Lola, an 8th grader, and Fabian Austin, Assistant Director of Graduate Services, measure protein mix as the entire school community partners with The Outreach Program to package meals on MLK Day of Service. 
Our School 'Doing Right' on MLK Day of Service
“The time is always right to do what is right.”
– Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

“Doing right” is a regular practice for students and staff at St.James School. Yet our dedication to doing right is perhaps most evident on Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service. This year on January 20, students and a few graduates teamed up with faculty, staff, neighbors, and volunteers to
give back to the community in honor of the late Dr. King.

Our chaplain, the Rev. Andrew Kellner, led off with a prayer service. Special guest Latreice Branson provided musical selections and drumming.

St. James welcomed The Outreach Program, a nonprofit missioned to provide food, water, safety and education globally to people in need. The group led our community in a food packaging assembly line to measure and compile 10,000 full meals that included protein, pasta, and nutrition information.

In the midst of our service work, we shared out information about hunger in Philadelphia, and rang the celebratory bell for every 1,000 meals packaged.
Meanwhile, our 4th graders created handmade cards filled with kind thoughts and prayers to accompany the packages.

The day finished with a community circle in which students reflected on what MLK Day of Service means to them. Hamirah (8th grade) said, “It means kindness. Spending the day showing good spirit, positivity, and gratitude.”

Many of the meals went to our Welcome Table to be distributed to St. James families and neighbors in Allegheny West.

A card created by a 4th grader included a prayer and a drawing.
Time to Register for the 5K to be Held April 25th at St. James School and Laurel Hill Cemetery

The Young Professionals Group at St. James is hosting the 2020 5K, a timed event for runners and walkers. Join us for a race through our wonderful neighborhood and the beautiful Laurel Hill Cemetery.
After the race, join the Young Professionals, staff, students, and families for a family-fun gathering. We will have awards for top runners, largest teams and more. Come learn more about St. James School, tour the school campus and have fun!

Questions? Email Maggie Sanborn: .

Students participate in the annual 5K along with St. James School staff, families, neighbors, and supporters including the Young Professionals Group.

Black History Month Traditions and New Programs

Every month is Black History Month at St. James School! Even so, during February we create additional opportunities to learn and celebrate together the significant achievements of African-Americans. These include:
  • Career Day. Various professionals share their career from banking to marketing to doctors to the military to business owners to education.
  • Absalom Jones Mass. Our school community commemorates the abolitionist and America’s first black priest in the Episcopal Church.
  • Wax Museum. Students research noteworthy historical and current figures, and bring them to life by dressing in costume and presenting biographical information.
  • Room Dedications. All faculty and staff dedicate their rooms and spaces (check out our Facebook page for posts about this)
  • Special Monday Surprises. Gifts for students, including pencils, stickers, pins and bracelets.

NEW programs this year!
  • February Fridays Playlists. The Black History Month Committee worked with students to create fun music playlists that are broadcasted over the PA system during all Friday transitions.
  • Centering Discussions on Kente Cloth. Teaching and learning about the deep meaning of this cloth, which is used for the special ties worn by our students of the month.
A St. James School Love Story
By Sarah Carroll, Director of School Culture & ELA Teacher, and Kevin Todd, Director of Graduate Support, who were married by the Rev. Andrew Kellner at the Church of St. James the Less on January 25.

We first met on Sarah's demo lesson day. After she was officially hired, we were teamed for teaching English Language Arts and Social Studies for about 11 hours a day together. In May of that first year we decided maybe all of our students were right, we should go on a date. And the rest is history.

St. James School means the world to us. Its mission has become our lifes' work. So getting married at the Church of St. James the Less by Father Kellner was the easiest decision ever. The church is the most beautiful and magical church ever, with an intimate and vibrant feeling we wanted to share with our closest friends and families. Also, it holds so many special memories of the last 9 years of our lives.

In Their Own Words… “Why We Love Math”
Ms. Lerew and three of her math students in the Square Club show off the buttons signifying their membership. From left: Mulani, Saige and Myley.
For a lot of middle school students, math can be a source of anxiety and frustration. But at St. James School, Math Teacher Annie Lerew has built a culture in which learning math is a source of celebration, even when it’s challenging. She incorporates lots of opportunities to recognize math skills, both small and large, from a celebration of circumferences on Pi Day (March 17th), to special buttons earning students admission into “math societies.”

Two 5th graders explain what’s special about math class at St. James:

Mulani: “I’m in the Square Club,” she notes, showing off her Square Club button. “Squares are like, 1 x 1 = 1, 2 x 2 = 4. It’s basically the double of numbers. I know the first 20 square numbers.” Mulani says math is not her best subject, but it’s her favorite. “I love math because what we know about it keeps growing every day.”

Myley: “I like how we say it’s a ‘celebration of knowledge’ instead of a test in math class,” she says. “I’m in Square Club, too. I wanted to be in it because it’s cool and I’m good at multiplication. In other schools, you might not get to learn algebra, like you do at St. James. I’m not sure what I want to be when I grow up, but maybe a therapist,” she continues. “I think I’ll use math a lot as a therapist. Math can be a great coping skill. You can use it to help calm you down.”
One Way You Can Help This Week:
Become a Scholarship Benefit Sponsor!
Our 6th Annual Dr. Audrey Evans Scholarship Benefit is a fun and festive evening to support student scholarships at St. James School.

It will take place June 4th at WHYY , Dorrance H . Ham ilton Public Media Commons, 150 N 6th St, Philadelphia, PA 19106

The deadline to be listed as a sponsor on the invitation is March 19th.

To learn more, visit the event page or contact Martha Heuser: or 215.226.1276 x 114.
Our 2020 Honorees

Lorene Cary
Distinguished educator, author and activist; founder of Art Sanctuary;
recipient of the Philadelphia Award and six honorary doctorates

Honoring Bill and Laura Buck
Friends of St. James School whose extensive good works exemplify their lifelong commitment to empowering youth

Sponsorships start at the $1,500 level. In addition to tickets to the event and special recognition, benefits include:
  • a signed copy of Ladysitting, the newest book by honoree Lorene Cary
  • an invitation to an exclusive, behind-the-scenes tour of WHYY
  • a woodshop item handcrafted by a graduate

St. James School is a faith-based Philadelphia middle school in the Episcopal tradition, committed to educating traditionally underresourced students in a nurturing environment. The school is a community that provides a challenging academic program and encourages the development of the moral, spiritual, intellectual, physical and creative gifts in its students.
St. James School | 215-226-1276 |