Dear LEARN Friends and Supporters,
We have reached the end of our second quarter and entered a new year. The past year undoubtedly challenged our strength. This New Year brings me hope and optimism for the future. I am hopeful that the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines will provide our schools and communities with a gradual return to in-person instruction.
Second Quarter of the School Year Concludes
The LEARN model is built on two pillars: strong academic foundation and social-emotional support. I am very pleased with the academic progress made by our students during remote learning. Our scholars have taken ownership of their academic progress and continue to receive social-emotional support daily. Thanks to the hard work of our scholars and their teachers, LEARN’s high quality education continues. Key highlights from the first half of the year:
- 95% daily student attendance
- Over 900,000 meals delivered directly to families’ homes
- 4,000 Chromebooks distributed to every LEARN scholar
- Daily live teaching from educators
- Remote individual and small group counseling
Virtual Activities and Programs
In light of the pandemic, the LEARN Board of Directors challenged our leadership team to creatively bring joy to our scholars by elevating our enrichment programming. Teachers continued to deliver high-quality enrichment instruction, and our leadership team found more opportunities for our scholars. Last month, LEARN Romano Butler partnered with the Chicago Sinfonietta to bring the orchestra to scholars and allow professional musicians to virtually teach scholars about classical music.
Additionally, LEARN 8 Middle School secured a grant with America Scores that gives $100,000 each year for the next five years to expand and explode their extra-curricular offerings. This elevates their already excellent 20+ middle school elective program. These include Spanish, African American History, Video Game Design (Programming), Strategy Games, Step Team and more. This month, LEARN 8 is launching select remote elective classes, including Chess, Cooking and Gaming.
Our scholars are at the heart of everything we do. We are so proud of our alumni success through this difficult year. A few highlights from 2020:
- Courtney James-Atkins, LEARN Romano Butler 2014 alumni, received the Illinois Psychology Leadership Academy Award from the University of Illinois
- Kayla Thomas, LEARN Romano Butler 2013 alumni and first generation college student, is celebrating making the Dean’s list for the last 3 semesters while attending Bradley University
- Tea S., LEARN Romano Butler 2017 alumni and Westinghouse College Prep Senior, has been accepted to six colleges so far, including Xavier and Loyola. We look forward to hearing about more college acceptances as they are received.
- Mariah H., LEARN 6 North Chicago 2017 alumni and Regina Dominican College Preparatory High School Senior, has been accepted into all five schools she applied to: Northern Illinois University, Loyola University, Depaul University, Xavier University, and Miami University in Ohio.
LEARN D.C. Opening in Fall 2021
In partnership with the United States Air Force, LEARN signed a ground lease for LEARN D.C., to be located on Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling (JBAB) in Washington, D.C. We are incredibly thankful to the many people who have been part of this process, especially the families who invited LEARN into the D.C. and Ward 8 community. We look forward to opening our third campus serving military and civilian families.
LEARN seeks an exceptional school leader to serve as LEARN D.C.’s Founding Principal. If you know an outstanding school leader interested in this incredible opportunity, please encourage them to apply here.
LEARN is more than a network of college prep elementary schools. Our families call LEARN schools their “home away from home.” During this pandemic, LEARN continues to serve as a safe and nurturing place for children to grow academically and socially. Thank you for your continued partnership.
Greg White, President & CEO