As part of its annual FedEx Cares Day, FedEx teamed up with the Heart of America Foundation to deliver financial and volunteer support for the FedEx Cares READesign® library makeover at Emma Hutchinson Elementary School, an Atlanta Public School. Hutchinson is the first school in the district to be awarded the Heart of America/FedEx Cares READesign® reading space.
Seventy FedEx employee volunteers completed the finishing touches in the library that included new furniture, colorful reading rugs and paint. They also placed inspirational quotes on the wall and shelved 250 additional library books donated by the company. FedEx also included Spanish books as part of the new collection to serve Hutchinson’s English learning language students. Additionally, 40 Hutchinson teachers received classroom supplies including paper, pencils, pens and organizers.
The Heart of America Foundation also named Hutchinson students Dontrell Price, second grade; Jasmine Nuno, fourth grade; and Jerry Ni, fifth grade, as recipients of The Heroes of the Heart® Award. The award is a national recognition program that identifies inspirational students in schools across the country who have made extraordinary contributions to enrich the lives of others.
Atlanta Public Schools Superintendent Meria J. Carstarphen, Ed.D, thanked the Heart of America Foundation and FedEx Cares for their generous donation and encouraged Hutchinson students to “blow the book cover off reading.”
“Research shows that one positive experience with reading can turn a child into a good reader. If compelling, comprehensible material is available, even the most reluctant reader can develop literacy skills for a lifetime,” said Superintendent Carstarphen. “Your parents, teachers and counselors, as well as bus drivers, cafeteria staff and community partners—all of us can help encourage reading by finding a simple way to have a reading moment every day.”
Through participation in Heart of America’s READesign® program, FedEx encourages students to build a love of reading and to learn more about the world and culture around them. “At FedEx, we recognize that our impact is greater than the services we provide. We are proud that the library books donated today will add to the student’s educational experience. We believe books like these will help prepare students to succeed in today’s global economy and workforce,” said Ted Williams, FedEx Services sales director. With FedEx’s ongoing support, The Heart of America Foundation has distributed more than 7,700 books and created six READesign Reading Corners (library makeovers) throughout the country.
APS vs. DeKalb “Showdown in the Dome” to feature Mays, Carver and Washington high school teams
ATLANTA – Three Atlanta Public Schools football teams will participate in the 2014
APS Domecoming Football Classic Saturday, Sept. 20 at the Georgia Dome.
In its sixth year, the classic will feature the following match ups:
- 12 p.m. – M.L. King Lions @ Carver Panthers (Alumni Night)
- 3 p.m. – Southwest DeKalb Panthers @ Mays Raiders (Alumni Night)
- 6 p.m. – McNair Mustangs @ Booker T. Washington Bulldogs (Homecoming)
Both the New Schools at Carver and Benjamin E. Mays High School will celebrate alumni night during their games.
As part of its homecoming festivities, Booker T. Washington High School will celebrate its 90th anniversary with a parade from the school to the Georgia Dome beginning at 4:30 p.m.
Advance tickets for the 2014 APS Domecoming Football Classic are $12 at participating schools and through Ticketmaster, and $15 at the gate. For more information, call 404-802-5575 or
Fifty Atlanta Public School (APS) sites have been approved to participate in the Bright from the Start Supper Meal Program for the 2014-2015 school year. A collaborative effort between the APS Nutrition Department and the Expanded Day/Special Projects Department, the “Supper on Site” Program provides students with a free afterschool supper while attending their participating school’s traditional afterschool program or athletic activities.
