Education * Healthcare * Parenting * Community Engagement  

Ms. Loretta Hart with the Gentlemen's Club at Mary Ford.
Greetings Friend of Charleston Promise Neighborhood!  

February is the month of love!   CPN showed our love for our teachers and administrators this month by providing a Coffee Cabana -- a coffee truck -- at each school one morning during some of the coldest days of the year. By engaging a Neighborhood entrepreneur to take care of the teachers in our schools, we are linking valuable assets in our community.

Another way love was shared in the Neighborhood this month, was by The Gentlemen's Club at Mary Ford Elementary. The Gentlemen's Club is comprised of a group of 5th grade males, and led by Eric Jackson, a CPN Board Member and CEO of R3, Inc. (an afterschool program).  Since the program's launch in December, The Gentlemen's Club's focus has been on youth leadership development, self-discovery, and etiquette.  For Valentine's Day, the "Gentlemen" displayed their love for Ms. Lorretta Hart, Primary Grade Academy master reading teacher and ELT Site Coordinator at Mary Ford , by presenting her Valentine's roses, showing their appreciation for all she does--everyday--to make learning fun and meaningful!

As we transition from the "Month of Love", we are supporting our schools this spring through initiatives that are sure to enhance academic acceleration.  Later this week, CPN will partner with The Charleston Museum and Historic Charleston Foundation to host our 3rd annual Social Studies Bowl!  On Thursday, March 3rd, teams of 2nd through 5th graders from Chicora, James Simons, Mary Ford and  quiz-bowl-style, demonstrating what they have learned in social studies this school year. 
Please join us at Charleston Museum from 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm to see our students in action!
Mind, Body & Basketball shines spotlight on mental & physical health resources
On February 27th, CPN partnered with the MUSC Presidential Scholars to host "Mind, Body & Basketball," a community gathering and basketball tournament that highlighted mental & physical health resources available in our Neighborhood.  Students participated in basketball tournament play throughout the morning at the Shaw Community Center. Various community partners were on-site for families to receive information on health, wellness, mental health, dental care and family supports. MUSC Presidential Scholars also showcased various career opportunities in the medical field to students in the Neighborhood. Sean Gathers with  Highways Services Inc. delivered a halftime message about the behavior health services and supports available to children, adolescents and adults who are diagnosed with mental health issues. With the stigma that often surrounds the issue of seeking mental health supports, groups like Highways Services are helping families get the support they need in their own homes. Congrats to our students who played well, and many thanks to MUSC Presidential Scholars and the City of Charleston for co-hosting such a fun event!

By: Kelsi Childress, SC Ports Authority volunteer
Reading Partners Pilot at Sanders-Clyde Shows Student Progress
Reading Partners in action!
Great news!  The majority of students participating in our Expanded Learning Time Reading Partners pilot have increased their test scores in reading and language arts this school year.

Since September 2015, 25 students have been tutored by a Reading Partners' volunteers twice a week during our Expanded Learning Time program at Sanders-Clyde. Students were selected based on their need for extra support to help them reach grade-level proficient reading. Based on mid-year test results, 96% increased their abilities in letter recognition, and 84% increased their abilities in areas of phonics, vocabulary and reading comprehension. Kudos to these students for their hard work and progress, and to their Reading Partner volunteers for supporting our talented students! 
February Focus Groups Reveal Insights on Community Health
CCSD School Nurse Focus Group
In February, in partnership with MUSC, CPN conducted three focus groups with faith-based leaders, school nurses, and senior citizens from Rosemont neighborhood, on community health needs in the Charleston Promise Neighborhood.

Faith-based leaders shared their perspectives on top community health needs, which included a recommendation to focus on "upstream" investments, like a grocery stores, supports for neighborhood stabilization and housing, and a renewed effort for communities to grow their own food. These "upstream" supports could help prevent "downstream" poor health outcomes in our Neighborhood.

CCSD school nurses cited the need  to offer more supports at schools (including vision exams and glasses, dental care, and immunizations); greater coordination with local physician staff to support CCSD immunization compliance; and better understanding by residents of available community resources. 

Senior citizens from the Rosemont community requested more opportunities to bring health resources to their community, such as offering blood pressure and other vital health screenings, nutrition education, health fairs, and additional programs to support children during the summer.    
Focus Group findings, along with the results  of a community health needs assessment
conducted by MUSC College of Nursing students last fall, will be used by MUSC, CPN and other community stakeholders to plan future health-related initiatives in the Neighborhood.
Inspirational Pathways students visit Redux Contemporary Art studios
2016 Inspirational Pathways Scholars.
On February 25th, Inspirational Pathways scholars from Sanders-Clyde Middle School visited Redux Contemporary Art Gallery, to see artists in action and learn about their work.  Inspirational Pathways originated with the commitment of South Carolina Liberty Fellow Barbara Melvin and Sanders-Clyde patron, Hydrick Services, to decorate the school's hallways with commissioned art work. Hydrick Services' commitment includes the donation of ten works of art over ten years to Sanders-Clyde. I n its second year, the project exposes students to talented South Carolina artists while awakening creativity and raising art awareness for the next generation of leaders.

During the school year, a team of community partners, including staff from CPN and Redux Contemporary Arts Center, work closely with the arts department at Sanders-Clyde to select scholars from the sixth, seventh and eighth grades. The students visit the Redux studios; meet with and interview artists; familiarize themselves with art description, analysis and interpretation; and ultimately introduce the artists to their middle school classmates, who will vote to select the artist who will paint a piece of art to be added to the Sanders-Clyde gallery in May. Stay tuned!  We'd love to have you join the students for the unveiling in a few months!
Redux artist explains technique.
Students get to practice!
Thank you for reading, and we hope to see you on March 3rd at Charleston Museum!

Sherrie Snipes-Williams, CEO
Charleston Promise Neighborhood
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