A few weeks ago one of our ninth-grade scholars delivered a welcome address to a group of distinguished guests at Success Academy High School of the Liberal Arts.
As I listened to Briannie talk about her journey to high school, I was moved to tears.
Eight years ago, a small group of us set out to prove that the same children who were floundering in the district’s troubled schools – children like Briannie – could excel in a school with a rich, challenging curriculum and teachers who inspired every child to learn.
When we opened Harlem Success Academy in 2006, I was the principal and Briannie was one of our first-graders. Now Briannie is a young woman on the last leg of her journey to college. She is well-rounded and her confidence is growing every day. Like her classmates, she is thriving at the high school.
Across the Success Academy network, our students at 32 schools are shattering expectations and stereotypes. They are doing it with the help of talented teachers and strong leaders and families who have high hopes for them.
These are the stories that we want to share with you on this blog. We call our blog Mission Possible – after our belief that every child can achieve at the highest levels in a great school.
We call our blog Mission Possible – after our belief that every child can achieve at the highest levels in a great school.
On Mission Possible, we will regularly post stories and insights from our school leaders and teachers. You can learn more about the methods that have helped us reverse the achievement gap. You will see how our scholars are tackling rigorous coursework and finding joy in music, chess, debate, and sports. You will also hear from their parents, our partners in this mission.
We believe that their voices are important in the conversation about education reform in New York City. Our goal is not simply to highlight the extraordinary work that our schools do every day but also to share best practices that can improve education for all children.
Like our book, this blog is a call to action. We encourage readers, including those already familiar with our schools and those who are just discovering Success Academy, to read our blog and share what you learn about great schooling with others around you.