Anthony McHenry

March 2020
One month ago, on February 27th, we were concluding our Board of Director’s meeting. We had discussed our current efforts to improve academic outcomes. We shared our amazing student and teacher retention rates. We updated everyone on our plans to increase our capacity by nearly 300 students over the next five years. At that point, Dr. Sahajpal of Advocate Aurora asked me if we were prepared for the impact of COVID-19 and more specifically, did we have a virtual learning program designed if we had to follow what some countries had chosen to do. The answer was no, to both questions.

Two weeks later, I regretfully closed the school through April 13th, our spring break. And we know now this will likely be much longer.

I share this moment with you because I am impressed, empowered, and inspired by how much we’ve accomplished since. I am more proud to be CEO of MAS than ever before. The level of effort and sacrifice our staff has shown over the last three weeks is second to none. The day after we closed, we had a virtual learning plan for our high school scholars so that they could continue to earn credits towards graduation. A similar program was implemented for our elementary and middle school scholars.

Since our school closure , we have delivered over 150 Chromebooks, given out over 1,600 breakfasts and lunches via our curbside meal program, and have spent countless hours educating our scholars via multiple online services and other creative means. There is more work to be done, more technology to get in the hands of each of our 1,200 scholars, more texts to be sent, more hope to create for whatever the future may bring.

Indeed, MAS is not closed, we are simply servicing our scholars differently.
Help us meet student needs as they arise during the school closure...