The students at LeBron James’ “I Promise” School have made major accomplishments with high grade and test scores, behavioral improvements and more.
Back in 2018, James officially opened up his ”I Promise School that caters to educating at-risk youth. The school currently works with grades three and four, but there are plans to open the grade levels from one to eight by 2022.
According to The New York Times, the 240 students enrolled in I Promise have already set the tone for higher achievement. Math and reading scores have jumped from the lowest percentile for both grades in reading to 9th and 16th for third grade and fourth-grade students, respectively. While math was raised from the lowest to 18th, and fourth graders moved from second-lowest to the 30th, according to Complex Media.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
On Friday, Erica L. Green of the NYT reported that the third- and fourth-graders at I Promise School “were, by many accounts, considered unredeemable” upon their arrival — “identified as the worst performers in the Akron public schools and branded with behavioral problems.” Now, with the inaugural 240 students finished with Measures of Academic Progress testing, the school is “helping close the achievement gap in Akron.” “The 90 percent of I Promise students who met their goals exceeded the 70 percent of students districtwide, and scored in the 99th growth percentile of the evaluation association’s school norms, which the district said showed that students’ test scores increased at a higher rate than 99 out of 100 schools nationally,” Green reported.
“When we first started, people knew I was opening a school for kids,” James said. “Now people are going to really understand the lack of education they had before they came to our school. People are going to finally understand what goes on behind our doors.” In addition to providing individual educational needs and support, the school also gives clothing, food and other resources to families in need, which, is partially funded by James’ foundation.
“We are reigniting dreams that were extinguished,” school principal Brand Davis said. “We want to change the face of urban education.”