Esperanza Academy Charter School students continue to excel in proficiency tests, becoming nationally ranked (three years in a row). This year, Esperanza Academy received the bronze medal ranking in the U.S. News Education Rankings for Best High Schools.
Esperanza Academy is unique in that we are successful with students who, on average, do not have high rates of academic achievement. Enrollment is conducted by lottery, and most students come from the low-income neighborhood surrounding our campus. Our student body is 100 percent minority – 94 percent Hispanic and 5 percent African American. The percentage of economically disadvantaged students is 91 percent based on the amount of students who qualify for the free or reduced lunch program. Nineteen percent of all students speak English as a Second Language. Sixteen percent of students have specialized learning needs. Most incoming freshmen come from public middle schools currently in Corrective Action, and the majority of freshmen enter with 5th to 6th grade literacy levels.
But, that is not who are students are.
Our students are resilient and our teachers and staff work diligently not only to educate but also to enrich the lives of every student who walks through those doors. Time and again, we have seen examples of the amazing things our students can do. They are not limited by the implications of their zip code nor by what they see on the nightly news whenever Hunting Park is mentioned. They are not stereotypes nor are they statistics. They are bright and intelligent young adults with all of the potential in the world.
Esperanza Academy student wins the African American Museum’s sharing the Heritage Writing Contest with 3 Masterman students as runner-ups.
Esperanza Academy student wins Penn Law Essay Competition presenting at the Penn Race, Poverty and Change in America: The Persistent Dilemmas of Equity and Equality symposium.
Esperanza Academy student makes potential a reality from starting as an ELL student to reciting Shakespeare in her British Literature class and being in the top 20 students of her senior class.
Esperanza Academy students return to teach at Esperanza Academy and become staff at Esperanza College to give back to the community that had given so much to them.
This is what happens at Esperanza. We don’t just stop at hope; we create lifetime opportunities to make hopes into realities.