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Democracy Prep Public Schools

ABOUT

Democracy Prep Public Schools is a network of free, open-enrollment, high-performing public charter schools committed to preparing students for success in college and a life of active citizenship. Democracy Prep’s DREAM Team of educators and staff currently educates nearly 6,000 scholars in grades K-12 across the country.

A pioneer in authentic civic education and charter school turnaround, Democracy Prep achieves remarkable academic growth for all students, especially those with special needs. By proving that all students—regardless of race, socioeconomic status, or zip code— can achieve at extremely high academic levels, Democracy Prep seeks to transform not only the lives of our students, but also raise the expectations for public schools across the nation and beyond.

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DEMOCRACY PREP


We are committed to attracting, developing, and retaining exceptional adults to work in and for our schools. Democracy Prep staff members receive weekly professional development during the school year and three weeks of intensive professional development in the summer, and are guided by explicit career ladders and opportunities for growth.

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WHAT MAKES WORKING AT DEMOCRACY PREP SPECIAL?

OUR FOCUS ON CIVIC ENGAGEMENT

At Democracy Prep, civics is incorporated into our curriculum at every grade level. We believe that our scholars will change the world, and we want them to be equipped with the skills to do just that. One component of our civics program is an emphasis on the importance of voting and political engagement. All of our scholars go out into their neighborhoods to encourage community members to vote. All of our scholars also participate in Days of Service, when they have the opportunity to complete a community service project with their classmates, like delivering meals to the homebound or refurbishing a community garden.




OUR INTELLECTUAL AUTONOMY WITH STRUCTURED SUPPORTS

As educators, we know that there are certain core practices that are essential to ensuring all scholars receive a rigorous, joyful experience- deeply understanding curriculum, strategically analyzing data, building strong relationships. What this looks like may differ in each region and school- and we believe that those closest to the ground need to be involved in making those decisions. Democracy Prep provides strong frameworks and systems, and leaders work alongside teachers to ensure that these systems and frameworks are placing every scholar on the path to college– and questioning when they are not. Having autonomy within a framework ensures we can be an outcomes-driven organization.
EDUCATING ALL SCHOLARS

We are committed to educating all scholars, regardless of their learning needs. This includes back-filling any empty seats at all grade levels, educating scholars with IEPs and 504s using targeted interventions from our ACT (Academic Collaboration or Special Education) Team, and using thoughtful data measures to make sure that every single one of our scholars is on the path to college.

ACT: ACT, or Academic Collaboration Team, is our name for our Special Education team. Our ACT team ensures that all of our scholars receive the support they need to excel in school.

ARTS: We are proud that our schools have a thriving arts program. Our scholars have the opportunity to participate in speech and debate, Jazz band, keyboard band, musical theater, dance, visual arts, and more. The Democracy Prep speech and debate team has won many state and national titles.

ATHLETICS: Democracy Prep scholars are offered many opportunities to participate in athletics, including soccer, basketball, football, and cheerleading.




OUR GLOBAL CITIZENS PROGRAM

Upon graduation, more than 60% of our alums will have traveled abroad on an educational trip at least once during their high school years. By comparison, only 1 in 10 U.S. undergraduates will study abroad and less than 20% of those who do are African American or Latinx. These experiences not only help our scholars to stand out as college applicants but provide them with invaluable social capital during college and beyond.


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