KIPP (Knowledge is Power Program) opened its first primary school, KIPP Strive, last year. Located in the West End/Westview neighborhood, and with a current enrollment of 112 students in the initial kindergarten class, this marks the first of three planned primary school openings in the coming years.
Like all KIPP schools, Strive is a tuition free, public charter school serving communities and students regardless of prior academic record, conduct or socioeconomic background. Located on the same campus of KIPP Strive Academy, serving grades 5-8, the opening is only a part of the future plans for students.
Since 2003, with the initial opening of KIPP Ways Academy and the singular Fulton county middle school, KIPP South Fulton Academy, KIPP’s vision has been to provide students an institution that they can progress and develop with a consistent experience and standards from primary through high school.
After receiving state approval from the Atlanta Public School System in December, which gives preference to current KIPP students when applying to KIPP Atlanta Collegiate, the hope it that students will continue on with their education at KIPP. For those entering KIPP Strive Primary it means once they have completed all course work through the 4th grade they can continue on to KIPP Strive Academy from the 5th through 8th grades and then have priority when applying to KIPP Atlanta Collegiate.
“If students want to stay with KIPP K-12 they can do that,” said communication director Jill Joplin.
The commitment made to every child is the understanding that the journey doesn’t end when they leave a KIPP school or receive their diplomas. One of their missions is to not only to get kids to college but through college with the help of the KIPP Through College Program. The comprehensive advocacy and support program for alumni supports students throughout the application and financial aid process, provides homework assistance and tutoring. KIPP has also forged ongoing partnerships with college and universities across the country reserving spaces for qualified KIPP students. In addition, once students are in college they can access KIPP’s database to make connections with fellow KIPP peers at their college and universities.
Enrollment for the 2013-14 school year is now underway. There are no academic requirements needed, but a child must reside within the district of the school. For more information on enrollment, visit kippmetroatlanta.org.
The fundraising event, Are You Smarter Than A KIPPster, will be held April 4, 6-8 p.m. at Buckhead Theatre, 3110 Roswell Road. The event will feature celebrities and community members competing against KIPP students in the ultimate battle of wits. For ticket information, visit this link.