Richmond public schools hold "choice" event

By Jola Szubielski - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - This weekend, Richmond is showcasing the strengths of its public schools and for the first time, parents and students will have a new "choice".

With the Patrick Henry School opening its doors for the first time in July of 2010, representatives wanted to be a part of the choice campaign, ensuring they were a real option for Richmond students. School officials had their first choice event in the spring showcasing schools from that particular district to encourage parents and students to consider Richmond public schools.

"We want them to come in our schools and take advantage of what we have and help us grow," said Dr. Yvonne Brandon, Richmond Public Schools Superintendent.

Representatives from the future charter school weren't a part of the series the first time around, likely because the charter school falls under the school board, not the administration. But this Saturday a group from Patrick Henry will be on hand and walking door to door alongside Richmond public school officials.

"We want to make sure parents, as we advertise the various choices they have, we want to make sure that this is one choice people are considering," said Tyron Bey, Director of Community Engagement.

The charter school as a year-round school is set to open in July of next year, so it's crucial its members are involved this year. It's already raised tens of thousands of dollars, received grants, and is in the process of hiring a principal.

"We're working on fundraising, we do have work to do in that area, but we need volunteers for lots of things. We have projects around the grounds, beautification, clean up jobs on the inside," said President of Patrick Henry Charter School Deborah Butterworth.

But the board is moving forward, taking student applications from January 1 to February 12. The choice event will kick off Saturday at Thompson Middle School at 10 a.m. Volunteers and school officials will then go door to door ending at Westover Hills Elementary School around 11:30 a.m. Everyone interested in the 4th district schools and the Patrick Henry Charter School is invited to attend.

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