highest bar we set. How high are we asking them to reach?
I am so proud of what you have and will continue to accomplish.
Let’s make this year our best yet. Friendship Forward!
Friendship Public Charter School