Message From Our Executive Director

Davion Headshot

 

A Message from the Executive Director

The City of Atlanta is the birthplace of many greats in the African American community. Several stars have also emerged from East Point, the home of our beloved charter school, The RISE Schools. These include Kenan Thompson, a regular on Saturday Night Live; Andre 3000 from the hip hop duo Outkast; and Tameka “Tiny” Harris, a founding member of the girl group Xscape. While we celebrate our city’s rich contribution to history and culture of our community, we can’t overlook the ongoing disadvantages that our local neighborhoods face, where access to quality schools to educate our children remains limited.

The RISE Schools are a refreshing solution to this dilemma, and I am so proud of the vital and vibrant presence we bring to East Point.  We provide a safe learning environment that nurtures and challenges the developing minds of our scholars to prepare them for a future with opportunity that has no limits. As such, The RISE Schools provide hope and possibility to an once crime-riddled community that previously had none.

The RISE Schools are one-of-a-kind gem, uniquely designed to fulfill a need in the community by providing a holistic education for scholars who might otherwise not have access to this type of rigorous learning environment. We strive for academic excellence, invest in social-emotional growth of our scholars, and infuse social justice practices in our classrooms and curriculum. We have become a stabilizing force for the city and community where our scholars live and learn.

The RISE Schools withstood many challenges of the 2020-2021 academic year! We are eternally grateful for our amazing administrative team and faculty who pivoted swiftly to create effective virtual learning environments for our scholars. Our Parent Coordinator played an essential role in responding to the needs, questions, and concerns of our families. With patience, care, and determination, we rose to the occasion to ensure our scholars received the rich education to which they have become accustomed.

The RISE Schools staff is diligently preparing for the return our scholars to in-person learning in the fall of 2021. Our new strategic plan guides us, with established goals and measurable outcomes. There is palatable excitement about the launching of the new Honors, Arts, and Social Justice programs. We are hiring and training staff in our Special Services Department to effectively support scholars who experience anxiety about re-acclimating to the in-school environment. We are recruiting bilingual staff and educators for our growing Latino population. Additionally, The RISE Schools have partnered with Clark Atlanta University to launch a new Teacher Residency program that provides a pipeline to hire talented and qualified teachers, particularly males, continuing our priority of providing positive male role models for all our scholars.

We are determined that the campus of the RISE Schools will become a gathering place for the East Point community. As such, we are planning activities that celebrate our diversity, foster ethnic pride and community involvement, promote our academic and social programs, and provide authentic community experiences for our scholars and their families.

At The RISE Schools, we embrace the power of holistic education to nourish young minds and develop remarkable leaders who will make great contributions to communities of color and the world. With a RISE education, the sky’s the limit. Welcome to our community!

Davion Lewis, Executive Director                 

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