Dunbar Elementary served as a host site for Wells Fargo to celebrate its entry into Atlanta in grand fashion when the bank brought in its legendary stagecoach and horses Tuesday for an event that also celebrated the work of local nonprofits. Select students were allowed to ride in the stagecoach led by its team of four horses, following the ceremony that helped announce the bank’s merger with Wachovia and arrival in the Atlanta market.
Atlanta Community Food Bank
UPDATE: Check out these profiles on Coan Middle School, King Middle, Parkside Elementary, the participating Confucius Institute schools, and the charter schools. Download and share this copy of the flyer!
The second annual APS Neighborhood Celebration will take place between 1 p.m. and 4 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 2, at Maynard H. Jackson High School (801 Glenwood Ave. SE, Atlanta GA, 30316). Part pep rally, part open house, the “All for All, One by One” event will celebrate our neighborhood schools through student performances, a “Parade of Schools,” school displays and a canned food drive benefiting the Atlanta Community Food Bank and Hosea Feed The Hungry & Homeless. (Check out last year’s amazing Neighborhood Celebration!)
Parents, prospective students, Realtors and school, civic and business partners from the southeast Atlanta community are invited to attend to experience what’s happening at their neighborhood APS school. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Come back to this page for continual updates and previews from the participating schools as they give us a sneak peek at what you can expect as we celebrate our southeast Atlanta schools! For example, you can learn about such exciting school program’s as Jackson High’s performing arts offerings (pictured above).
• Maynard H. Jackson High
• Coan Middle
• King Middle
• Atlanta Charter Middle
• Charles R. Drew Charter
• Imagine Wesley International Academy Charter
• Neighborhood Charter
• Intown Academy
• Benteen Elementary
• Burgess-Peterson Academy
• Cook Elementary
• East Lake Elementary
• Parkside Elementary
• Hill-Hope Elementary
• Toomer Elementary
• Whitefoord Elementary
• Tech High
During her visit to Atlanta Public Schools on Friday, famed primatologist Dr. Jane Goodall greeted Jackson Elementary students in English, French, German — and even a little Chimpanzee. Delighted elementary students listened eagerly as Goodall shared her path from animal-loving toddler to world-renowned humanitarian, author and environmentalist.
“As a child, I wanted to live with animals in Africa and write books about them,” Goodall said. “It’s been 50 years since I began that study. That’s half a century, half of a hundred years, wow.”
During that half-century, Goodall and 16 teens devised a Roots & Shoots program that would harness kid power to fuel programs for people, pets and the planet. An idea that began nearly two decades ago has expanded to include thousands of students in nearly 100 countries. The Jackson Roots & Shoots organization began in 2006 when parents Mary Mapes and Liza Purcell approached the school principal, Dr. Lorraine Reich, about a local chapter.
In Julia Darien Durham‘s mind, she’s already a winner. As one of 250 finalists for the 2010 Coca-Cola Scholar program, she is guaranteed $10,000 in college scholarship money. Durham, a senior at North Atlanta High School, learned of her placement Feb. 8. She’ll attend a banquet sponsored by Coca-Cola in Atlanta in late March, when she’ll learn if she’s one of 50 to receive a $20,000 scholarship based on leadership and volunteer work.
“To be chosen as one of 250 out of 70,000 people is already an amazing honor,” said Durham, North Atlanta’s student body president.
Durham was honored for work that includes participation with the Atlanta Community Food Bank, where she became inspired to advocate on hunger issues and attended its Youth Leadership Summit. A passionate believer in education policy, Durham has become actively involved at North Atlanta in tutoring other classmates. “I love seeing the looks on the students’ faces when they get a problem correct,” she said. “That’s when I get the sense that I’ve actually done something, no matter how small it is. If they can get a single math problem, they know they can under something else.”
Durham hopes to major in education policy, whether it’s at the Woodrow Wilson School of Policy and International Affairs at Princeton or any number of other schools to which she’s applied, including the University of Gerogia, Emory, Penn, Harvard or Florida. (She could be forgiven for having a bias toward Georgia; her grandfather, Hugh Durham, was once the Bulldogs’ basketball coach.)
She spoke over the phone with a tinge of embarrassment as she cited one of her inspirations for education policy: North Atlanta High Principal Mark Mygrant (pictured above, with Durham), who was sitting nearby in his office during the interview. “I know it sounds kind of cheesy, but Mr. Mygrant has been an inspiration because he’s been my principal since middle school,” Durham said of Mygrant, who moved from Sutton Middle to North Atlanta during Durham’s sophomore year. “He’s very committed. He walks the hallways. He makes personal connections ith the students. I’ve always felt safe, and that my education was in its best hands while at this school.”
Mygrant has enjoyed following Durham’s progress: “Having her interested in education makes me proud, too. It’s great to see someone with energy and dedication going into education as well.”
Trees Atlanta and community volunteers joined together with students and faculty of Burgess-Peterson Academy to plant 10 fruit and nut trees at the school on Saturday, Jan. 23, in partnership with Georgia Organics and the Atlanta Public Schools‘ Office of Nutrition. The A-Town Dancers from the Atlanta Hawks were on hand to cheer on the planters.
This is Trees Atlanta’s first orchard planting at a public school and is sponsored by the Peachtree Garden Club. The tree planting is in conjunction with the Incredible Edible Fruit Tree, Vine and Berry Bush Sale hosted by Georgia Organics and the Atlanta Community Food Bank. In addition to the tree planting at this learn-and-serve event, information about edible gardening, landscaping and nutrition were offered as volunteers enjoy samples of the fruit from the tree species being planted.
Atlanta Public Schools’ journey to excellence has been undertaken in large part by the schools themselves. With strong leadership, committed teachers, eager students, vigilant parents and enthusiastic community partners, the schools around the district have effectively carried a heavy load in making a difference in our students’ lives.
That’s why APS decided to drive home the point of this success at the neighborhood level; it’s the neighborhoods help create an atmosphere of engagement. And so comes Saturday’s inaugural Neighborhood Celebration, which we hope will be the first of several rallies around the district to show the rest of the city what APS is doing to educated our children. (Download flyer here.)
Nineteen members of the Kennedy Middle School Builders Club spent nearly three hours pulling weeds, collecting organic matter for compost and laying mulch in the 1-acre community garden at Atlanta Good Shepherd Community Church on Thursday morning. (Check out an AJC feature on the garden here.)
The students were greeted by Pastor Richard Bright, who manages the 25-crop garden that includes greens, okra, squash, watermelons, beans, sweet potatoes, garlic and eggplant.
Fred Conrad, coordinator of the Atlanta Community Food Bank (ACFB) Community Gardens project divided students into three teams to work on the project and laying paths of mulch. The ACFB provides gardening expertise, volunteer help, tools and seeds to more than 150 gardens in Atlanta.
This is the second year that Kennedy Middle students have worked with the garden. “We signed a letter of partnership with them because we wanted them to learn,” said Bright. “Last year, we took 12 students to Fort Valley State University to visit their agricultural program, and four students decided that’s where they wanted to go.” The church will take students to visit Tuskegee University and Florida A&M University in the spring of 2010, he said.