The program started September 15, and students enrolled in traditional afterschool extra-curricular and sports programs at the 50 participating schools receive a nutritious meal after the school day. These activities may include band, football, volleyball, robotics club, yearbook club, dance team, as well as academic programs such as After School All-Stars program and afterschool care. Earlier this month, the program was piloted with 58 students receiving meals at Long Middle School, 300 students at Mays High School and 150 students at Douglass High School. The supper menus range from oven baked cheese pizza with celery, carrot sticks and a ripe banana to slow cooked spaghetti with meat sauce, steamed broccoli and an orange.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) administers the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) at the national level. The program is administered by Bright From The Start Georgia. The Bright From The Start Supper Meal component offers federal funding to afterschool programs that serve supper meals to children in low-income areas. The following 50 APS schools are eligible to offer the supper program based on more than 60 percent of their students qualifying for federal free-and-reduced meals program and the schools administering an after-school activity or program:
- Adamsville Elementary
- Beecher Hills Elementary
- Benteen Elementary
- Bethune Elementary
- Bolton Academy
- Boyd Elementary
- Brown Middle School
- Bunche Middle School
- Carver High School
- Cascade Elementary
- Centennial Academy
- Cleveland Avenue Elementary
- Connally Elementary
- Continental Colony Elementary
- H. Stanton Elementary
- Deerwood Academy
- Dobbs Elementary
- Drew Charter School
- Dunbar Elementary
- L. Stanton Elementary
- Fain Elementary
- Fickett Elementary
- Finch Elementary
- Forrest Hill Academy
- Gideons Elementary
- Harper-Archer Middle School
- Hope-Hill Elementary
- Hutchinson Elementary
- A. Jones Elementary
- Kimberly Elementary
- Long Middle School
- Maynard Jackson High School
- Benjamin E. Mays High School
- Miles Elementary
- Parkside Elementary
- Perkerson Elementary
- Peyton Forest Elementary
- Price Middle School
- Scott Elementary
- Slater Elementary
- South Atlanta High School
- M. Therrell High School
- Toomer Elementary
- Usher Elementary
- Venetian Hills Elementary
- Booker T. Washington High School
- West Manor Elementary
- Whitefoord Elementary
- Woodson Elementary
- Young Middle School
Atlanta Public Schools Superintendent, City of Atlanta Celebrate 10 Years of Cultural Experience Project
Atlanta Public Schools Superintendent Meria J. Carstarphen, Ed.D., joined Camille Russell Love, executive director of the Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs and Atlanta City Council President Ceasar C. Mitchell in celebrating the 10th school year of the Cultural Experience Project (CEP) for APS students during an event at the Rialto Theater Sept. 10.
The Cultural Experience Project offers every Atlanta Public School student, pre-kindergarten through 12th grade an opportunity to visit at least one arts or cultural event in Atlanta every school year. To date, the program has provided more than 300,000 admissions to plays, concerts, dance performances and trips to museums and area attractions.
This year’s Cultural Experience Project sponsors include: Turner Broadcasting Inc., Kendeda Fund, Loridans Foundation, Trammell Foundation, Zeist Foundation, JW Foundation Fund of
The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta, PNC Bank and Macy’s, and representatives from these companies and organizations were in attendance for the celebration.
Dr. Carstaphen, who talked about the research on how the arts impacts student achievement during her remarks, thanked the philanthropic community for their support and told them to “expect to see more fine arts across the school district.” She also recognized APS’ curriculum and instruction staff for coordinating the field trips through the CEP.
“As we enter our tenth year of service, we want to applaud our cultural partners, cheer on our sponsors, and give a rousing ovation to the City of Atlanta and Atlanta Public Schools for their ongoing collaboration” said Love. “We want every APS student to have a quality, cultural experience at one of Atlanta’s premiere venues around the city.”
Dr. Carstarphen later introduced Henry Grady High School senior Nia Nkosi, who gave a student testimonial of how the program impacted her life over the past 10 years. Nkosi has participated in CEP field trips through art classes and playing in the band at Morningside Elementary, chorus class at Inman Middle School and AP art and chorus classes at Grady High. Nkosi, who is a member of the National Honor Society, said she plans to study graphic design, art or computer animation and design after high school.
City Council President Mitchell presented proclamations from the City of Atlanta to Dr. Carstarphen and Ms. Love celebrating 10 years of the Cultural Experience Project exposing cultural field trips for APS students.
After the program, 800 APS students were treated to a performance by Giwayen Mata, an award-winning dance, percussion and vocal ensemble who celebrates the richness of traditional Africa by exhibiting its art forms. In attendance were students from Booker T. Washington High School, Carver School of the Arts, Coretta Scott King Young Women’s Academy High School, Maynard Holbrook Jackson High School, Mays High School, North Atlanta High School, South Atlanta School of Computer Animation and Design, South Atlanta School of Health and Medical Science and Therrell School of Law, Government and Public Policy.
