Thousands Gather In Copley Square To Protest Trump’s Immigration Freeze

Iraqi national Khalid Al Mharib, of KIPP Academy Lynn Collegiate, was among the protesters crowding the steps of the Boston Public Library in Copley. Al Mharib says his family moved from Baghdad to the U.S. in 2012 and are now legal permanent residents. But he says he still has family and friends in Iraq and Syria who wish to come to the U.S.

Almharib says he wants Muslim refugees to feel safe in the U.S., and that the action of the Copley protesters is encouraging.

“President Donald Trump’s actions make me feel that I’m in danger,” he said. “And when I came here today to Boston and saw the crowd, this made me feel like really happy and I felt that the country is still in peace and united.”

Read article here.

Writers use poetry and prose in protest of Trump’s election

The “promise of democracy” that Martin Luther King Jr. spoke about in his iconic “I Have a Dream” speech feels very distant today, but not just because of the controversial recent election, Daniel Evans Pritchard told a somber audience at a “counter-inauguration” hosted by a group that called itself Writers Resist.

“The president-elect’s role in this drama is small compared to the forces that put him where he is,” said Pritchard, an organizer of the event, to a packed auditorium in the Boston Public Library. “The forces that today, here, across the globe, we have come together to resist.”

Michelle Garcia, an 18-year-old high school senior at KIPP Academy in Lynn, deftly switched between lines that were humorous and painful, slow and quick, light and deep all at once, in her poem about being “bougie.”

The word, which means acting higher than your class, is never used for white women, she said. Only women of color, like her — and her mother.

Read more here.

Study: Massachusetts Charter Public Schools Have Lower Attrition Rates Than Sending School Districts

BOSTON Pioneer Institute Study – Data from the state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) show that Massachusetts charter public schools have lower attrition rates than the district schools from which their students come, according to a AttritionWhitePaper published by Pioneer Institute.
“These data disprove the false argument that the charter schools only outperform their district counterparts because charters supposedly ‘push out’ students who are less likely to perform well academically and on state tests,” said Dr. Cara Candal, author of “Attrition, Dropout and Student Mobility in District and Charter Schools: A Demographic Report.”  Read AttritionWhitePaper here.
DESE has been tracking attrition since the 2010-11 school year and finds that charter school attrition (the rate at which schools lose students from one year to the next) is dropping and approaching the statewide average. Charters would be expected to have higher attrition rates because they are disproportionately located in urban areas.
Boston charter schools have a lower overall weighted attrition rate than the Boston Public Schools (BPS) and it is also lower for 8 out of 12 grade levels.
Boston charter schools also have a lower dropout rate and higher graduation rate compared to BPS. Charters have a four-year graduation rate of 81 percent and a five-year 91 percent graduation rate. BPS’ four- and five-year graduation rate is 76 percent.
The data show that charter public schools are recruiting increasingly diverse student bodies and helping those students achieve strong outcomes.
In the wake of 2010 state legislation that requires districts to share student addresses with charter public schools and obliges charters to demonstrate efforts to recruit and retain English language learners (ELLs) and students with disabilities, charter public schools have been educating more of those students.
If the current enrollment pattern continues, Boston charter public schools are on track to serve the same percentage of ELLs as BPS. Boston charters are already approaching parity when it comes to students with disabilities, who make up 16 percent of their student population, compared to 19 percent at BPS.
A 2015 study of Boston schools by MIT researcher Elizabeth Setren found that “special needs students are overall similarly or less mobile in charters,” and that special needs students in Boston charters outperform their BPS counterparts. Setren also concluded that attrition is “unlikely” to drive the excellent results Boston charter public schools achieve.
It would be reasonable to expect that charter schools would see decreasing test scores as they educate increasing numbers of ELLs and students with disabilities, but Boston charters continue to outperform BPS.

KIPP Academy Boston Hosts Three Lottery Application Information Sessions for Prospective Families

KIPP Academy Boston will host 3 lottery application information sessions to help prospective families fill out the Boston public charter school common application (published here in 9 languages) on January 10, 19 and February 5, 2017.  Student Ambassadors will be at the information session to  give tours of KIPP for interested families.

Click here @ walk-with-kipp to learn more.