The Ida B. Wells Community Academy is an independent, public
    educational institution founded by Dr. Edward W. Crosby and
    Mrs. Emma Jean Calhoun and a consortium of community organizations
    based in Akron, Ohio. The Academy is chartered and funded by the
    Ohio State Department of Education.

    semper novi quid ex Afrika!
       "Everything new always comes out of Africa!"  — Pliny

“Building Young Scholars for Their Future”
Part III

               Students Qualifying for DPIA Funds

It is difficult to state definitively the percentage of students qualifying for Disadvantaged Pupil Instruction Act (DPIA) funds because of factors other than parental incomes which tend to fluctuate. The others are eligibility for free breakfast and lunch, all-day kindergarten, reduction of class sizes, etc. Suffice it to say that the Academy currently enrolls 85 to 90% or more students who qualify for these funds. The Ida B. Wells Community Academy generated data supporting our expectations. There are sufficient numbers of so-called economically disadvantaged and “at-risk” students, as defined above, residing within the metropolitan boundaries of the City of Akron and are currently attending Akron public and private schools. These data (based on 1999 statistics) also attest to a pool of other children who will come of age and will attend Akron’s public schools. Moreover, the numbers of disadvantaged students (35.8%), the dropout rates (28.7 black and 24.4% white) and the number of low-income families black and white (the District median income is $21,006) supports the Academy's move to establish a student- and parent-friendly learning environment. According to the 1990 U.S. census, the total population of Akron had a median income of $32,000; the African American population by contrast had a median income of $18,709 with 50% of the population below the poverty level (11,325) and 125% of the population (or 22,314 persons) below the poverty level. Of the 32,331 young people enrolled in the Akron public schools in 1997, 46.8 are African American. There were approximately 9,914 African American school-age youngsters between ages 5 to 14 years residing in Akron. Since the total population of the city is 223,019 and its residents earned a very modest median income, it was clear there was also within the white community a substantial number of youth who could be defined as at-risk and underserved and cloud qualify for DPIA funds

      3.   Accountability

Various psychometric instruments, e.g., the California Achievement Test, the Academy will be used to measure scientifically the degree to which its students exhibit the cultural, historical and social knowledge and sensitivities (sensibilities) the curriculum fosters. The inference here is that the Academy’s administration will establish various and frequent means and opportunities for staff to conduct structured assessments of . . .

           1.   how well students (and parents) understand and can relate  the Academy's curricular structure, teaching style and methodology and Academy-student-community-parent relations;
           2.   how well students are comprehending the lessons, learning materials and related class materials and activities;
           3.   how well the Academy is making progress in its overall development as a creative and responsive learning process; and
           4.   how well the Academy has met its planned and comprehensive continuum of educational services for all students and particularly for special population students as required by rule 3301-51-04 and in accordance with the procedural safe-guards outlined in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Part B. The recently passed legislation by the Ohio House – HB 364 and the US Senate’s No Child Left Behind Act will have a most immediate impact on how the Academy’s Board, academic administrators and faculty structure the academic accountability rules, regulations and procedures relative to student progress.

The Academy's choice of methods to assess pupil progress is based on the following five beliefs about assessment:

          1.   In order to have a complete and accurate picture of a student's growth, a variety of standardized and nonstandardized types of assessments should be used. Assessments should focus on an individual student's personal growth towards a proficiency standard and not necessarily compared with the performance of other students;
          2.   There should be a close relationship between a desired student outcome and the means used to assess it;
          3.   Assessing what students do with knowledge is as important as assessing what knowledge they have;
          4.   Assessment should promote and support reflection and self-evaluation on the part of students, staff, parents and the Academy; and
          5.   Assessment, intervention and evaluation should proceed along the lines defined by the Mid-Eastern Ohio Special Education Regional Resource Center (MEO/SERRC) in its "Combined Initiative Training: Assessment and Intervention" manual:

Intervention-Based Assessment (IBA) is a collaborative, problem-solving process which focuses upon a specific concern that affects the learner's educational progress within a learning environment. Indiviuals involved in this ongoing process include the learner, the learner's family and educators, who mutually define and analyze the concern(s), develop measurable goals, and design and implement Interventions while monitoring the effectiveness of these through the use of performance data.

