Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Welcome Back Supporters!

We are moving ahead and submitting our proposal for a charter school in the north central Massachusetts region to the MA Department of Education.
A4WCCS will be a K through 4 regional charter school for 360 children residing in Fitchburg and area communities/school districts: Fitchburg, Leominster, Lunenburg, Gardner, North Middlesex Regional, Ashburnham-Westminster Regional, Orange, Athol-Royalston Regional, and Winchendon. 

Please read the revised Executive Summary for the school and take the time to complete the on-line Support Petition and Survey.  This information helps us show the Department of Education that the community is behind the school.  

Thank you for all your support!A4WCCS Founding membersConcetta Verge, Jennifer Jones, Jane Kennedy, Kim L'Ecuyer, Josephine Rivers 

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Letter to Families and Supporters

February 19, 2014

Dear families and supporters,

It is with great disappointment to tell you that Academy for the Whole Child was not approved to open in the fall of 2014.  However we have been invited by the Department of Education Commissioner Chester to submit a proposal for school year 2015-2016.  We believe very strongly in giving families another educational choice for their children and do not intend to give up.  With lessons learned we will move ahead and feel very optimistic that we will open our doors in August of 20I5.  

In the meantime, we will keep you posted on our progress.  We hope you will stay with us and consider A4WCCS as a choice again for your child. Because of your support in less than a month and limited access, we were able to pre-enroll more than 90 children, half of our intended first year enrollment for the school!  

We showed the community that families in Fitchburg and surrounding communities are looking for another choice.  Thank you for helping us and we hope you stand by us again!  Please continue to follow us on facebook and our blog.  

A4WCCS Founding team

Jennifer Jones, Connie Verge, Kim L’Ecuyer, Josephine Rivers, Jane Kennedy

“The brick walls are there for a reason. The brick walls are not there to keep us out. The brick walls are there to give us a chance to show how badly we want something. Because the brick walls are there to stop the people who don’t want it badly enough. They’re there to stop the other people.”
― Randy PauschThe Last Lecture

Friday, November 22, 2013

An Unfair Argument - Worcester Telegram Nov. 18, 2013


It's Your Right to Choose

The Fitchburg Public School community and city government have taken extreme measures to come out against the A4WC Charter School and your right to choose an educational option for your child.  First, the City Council approved a resolution against the charter school without informing charter school supporters that this was to take place.  The resolution was railroaded through without any debate of the issues.  Only one City Councilor voted against the resolution.  Next both the Fitchburg Educators and Fitchburg Administrators Associations presented resolutions against the charter school.  The FEA membership pushed through a resolution blocking out some of its membership.  Finally the school committee approved their resolution against the charter.  This is a result of a few zealot opponents on the inside who have deliberately organized a campaign based on fear, intimidation and control.  
The opposition efforts want to take away your right to choose.  Isn’t it your right as a taxpayer to decide what you want for your child? Some have intimidated FPS employees and other city officials who have tried to speak out in support of the charter.  Because of their extreme actions, teachers feel if they write a support letter or sign a petition, their jobs will be in jeopardy.  Now the latest strategy of the opposition is putting fear into surrounding communities claiming that A4WC will take away students and funds from their districts too. 
Let’s be real... none of the surrounding communities are worried about losing a couple of students because they take in many more from the outside with very few students leaving their districts.  Fitchburg, on the other hand has lost more than 1000 children who have left the district since 2002.  2013 data shows that Fitchburg is number 2 in the state with the highest number of students who leave the city to be educated elsewhere!  

It’s clear the district has much to be afraid of… a chronically underperforming district for more than 8 years, a high dropout rate, and low morale among staff.  A recent Gateway Cities report shows that 64% of Fitchburg’s 3rd grade students are performing below proficiency in reading based on 2013 MCAS results.  Our promise at A4WCCS is for every child to become proficient in reading by 3rd grade.  High-quality education for our youngest school age children is fundamental to a student’s long term success.  As one parent stated "My child comes first.  No one has the right to tell me what's best for my child." 

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Remember the Children

Remember that many children and families don't have options because they can't afford tuition to other schools in Fitchburg.  Remember that not all children function well in large class sizes and need a smaller environment to flourish.  Remember that a child's social and emotional health is necessary  for each child to function at his/her best.  Remember that children need different ways to express themselves and daily arts are part a complete education.  A sense of caring and belonging is what every child will experience when they walk through our doors.  Academy for the Whole Child is focused on the child.. that's what we are about. 


Monday, April 29, 2013

Welcome to Academy for the Whole Child Charter School project!

As concerned educators, with a combined total of more than 140 years in the field, we believe strongly that there is an urgent need to provide new and innovative quality educational opportunities for our most vulnerable populations in the North Central Massachusetts region. To that end, we are in the planning stages of creating a unique charter school, Academy for the Whole Child, for preschool and kindergarten children through grade 4.
Imagine this… a warm and nurturing school community that fosters kindness, self-confidence, self-knowledge, social responsibility with the needs of the whole child at the core. It will be a school that encourages academic excellence, respects the pace of childhood, and seeks  to instill curiosity, creativity, and a lifelong love of learning.
We believe that a small school is better equipped to meet the individual needs of students and their families by maintaining small class sizes where each child is recognized as a person and as a learner. Essential to our philosophy is creating a strong partnership between school and family.
We invite you to join us in this exciting endeavor. 

If you are interested in what we are doing, please participate in this blog or email: a4wcproject@gmail.com