The idea focused on drawing a parallel between a marital relationship and the connection needed between teacher and parents.
“The idea behind this event was to show parents that just like a strong marriage, the importance of commitment, trust, communication, and partnership is crucial to our overall success,” Kinsey said.
The event was a vision of Shena Hill-Scott, Dean of Lower Elementary, who received the inspiration through a story that was shared with her years ago by Ron Clark, an innovator in education who founded his own academy in Atlanta.
“The time she took to plan and beautify our event was done with fine attention to detail and great care,” Kinsey said. “For that she is greatly appreciated!”
After welcoming parents and students to the school, Kinsey transitioned into a review of National Heritage Academies’ Four Pillars: Parental Partnership, Student Responsibility, Moral Focus, and Academic Excellence.
Pembroke teachers and staff, many dressed all in white, were invited to the front to proclaim their commitment to all students, which mimicked a wedding ceremony:
- Do you promise to challenge each child to achieve? “We do.”
- Do you promise to teach the whole child by way of academics, Moral Focus, and social emotionally? “We do.”
- Do you promise to make Pembroke Academy the BEST school of choice for our parents and scholars? “We do.”
- Do you promise to take ownership for the success of our scholars? “We do.”
Parents were then asked to rise from their seats so they too would be able to respond to the following vows:
- Do you promise to trust the process and teaching staff of Pembroke Academy? “We do.”
- Do you promise to communicate frequently and honestly with the teaching staff of Pembroke Academy? “We do.”
- Do you promise to make a commitment to bring our scholars to school daily, on time, and in complete uniform? “We do.”
- Do you promise to fully partner with the teaching staff for the success of our scholars? “We do.”
To close out the ceremony, Dean of Upper Elementary Dr. Kyle Worden sang Stevie Wonder’s “Ribbon in the Sky,” while accompanied by Music Teacher Marlin Baker on saxophone, ending the ceremony on a beautiful note.
“It really was something special,” Kinsey said. “The symbolism of this event was to showcase that just like any good marriage, we have to build upon a strong foundation of trust, communication, commitment, and partnership.”
It was the largest turnout Pembroke has had for an open house.
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Pembroke Academy is a tuition-free, public charter school in Detroit, Michigan, serving students in Young 5s through eighth grade. It is part of the National Heritage Academies network, which includes over 95 tuition-free, public charter schools serving more than 65,000 students in kindergarten through 12th grade across nine states. For more information, visit nhaschools.com.
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