Intervention-Based Multifactored Evaluation (IBMFE) extends the IBA process and is used exclusively for students suspected of having a disability. A disability, as defined by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), exists when the nature and intensity of the interventions constitute a need for specially designed instruction without which the student's performance would be adversely affected.

The Academy also uses with students a variety of performance-based assessment tools such as portfolios, demonstrations, and performance tasks. The Academy uses standardized tests that compare individual student progress to state standards. These standardized proficiency tests are also intended to report the proportion of students at the Ida B. Wells Community Academy who have reached (or exceeded) the state’s and the Academy’s proficiency standards in math, reading, writing, science, and social studies.

               Tools for Assessment

Portfolios will provide one perspective for assessing student growth. A portfolio is a daily or weekly collection of representative work. Reading, writing, speaking portfolios, for example, will contain results of student performance on a variety of assessments in writing, reading, and speaking. Scoring ranges will be developed and staff will receive training on using these agreed upon scoring ranges. Student reflection will be an integral part of the portfolio. In addition, the portfolios will serve as one tool that lets teachers determine how well they meet the Academy-adopted proficiency targets, say, in one language – English – and becoming semi-fluent in a second language, say Kiswahili.

Demonstrations provide another means for assessing student growth. Demonstrations will, for example, be a part of a Reading/Writing/Speaking Portfolio or to assess proficiency in mathematics. The key element will be students demonstrating their attainment of specified standards to a panel of the Academy's staff, parents et al. These standards or desired outcomes will be based on the Ohio state-mandated curricular proficiency standards.

Performance represents a set of tasks that are assigned as a means of assessing students growth. These tasks will be based in combined curricular areas of language arts and social sciences but not exclusively so. Teachers will identify a number of performance goals that reflect content covered during the six-week grading period, semester or school year. Once identified, these goals will be defined and scoring methodologies devised so that the mastery of learning outcomes can be specifically determined. These goals will be designed to measure what students know and how well they apply what they know.

The Academy's faculty as a group or individually will assess how well students can put into action what they have learned and experienced to construct, perform and carry out a meaningful service project designed to meet a community need within or without the Academy. The task will demonstrate the student's ability to integrate several expected and desired social, educational or historical-cultural outcomes for students. A possible task could be stated as follows:
"Identify a service opportunity to serve the community. As you prepare yourself to perform the service, research, read and comprehend what others have done under similar circumstances that is related to the service you have chosen. Develop a written proposal that describes the service and that persuades others that what you intend to do is worthwhile. Provide the service. Finally, describe the process in writing as  well as through another medium that can be video, music, speech, a song, art, poetry, or dance. You decide which medium (media) you want to use."
Standardized Assessment Tests that compare student progress to a proficiency standard will be used. These tests include the Ohio Board of Education Proficiency Test to measure reading, writing, math, social studies and  science proficiency in the 4th grade. As grade levels are added, the Academy will use proficiency tests for the 6th grade. The Academy will consider the Language Assessment Scale for measuring gains in English proficiency; the California Aptitude Test (CAT); the Student Attitude Measure (SAM) to measure student motivation, student academic self confidence, student sense of control over performance, and student sense of instructional mastery. The Academy will also use a battery of assessment tests normed on inner-city and disadvantaged youth (see Handbook of Tests and Measurements for Black Populations. Reginald Jones, ed. 2 Volumes. Cobb & Henry Publish-ers, Hampton, VA, 1996). In addition to these instruments, the Academy will consider using the Wechsler Individual Achievement Test (WIAT) and the Iowa Test of Basic Skills (ITBS). Other achievement test options may be used for groups: the CTBS, the MEA, the Metropolitan Achievement Tests, the Stanford Achievement Test; and for individual achievement: the Woodcock-Johnson, the Peabody Individual Achievement Test (PIAT), the Wide Range Achievement Test (WRAT), the Key Math, the Woodcock Reading, the Kaufman Assessment Battery for Children, and the Diagnostic Achievement Test for Adolescents.

