Archive for February, 2009

Jeb Bush on School Choice: Changing Lives Instantly

Jeb Bush, the former governor of Florida, has written a compelling column about school choice.

“Increasingly, the formula for rising student achievement incorporates four core principles – a commitment to high academic standards for all students, greater access to advanced curricula, data-driven accountability to ensure students are learning a year’s worth of knowledge in a year’s time, incentives and rewards for great teaching – especially for those who tackle our toughest challenges, and choices for parents and students.

While these first four reforms can transform a school system over time, the fifth – school choice – can change the course of a life instantly.”

School Visit in the South Bronx

This week we visited Saints Peter and Paul School on Brook Avenue in the South Bronx. No less than 86 children attend the school with CSF scholarships, and we met quite a few of them during our school tour.

First up, the first-graders performed a tug-of-war in the gym class. Wow, what an enthusiastic bunch! It was close for a while, but ultimately half of the class brought the other half down, followed by much cheering and high-fiving. Next we met 4th graders hard at work in the computer lab. After a stop in the school library, we headed to the cafeteria, where the pre-K class was eating lunch. They performed a poem, “Our World is Bright,” with accompanying actions. Just picture fourteen 4-year-olds reciting the following verse, wiggling their fingers and winking!:

God gives us the stars
That twinkle at night.
They wink at us, too,
And make the sky bright.

Here are some photos.

CSF – Big in Japan?

picture-002Four Japanese government officials (pictured here with CSF President Darla Romfo) visited CSF’s office today as part of a fact-finding trip. They have already toured voucher schools in Milwaukee and discussed school choice in Cleveland. Here at CSF, they were interested in learning about privately-funded scholarships and their impact on the low-income families we serve.

Coincidentally, while we were hosting our Japanese visitors, our new Secretary of State was meeting with the Japanese Prime Minister in Tokyo!

Alexander’s Magnificent Slide

During the 08-09 application period, many families visited the NYC office, and CSF staffers had the pleasure of meeting new parents and students, while also seeing old faces.  On these visits, parents dealt with applications, and the students graced us with their artistic talents.  As families and schools get ready for the 09-10 application process, enjoy this delightful and well-crafted drawing of a magnificent slide. Thank you Alexander!

Alexander's Magnificent Slide

Artist: Alexander, CSF student

Media: Paper and color pencil

Circa: Summer 2008