First Sponsored Charter School in Kansas City Receives $1.6 Million

Funds will be used to support STEAM instruction over three-year period.

Kansas City Public Schools’ first sponsored charter school has received $1.6 million from two local philanthropic groups.

The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation provided a $1 million donation to the Kansas City Neighborhood Academy charter this week, and the Hall Family Foundation gave $600,000 to support the implementation of academic instruction focused on science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEAM). The grants will be given over a three-year period.

The charter public school was established through a partnership between the Urban Neighborhood Initiative and Kansas City Public Schools. It is scheduled to open Aug. 2 in the old Wendell Phillips Elementary School building on E. 24th Terrace in Kansas City, MO.

In its inaugural year, the charter is expected to serve about 220 students from pre-K to second grade. An additional grade will be added each year up to sixth grade, Robin Henderson, the charter school principal, told the Kansas City Star.

The school is located six blocks south of the historic 18th and Vine District, in a neighborhood served by the Urban Neighborhood Initiative. The initiative was established to revitalize about 10 Kansas City low-income neighborhoods east of Troost Avenue, the Kansas City Star reported.

The program was designed to support children and families through mixed-income housing, wellness services and cradle-to-college educational opportunities with a school at the center.

About the Author

Richard Chang is associate editor of THE Journal. He can be reached at [email protected].