Community Transformation: Dreams for Urban Renewal

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As the only private, independent school in north St. Louis city, we are committed to providing exceptional education that transforms the community. One of the best examples we have of our community impact is our alumni. For many students, once they graduate from elementary school, they no longer have much contact with the school or with their teachers. However, for City Academy alumni, these graduates not only keep in touch with the school and the faculty, they are provided with academic assistance, programs, and internships at City Academy.

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Summer Art

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Just because summer is here does not mean that children stop learning at City Academy! Many of our students participate in our summer program, Summer at City. Scholars receive rigorous academic instruction in the morning and then participate in summer camp activities in the afternoon. Students continue developing their skills and knowledge in science, language arts, math, and art in the summer.

This summer, we are fortunate to have Savannah Switzer as our Summer at City art teacher. Savannah studied at the Flint Institute of Arts in the summer of 2015 and is currently pursuing her dream of becoming an elementary art teacher. This summer, she has provided Summer at City students the opportunity to study a variety of art techniques while learning about various artists.

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Express Who You Are

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by Jhani S. ’16 (Thomas Jefferson ’22)

Nona, my dad’s mother, died two years ago. The thought of her dying made my head spin. Since then, I have a blank page in my head. Yet many aspects of her I remember:  her cooking, her laughter, her appearance and even her favorite animal, a jaguar. But most especially I remember her nickname for me, KING.

This I believe: nicknames express who you truly are on the inside. The person who gives you a nickname does it out of love.

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Change Gives Us Courage

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by JaKenzie Brown ’16 (MICDS ’22)

One day in 2008, I heard my mom scream. “What’s wrong?” I asked. “Obama is the President of the United States!” she exulted. “He will be the first black president.” Before then, for 119 years, there wasn’t a single black president.

Four years ago, I was eight years old. When I came to City Academy, I was shy, anxious and only talked to a few people. Over the years, that part of me diminished. I’ve spoken to many visitors and dug up the courage to sing and rap in our original song, “Color of Love.” My handwriting has even improved.

This I believe: change is good. Change is what gives us courage and inspires us to better ourselves.

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I Believe in Love

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by Ronnell J. ’16 (Chaminade ’22)

I believe in God. I believe in love. I believe in family. I believe in my support system. I believe in me.

I want to thank my parents for putting me here at City Academy.Starting City Academy as a fifth grader was very difficult, but I persevered. Starting out I felt like quitting many times. There were many concepts and strategies that I never faced.

Honestly, I did not know if I was going to make it. Once again, it wasn’t easy for me, but I believed in myself and God.

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Knowing Our History Gives Us Character

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by A’dia Dickers ’16 (Whitfield School ’22)

Over the years I have learned to know my history, my African-American history. My father is big on Africa: the geography, the people, and our roots. He has given me books and maps of Africa. He often tells me stories of my ancestors. When I was younger I thought, why does it matter if know my history or not? Can’t we just go play outside? I realize now it does matter. This I believe: history is important.

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Determination

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by Camielle W. ’16 (Crossroads ’22)

Why do we attempt to retrieve something so high up on a mountain, knowing all along we wouldn’t survive the trip? What made us believe we’re going to make it to the top of the mountain in the first place?

Determination. This I Believe.

Most of us thrive on it, others take the word for granted. But no matter what point you’re at in life, everyone has felt determined to do something. Whether it’s a young girl determined to win a dare-war or a puppy determined to get that last slice of pizza stationed on the edge of the dining room table, determination drives us to make both foolish and wise decisions.

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Love Is Stronger Than Anything

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by Stephen McDaniel ’16 (Priory ’22)

If someone were to ask you, why is there so much hate, what would you say? I would respond by saying the world has become a heartless place. Why did we become a heartless place? I couldn’t answer that. People fight, yell, and get mad at each other for no good reason.

When I see or hear about hate, I say to myself, one day this violence will change and we will treat people the same. We will stop with the violence and go down with the hate.

That is why I am a firm believer of love being stronger than anything

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If You Try, You Will Not Fail

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by Makyla Spann ’16 (Crossroads ’22)

This I believe; when you try, you do not fail.  In third grade I attended public school, I was one of the best students in the class. The homework was easy, and the teachers didn’t ask very much of me. In the middle of third grade I transferred to City Academy. I wanted to stay at my old school because it was elementary, and I was going to miss the light work. At City Academy, I had a lot more homework, and the teachers actually checked it!

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Family: The People Who Believe In You

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by Sydney Williams ’16 (John Burroughs ’22)

In 2008, I was four years old. Whenever my mom and dad dropped me off at City Academy, I cried. This place frightened me. Everything was new. I didn’t know anyone. I felt like an outsider. It was as enormous as the Incredible Hulk. What a big baby I was. Yes, I was a cry baby who missed her family.

But quickly I found another family. One family that would never let me give up no matter how bad I wanted to. I found a family here who comforted me when I was sad or having a bad day.

I’ve realized that family is not just the people who share blood, but also the people who believe in you. People who will help you strive and flourish in whatever you decide to do in life. Families are people who will help you fix mistakes and encourage you to think for yourself.

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