The Cultural Experience Project was launched by the City of Atlanta during the 2005-2006 school year to give every Atlanta Public Schools student from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade the opportunity to experience the city’s premier art and cultural venues at no cost to the student. The project is funded by Atlanta’s philanthropic and fine arts community. The goal of the program is to enrich and expand the lives of students by opening up the world of arts and culture.
Eight Atlanta Public Schools (APS) have been named 2014 Reward Schools by the Georgia Department of Education. Four schools—Charles Drew Charter, Inman Middle, KIPP Strive Academy and West Manor Elementary— are recognized for highest academic performance among all Title I schools. The GaDOE also recognized the following for making the highest academic progress among Title I schools: KIPP VISION, North Atlanta High, Perkerson Elementary and Scott Elementary.
“Congratulations to our students, families and teachers on these campuses. Our dedicated teachers are working to ensure that every student is prepared for the next grade level, the next course, college and careers,” said Dr. Meria J. Carstarphen, superintendent Atlanta Public Schools. “Recognition like this shows that we are continuously moving toward this goal.”
Drew Charter, Inman Middle, KIPP Strive Academy and West Manor Elementary schools are all multiple year winners.
Reward Schools rank among the top schools in the state for having the highest performance or highest gains by students over the last three years. Highest performing reward schools are schools in the top 5 percent of Title I schools in Georgia. Highest progress reward schools are schools ranked in the top 10 percent of Title I schools. Schools were ranked according to their performance in all subjects on the Criterion Referenced Competency Tests, End-of-Course Tests and Georgia Alternative Assessments. High Schools are also ranked using their graduation rate.
Atlanta Public Schools is one of the largest school districts in the state of Georgia, serving approximately 50,000 students across 106 learning sites. The district is organized into nine K-12 clusters with 87 schools, 17 charter schools and two citywide single-gender academies, where students are offered rigorous instructional programs that foster success in school and life. For more information, visit www.atlantapublicschools.us
First Lady Michelle Obama, Secretary Arne Duncan Kick Off Back-To-School Tour with Reach Higher Initiative at Washington H.S.
As part of her Reach Higher initiative, First Lady Michelle Obama joined U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan on his fifth annual “Partners in Progress” Back-to-School Bus Tour with a college fair and “prep rally” at Atlanta Public Schools’ (APS) Booker T. Washington High School September 8.
In remarks given during her Reach Higher prep rally, Mrs. Obama encouraged Washington students to start spending time on college campuses and told them not to be afraid to ask for help. “Neither of my parents graduated from college, so…I was a little overwhelmed..” said the First Lady.
She also stressed that “attendance matters,” a message that resonates with APS Superintendent Meria J. Carstarphen.
“We are excited that First Lady Obama and Secretary Duncan kicked off their education tour in Atlanta,” Dr. Carstarphen said. “It was a powerful moment to have Mrs. Obama remind students of the importance of coming to school every day. She is absolutely right, and that is the primary reason for our APS Day One: Be There. Campaign. Attendance impacts student achievement, and we need students to come to school every day in order to prepare them for college and career success.”
Addressing the students as “Washington Bulldogs,” Mrs. Obama said she chose to visit Washington H.S. because the school is celebrating its 90th anniversary on September 24.
Washington High School opened in 1924 as the first public high school for African-Americans in Georgia. It is the school that Dr. Martin L. King Jr. attended before entering Morehouse College during his junior year of high school.
Mrs. Obama began her visit to Washington High with a tour of a college fair for Washington students with Secretary Duncan. The “Prep Rally” highlighted efforts by Mrs. Obama’s Reach Higher initiative and the Obama Administration to increase access and opportunity for all students. The initiative focuses on the importance of pursuing and completing some form of higher education. It also encourages students to do their part to answer the President’s call to ensure that by the year 2020, America once again has the highest proportion of college graduates in the world.