      4.   Effective Educational Practices

               Parental Involvement

The Academy's decision to involve parents as equal partners or owners of the Academy in fulfilling meaningful and critical operational and managerial imperatives throughout the Academy's start-up and operational phases is not usually replicated in traditional public and private schools. These imperatives include teaching, administrative and governance functions, committee assignments of various sorts, e.g., discipline, curriculum design and delivery, student recruitment and admissions, faculty/staff hiring and training, transportation, fund raising, and facility management and identification. Their children will attend an educational program wherein they, too, will have a role in the program's operation and governance (see Sowande's "Program Harmony Model"). The Academy's program structure and continuum of educational options and procedural safeguards will be designed to meet the needs of students with disabilities. The parents of these children will be integrally involved with these and other curricular and managerial aspects of the Academy. This full package of educational services will, therefore, help persuade parents and the community that the Ida B. Wells Community Academy is a safe haven for their children and is intent on achieving excellence over and above other traditional educational programs.

               Classroom Management

Classrooms are to be administered by a trained and experienced teacher-principal and individually managed by certified teachers or teaching teams in collaboration with assistant teachers. A trained special education teacher (or teachers) will be on staff. These teachers will construct matrices of teaching strategies that will encompass the following areas and a number of others, e.g., classroom control and conflict resolution, that will be introduced as necessitated by the needs of Academy students.

      1.  Meeting students where they are socially, culturally and academically and then moving them to higher and
more intensive academic levels supported by incorporating instructional emphases such as the avoidance of threat, meaningful and relevant content, learning style choices, sufficient time to assimilate content, an enriched learning environment, student-to-student collaboration, and immediate feedback;
      2.   Designing methodologies to confirm the Academy's belief that all children can learn and that it is incumbent on educators to make that learning happen;
      3.   Self-learning projects that are student or teacher initiated, conducted first in-school and later, based on
student maturity, conducted out-of-school;
      4.   A holistic paradigm that allows students to experience how one set of basic skills directly relates to other basic skills, i.e., reading to mathematics, geography to social sciences, mathematics to science, culture to history; and how all these relate to being educated in general;
      5.   Main streaming students with disabilities to the extent feasible so as to assure that all students' learning is administered equally and with care; and
      6.   Periodic and unannounced classroom visitations to monitor and upgrade teacher performance.

               Performance Expectations for Administrators, Faculty, Support Staff and Parents

All individuals actively engaged in the educational process – Governing and Advisory Board members, faculty, parents, and administrative and support staff – are required to undergo a comprehensive and ongoing training program and series of educational development workshops or forums. Since the Academy has created a nonstandard educational paradigm, and since it encourages innovation and rigorous academic standards, these training and development programs coupled with a set of Faculty and Staff Employment and Performance Expectations are essential to its proper and effective conduct and administration. Even though the Academy cannot force its students' parents to attend and participate in this program, we hope parents will see and act on the absolute need for them to be integrally involved so that they, too, can join in as knowledgeable partners and cooperate with the other members of the educational team. It is to serve this need that students, parents and faculty and staff are presented with a detailed handbook that clearly outlines their rights and responsibilities. Moreover, parents are, in the Academy's view, an essential educational support system for their children. They, too, must not only understand what is being done educationally but also be able to make suggestions to better the Academy's effectiveness.

The tentative style and content of the Academy's institutional and professional development program follows the following operational outline.

               Program Governance and Institutional Development and Planning

The Academy has two major governance and institutional development and planning boards or committees. They are (1) the Board of Governors and (2) the Site-Based Management Committee (also referred to as the “Advisory Board”).

The Board of Governors conducts or directs the affairs of the corporation and exercises its powers, subject to the limitations of the Ohio Revised Code, Chapter 1702: Nonprofit Corporation Law, the Articles of Incorporation and the Board’s Bylaws. The Board may delegate the management of the activities of the corporation to others, so long as the affairs of the corporation are managed properly, and its powers are exercised, under the Board's ultimate jurisdiction. The Board of Governors is to have no more than fifteen (15) members – currently it has five (6). The Governors are responsible for the governance and leadership of the Academy by means of established standards that are set to communicate direction throughout the Ida B. Wells Community Academy and its Learning Center. The Governors assure that this direction is consistent with the Academy’s educational philosophy and mission, the needs and expectations of its stakeholders – Governors, students, parents, faculty, staff and community – and federal mandates to improve the traditional educational delivery system and demand high academic achievement for all its students. All Governors as well as faculty and staff should own a PC and be computer literate to facilitate Board and faculty and staff communications. To accomplish this and other institutional imperatives, the Board of Governors in its role as the general leadership body of the Academy has developed the following aims:

