Every day in the U.S., 7,000 students drop out of high school. Most of those who drop out of high school were already on that path when they were in middle school. To curtail the dropout rate, most experts agree that students need to be reached when they are in middle school. By the time they get to high school, it’s too late. In response, the Society of the Holy Child founded Hope Partnership for Education, which serves students in fifth through eighth grade.
In a greatly underserved area of North Philadelphia, the Sisters of the Holy Child Jesus and the Sisters of Mercy joined together to open Hope Partnership for Education, a much needed educational center with a middle school for fifth through eighth graders as its anchor.
The educational program at Hope is intense with a longer school day, small classes where personal attention is paramount, and an extended school year, but the results are exciting and the students are flourishing.
Currently, the middle school is housed in rented space in a local community center.
When Kyle first arrived at Hope as a fifth grader, he fought with peers, refused to follow instructions, and was frequently asked to leave the classroom. Due to his unrelenting pattern of disruptive behavior, he was expelled from the school, but was eventually readmitted and given a second chance. Family Connections Counselor Kate Forest worked with Kyle’s mother to ensure he received the counseling services that would help him to improve his coping skills and become more mature.
Kyle’s transformation is music to the ears of his friends at Hope. He is enrolled at the Philadelphia Electrical and Technology Charter High School. A gifted musician, he loves playing the guitar. He also volunteers at the Academy of Natural Sciences.