At the end of each school year, many students around town enjoy field day, an event where math and science take a backseat to outdoor games and fun. While the ritual is a given for local students, the same is not always true for kids living outside of the confines of the North Shore. So on June 12, youth leaders from North Shore Country Day School and New Trier High School gave students from LEARN Excel Charter School in East Garfield Park the same opportunity during the 10th annual Field Day at Fox Meadow Fields in Northfield.
The LEARN Charter School Network functions by creating a network of high-performing, K-8, tuition free public charter schools with an overarching goal for all LEARN students to go to college.
The relationships with LEARN Excel on the North Shore began when a group of altruistic Winnetka parents joined forces to see that the charter school network came to fruition. Their fundraising, commitment and personal involvement led to the development of 11 LEARN campuses in Chicagoland and a specific devotion to the LEARN Excel campus.
“The Winnetka Family Partnership raised significant funds to see the schools get off the ground,” said Susan Snyder, a WFP founder. “But the commitment didn’t end there. Families wanted to give their time by volunteering. We began bringing charter students to the North Shore to enjoy theater, arts, sports, yoga, the Kohl’s Museum and more. Parents and students also started visiting the charter schools, sharing their skills, talents and time.”
Once WFP parents realized the Excel students weren’t fortunate to have their own field day, they sprung into action, inviting them to their very own, North Shore-inspired field day. Overtime, the even turned into a student-led collaboration between NSCDS and New Trier, bringing together more than 70 youth volunteers each year.
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