            1.   Sustain high initiative, creative teaching performance, individual development, continuous learning, self directed responsibility, and innovation based upon thoughtful, written and researched proposals based on  educational principles;
            2.   Consider, when direction is set and decisions are made, the needs, requirements and expectations the Academy's stakeholders (i.e., Governors, students, parents, faculty, staff and community);
            3.   Establish, communicate, monitor, demonstrate, and reinforce the Academy's goals, direction, and performance expectations;
            4.   Assure that the Academy's constituencies know and support its educational philosophy, mission, goals, direction, expectations, and performance and assessment strategies and intended results;
            5.   Assure that the Academy's practices comply with regulatory, legal, and ethical requirements as set forth in its published Bylaws and ORC 3314.03(A)(11)(c). Refer to for more specific information;
            6.   Anticipate public concerns with the Academy's operations; assess potential impact of these concerns on the Academy and the communities it serves and address these concerns in a timely manner;
            7.   Create and sustain a safe and healthy environment, conducive to learning and equity;
            8.   Maintain a learner-focused environment;
            9.   Monitor the Academy's governance and leadership system to assure it supports and strengthens its various stakeholders -- students, parents, faculty, staff and the Akron community at large; and
          10.   Continuously evaluate and improve the Academy’s governance and leadership system.

The Site-Based Management Committee (or Advisory Board) has no fewer than nine (9) members and is composed of nine (9) members – the Principle, 2 parents of enrolled students, 2 certified teachers, 2 enrolled students (preferably 5th or 6th graders or above), 2 community residents This committee is responsible for overseeing the daily educational operation and advising the Academy’s principal of any perceived difficulties. The Site-based Management Committee reports to the Board of Governors through the Principal who consults with the Chief Administrative Officer, a non-voting member of the Governing Board. The Advisory Board meets weekly or monthly (or daily as deemed necessary by the Principal). It has advisory and limited managerial responsibility for:

               a.   staff professional development, training and orientation; discussion of faculty reading assignments;
               b.   curriculum planning, textbook selection, monitoring and classroom visitations;
               c.   hiring practices for instructional staff (all types), teaching assignments and performance expectations;
               d.   volunteer staff recruitment and assignment of teaching and other duties; before class inspirational;
               e.   student recruitment, registration and enrollment; suspensions and dismissals / expulsions;
               f.    food service delivery system, physical education and recess activities; and
               g.   fund raising, public forums and other Academy events.

Both the Governors and Advisors must undergo a comprehensive professional development and training process that includes but is not limited to the following topics:

               Orientation, In-Service Training and Professional Development

               a.   Independent Public School
               b.   Community Educational Partnership                a.   An Infused Curriculum: What and How
               b.   Curriculum Revision – Delete
               c.   Curriculum Revision – Add
               d.   Cultural Responsiveness                a.   Controlling the Classroom
               b.   Behavior
               c.   Discipline
               d.   Conflict Resolution
               e.   Classroom Setup and Design
               f.    Team (Collaborative) Teaching                a.   Instructional and Managerial Accountability, Assessment and evaluation                Administrative, Instructional and Fiscal Oversight

All matters relating to the overall conduct and administration of the Academy are managed by its Board of Governors. This includes a wide assortment of responsibilities many of which are itemized on p. 13 above. A short list of these responsibilities is given below:

The Academy’s Board of Governors may be composed of officials from Kent State University and the University of Akron, e.g., deans and department chairs and faculty, as well as parents, professional educators, community residents in general, health officials, representatives of social service agencies, religious leaders, psychologists, school teachers and business persons.

