East Lake’s Drew Charter School celebrates graduation, STEAM certification

Posted by Mary Margaret Stewart May 10, 2017

Dr. Charles R. Drew was the namesake of Atlanta’s first charter school. A sculpture of Drew was unveiled at the school on Feb. 25, 2016. Photo provided by Drew Charter School

Charles R. Drew Charter School is gearing up for class of 2017’s graduation, celebrating its first “cradle-to-college pipeline in the East Lake community” over the next few weeks of May.

Class of 2017 is a total of 82 students who have been “an integral part of the neighborhood’s holistic revitalization led by the East Lake Foundation.”

These seniors were acknowledged last night at the Greater Piney Grove Baptist Church at Senior Awards Day, where Drew Charter School recognized students with awards and scholarships for their academic records and athletic accomplishments.

On Senior Decision Day, from 2 to 4 p.m. on May 12, class of 2017 will declare the next steps for pursuing their higher education.

The event will be hosted at the school’s Center for the Arts, located at 301 E. Lake Blvd SE, Atlanta, Ga. 30317.

Finally, to seal the deal on Drew Charter School’s first-ever senior class, the graduation will be held in the school’s gymnasium on Saturday, May 20, from 4 to 6 p.m.

The ceremony will be student-led, and local figures such as Atlanta Public Schools’ Superintendent Meria Carstarphen, Former Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin, and Governor Nathan Deal will be at the graduation.

In other related news, Charles Drew Charter Elementary Academy is continuing to nurture students through the East Lake community school system. The Elementary Academy was recently deemed the first STEAM-certified school in the Atlanta Public School system. STEAM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Mathematics.

State School Superintendent Richard Woods recognized the school for its accomplishment during an April 20 ceremony.

“We saw that a variety of enrichment classes such as dance, visual arts, robotics engineering design are available…” Woods said in a recent press release. “Students are exposed to many different STEAM careers that will one day inspire the next generations of engineers, artists, doctors, entrepreneurs and innovators.”

Superintendent Carstarphen agreed that STEAM inspires the future generations’ career pathways, stating in a recent press release that “it’s never too early to start thinking about college and a potential career.”

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