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Friendship PCS

Part I in a series dedicated to National Charter Schools Week

In 1997, following the passage of the DC School Reform Act that set the stage for the robust charter school environment in the nation’s capital, reform visionary and CER Board Member Donald Hense saw the need to improve education for locally impoverished students.

Six years later, Friendship Collegiate Academy produced its first-ever graduating class, which continued on average to have an over 90 percent graduation rate in each subsequent year.

Since their openings, Friendship campuses have helped students demonstrate substantial gains in math and reading proficiency, with high school graduates enrolling in college at an average rate of 80 percent.

Bettering student outcomes is something Friendship strives to do beyond its school walls; the network looks to enhance education for all students, especially those in surrounding neighborhoods, which is why Friendship educators and leaders have several ongoing partnerships with traditional public schools in both DC and Baltimore, MD.

To be a Friendship student goes further than mastering school subjects. It’s about embracing a set of core values that have a proven track record of helping students acquire a love of learning and turn themselves into responsible citizens.

As the District of Columbia continues to improve as a vibrant urban center, Friendship schools have been a consistent driving force, playing an integral role in neighborhood revitalization and giving students a new lease on pursuing a quality education.

Public schools, both charter and traditional, stand to benefit from the shining example provided by Friendship PCS.


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