The current members of the Board of Governors are the following:

The Academy’s academic operation is currently administered by As indicated above, the Academy has a Site-based Management Committee or Advisory Board composed of students, parents of students with and without disabilities, teachers, administrators, and community professionals. This Advisory Board oversees the school's daily educational operation, i.e., teaching assignments, curriculum revision, teacher performance, textbook selection, student discipline, etc. In short, on-site management is an operational imperative. The Advisory Board, as stated, meets monthly, weekly or daily as necessary.

     5.     Program Development and Consultation Network

As outlined above, the Academy has developed, among other things, a comprehensive Network of professional individuals who have been and will continue to be instrumental in its planning, professional development and orientation programs, and in its implementation processes. These individuals along with others may be consultants or members of  the Board of Governors or members of the Advisory Board, i.e., the Site-Based Management Committee. As the planning and operational phases proceed, this network will expand or contract. Presently, the following individuals have agreed or consented to be considered as members of this network and have offered their professional services.

             Institutional Planning and Program Developers (Many of these individuals are no longer active)

     6.    The Academy's Co-Founders and Developers

               Edward W. Crosby, PhD

Dr. Edward W. Crosby was born in Cleveland, Ohio. He currently serves in conjunction with Mrs. E. Jean Calhoun as a co-founder and is the former chair of the Board of Governors and Superintendent of the Academy's Learning Center. He is currently the chair of the Personnel and Benefits Committee and serves as the Academy’s Program Management Consultant. He was one of the founders of the Experiment in Higher Education at Southern Illinois University in East St. Louis in 1965 and the founder and first director of the Institute for African American Affairs and subsequently the chair of the Department of Pan-African Studies at Kent State University from 1969 to January 1, 1994, when he retired and became emeritus chair and professor of the Department of Pan-African Studies and professor emeritus of the Department of Modern and Classical Language Studies (German).

In 1952, Dr. Crosby enrolled at Kent State University to major in pre-law and secondary education. He was also selected to join Air Force ROTC detachment. After two quarters, because of disinterest and poor study habits, he left the university. He was then immediately drafted into the U.S. Army's Corps of Engineers. After completing basic training and attendance at a U.S. Army Supply School at Fort Belvoir in Fairfax, Virginia, he was transferred to Colliers End Camp in Hertfordshire, England, where he served in Headquarters Company, the 928th Engineer Aviation Group -- SCARWAF (Special Category Army with Air Force) as the administrative assistant to the Judge Advocate General. Dr. Crosby received his BA and MA from Kent State in 1957 and 1959 in German and Spanish and earned his PhD at the University of Kansas in 1965 in German, Medieval German Literature and Medieval History. In 1957, he began teaching at Kent State and later, in 1958, at Hiram College also in Ohio. While teaching at Hiram, he brought a number of his college students by van to Akron to join the Akron Tutorial Program sponsored by the Akron Urban League. In 1962, while on a leave of absence, he taught at Tuskegee Institute (now University) in Tuskegee Institute, Alabama. He returned to Hiram College a year later.

In 1965, Dr. Crosby resigned from Hiram College, changed his career path from teaching German and Spanish to serving the social and educational needs of Africans in America, and worked first as a full-time volunteer and later became an associate director of Akron's then recently organized Summit County-Greater Akron Community Action Council (now ASCA). During this period, he spearheaded among other community projects the establishment of an Upward Bound Program on the Hiram Campus. This program was subsequently transferred to Walsh College and later in 1971 to Kent State University.

Later in 1965, after working in Akron for six months, he joined Southern Illinois University's Experiment in Higher Education (EHE) based in East St. Louis. As the director of education at EHE, he restructured the learning process and the curriculum of the last two years of high school and first two years of undergraduate education for 200 underachieving African American (90%) and white students (10%) who were assured scholarships to continue their college careers at SIU or any other college or university in Illinois or the United States in general. The majority of these students (73%) went on to graduate. They now have earned graduate degrees and hold professional positions around the country. Two of these students studied the University of Ibadan in Nigeria, West Africa.

While in East St. Louis, Dr. Crosby was instrumental in the establishment of the Danforth Foundation's Metropolitan Scholars Program and assisted in the national evaluation of UPWARD BOUND for urban youth and compen-satory education programs for migrant and other agricultural workers through the South West Alabama Farmers Cooperative (SWAFCO) and worked with university faculty, administrators, and students to speed the establishment of African or Black Studies programs in California, Oregon, Missouri, Ohio, Texas and New York.

