Philadelphia is the birthplace of our nation’s democracy and boasts a history of momentous events and admirable leaders. Yet despite centuries of innovation and progress in the city, there is still much work to be done. Today in Philadelphia, only 61% of kids graduate from high school within four years, and only 10% will go on to graduate from college. It’s clear that not all of Philadelphia’s students are getting the education and opportunities they deserve.
Since 2003, Teach For America - Greater Philadelphia has been working in partnership with schools and community members across the region to change this reality. Each day, more than 250 corps members strive to be transformational teachers and leaders for the students of Philadelphia, Camden, NJ, and Trenton, NJ. They also work with colleagues, parents, principals, and entire neighborhoods to improve outcomes for our kids. Our alumni are also stepping up to implement systemic and innovative change. Marc Mannella (Baltimore ‘98) is the CEO of the expanding KIPP Philadelphia Charter Schools, while Dr. Joseph Conway (New York ’92) is the founder and head of the Camden’s Charter School Network. Alyson Goodner (Bay Area ’02) works at School Collective and links schools across Philadelphia. Alejandro Gac-Artigas (Greater Philadelphia ’09) is the founder of the Springboard Collaborative and leads efforts to increase literacy enrichment opportunities.
We have so many reasons to believe that Greater Philadelphia can live up to its place in history by helping our citizens fulfill the promise of the American dream, and we won’t stop working until that becomes our reality.
As of June 2013, we are beginning to transition ownership of our Camden and Trenton corps to Teach For America New Jersey (formerly Teach For America Greater Newark). By fall 2014, we will have unified our corps members and alumni in all New Jersey cities into a single, fully operational region – allowing Teach For America- Greater Philadelphia to focus our full efforts on the opportunities and challenges ahead of us in Philly.