He returned to Kent in 1969 to found the Institute for African American Affairs and, in 1976, the Department of Pan-African Studies. From 1976-1978, while on administrative leave of absence, Dr. Crosby directed the Afro-American Studies Program at the University of Washington in Seattle. As aforementioned, Dr. Crosby was the chairperson of the Department at Kent State for 25 years (1968-1994) and promoted African-centered education. Doing so he won the respect of students and faculty at Kent, across the state of Ohio, and around the nation. He believes academic pluralism and cultural and socio-emotional holism helps place African American college and public school students at the center of the learning process and allows them to "retire upon themselves."

               Mrs Emma Jean Calhoun (No longer an active participant)

Mrs. Calhoun is the inspirational leader and co-founder of the Ida B. Wells Community Academy and served as the chair of the Academy’s Facilities Acquisition and Renovations Committee. Mrs. Calhoun has resigned from the Board and is currently honored as Governor Emeritus. She is a native of Sylacauga, Alabama and has resided in Akron for most of her life. For 28 years, Mrs. Calhoun worked at Akron City Hospital as a Licensed Practical Nurse, during which time she developed her lifelong ambition to serve her people and humanity in general. She received "The Beautification Award" from Keep Akron Beautiful in 1995, The Catholic Commission's "Certificate of Recognition for Exceptional Work for Peace and Social Justice," November 23, 1993; "Award to an Outstanding Community Activist" presented by the African American Cultural Festival and Parade Committee, July 10, 1993; and "The Martin Luther King. Jr., FESTAC Institute Certificate of Appreciation," November 30, 1987.

As a life member of the NAACP, she has been working diligently over a period of years to increase the membership rolls of this very important community organization. She has served as a Girl Scout Leader at Trinity Lutheran Church. Her hobbies include reading and traveling. She has traveled to Egypt, Israel, Greece, Liberia, Senegal, the Ivory Coast in West Africa, Mexico, and various parts of the United States. Never one to forego learning oppor-tunities Mrs. Calhoun has attended the University of Akron studying among other things courses in the African American history and culture under the tutorship of Professor Neal Holmes. She along with Professor Holmes and a committee worked concertedly and with success to have an African American history course taught in the Akron Public Schools. This course is currently taught at Buchtel, North, East, Ellet, and Firestone High Schools. She is presently working with an Akron Public Schools multicultural education committee to infuse African American history content into all grade levels – K through 12. In 1989 the parents of school- aged students informed Mrs. Calhoun about the high rate of expulsions and suspensions in the Akron Public Schools. As a result, she requested and received data from the Board of Education which demonstrated the accuracy of this assertion.

As a consequence of this involvement, Mrs. Calhoun organized the Task Force for Quality Education with Ms. Debra Calhoun, program coordinator, the American Friends Service Committee, Dr. Neal Holmes of the University of Akron, Mr. Ken McClenic, the late director of the West Akron Neighborhood Development Corporation, and Mr. Cazzell Smith, director, East Akron Community House. The Task Force for Quality Education has conducted a series of Community Education Forums at the East Akron Community House, on a wide range of topics some of which are indicated below:

For the past several years, then, Mrs. Jean Calhoun has devoted a considerable portion of her time and talents to advocating the provision of quality education to Akron's youth, particularly African American youth as well as all those depending on public education from K through 12. Education in her frame of reference is one that does not foster the standard biases of race, gender, class or color.

The résumés and curriculum vitae for the primary members of the development team and the Board of Governors are on the Academy’s Web site:
      7.    Facilities

The Academy’s initial location was in the East Akron Salvation Army at 1104 Johnston Street at South Arlington. This facility was found late, after a long and frustrating search for a facility that would accommodate administrative offices and the Academy’s Learning Center; however, to be allowed to hold our program in the facility, we had to limit the number of students we enrolled. The facility’s managers suggested that, contrary to our contract with ODE, we should enroll only 45 students instead of the required 60. The Academy compromised and sought administrative offices elsewhere in the vicinity and enrolled only 50 (52). In late June 2000, Antioch Baptist Church which had a progressive pastor and an extremely helpful congregation, Trustees and Board of Deacons invited the Academy to house its educational operation in a wing of their facility. At the end of the 2001-2002 academic year, the Academy outgrew Antioch and had to find an alternative facility. Fortunately, we had already established a relationship with the Mt. Olive Baptist Church of Akron, located at 1180 Slosson Street, which agreed to lease a considerable amount of educational and administrative space.

Mt. Olive Baptist Church also afforded the Academy the responsive community it needed. It also put us in closer touch with a community whose residents and school-aged youth the Academy was committed to serve. Thus it became manifest immediately to us that Mt. Olive would most comfortably accommodate our program structure and allow our Learning Center to thrive academically and socially. We moved into this facility in July 2002. This facility also afforded us a base and programmatic opportunity we did not have previously. We are, for instance, no more than a block or two away from an Akron Summit County branch public library, a large children’s playground area, and a large parking area that allows school buses to load and unload students safely. Moreover, we have been offered an opportunity to move into additional space to house the rapid growth of our student body and faculty and staff. The Ida B. Wells Community Academy's Learning Center and administrative offices are now in commodious space which makes for better administrative control and communication.  From here we will begin the Academy’s fifth year of its educational development endeavor to . . .

“Build Young Scholars for their Future!”

      8.  The Admissions Process

The Ida B. Wells Community Academy (the Academy) serves students residing within the Akron City School District. The Academy's student body will include low-income, under achieving, under served, under challenged and under represented inner-city youths. The Academy will also include in its student body those students with physical, behavioral and learning disabilities. The Academy's mission is to serve only students in kindergarten through the 6th grade. In the year 2004, it’s contract with the State of Ohio (ODE) will end and we will apply for a contract extension at which time, the Academy will enter into discussions with the ODE or some other approved sponsor what grade levels we will serve and for what number of years. Students will continue to be admitted to the Academy in accordance with the Ohio Revised Code, Chap. 3314.06 which stipulates that "there will be no discrimination based on race, gender, religion or handicapping condition. . . . Admission will not be limited to intellectual ability, measures of achievement or aptitude, or athletic ability."  Recently, the passage of HB 282 and HB 364 allow the Academy to admit as "interdistrict transfers" all students who reside in Ohio and outside the Akron Public School District, provided space is available. Admission to the Academy is FREE.

NOTE: Transportation is not provided for those students living outside the Akron Public School District.

As mentioned earlier, the number of students the Academy can serve is limited. If the number of applicants exceeds the Academy's capacity restrictions, excess applicants will be placed on a waiting list, and filed according to when they were received, and admitted by the determination of a lottery. This process will, in effect, create a fair process for admitting other applicants as space becomes available.

To register children parents are required to submit a Registration Form which will be used only by Ida B.Wells Community Academy officials and will be kept in the strictest confidence. If you own a computer go to Academy's Web site and click on “Registration Application” to view and print out a copy of the Application Form. Parents wishing to register their child(ren) in the Ida B. Wells Community Academy are encouraged to fill out the registration form AS SOON AS POSSIBLE and presenting all the required pre-registration materials well before the beginning of the academic year. On occasion, parents may be asked to attend public forums and other Academy sponsored informational sessions. The time and place for these forums will be publically announced  in the Akron Beacon Journal, the Reporter and other community newspapers. Additional announcements will be made on local TV Channels and Radio Stations. Posters and fliers will be placed in local church bulletins, grocery stores, barbershops and beauty salons.

      9.   Continued Operation

The Academy's Board of Governors are oriented toward developing funding networks, overseeing the preparation of grant proposals and exploring a variety of community fund raising ventures to sustain where necessary the programs contained in this overview. The Board puts its emphasis on raising funds to support envisioned site construction and capital improvements, equipment purchases and upgrades, the establishment of a computer lab, the creation of a library and media center, and a number of other things. The Academy envisions becoming a full-fledged high school. To accomplish this, the Academy's Board, administrators, faculty and staff must be actively engaged in making certain that the Academy has the human, financial and physical wherewithal to make this eventuality happen.

The End

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Akron, Ohio   44320-2730

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