Urban Prep Academy in Chicago Celebrates 100 Percent College Acceptance Rate for 7th Year in a Row

Urban Prep Academy 2016 Graduates (photo via nbcchicago screenshot)
Urban Prep Academy 2016 Graduates (photo via nbcchicago screenshot)

article by Katie Kim via nbcchicago.com

The families of Urban Prep Academy‘s 2016 graduating class shared a proud moment at the school’s commencement on Saturday. But this ceremony had a special meaning, as school administrators say all 252 graduating seniors have been accepted into a four-year college or university.

“I’m so excited. I’m going to get emotional,” said proud mom Ebony Muhammad.

The graduating seniors are all African-American males from the charter school’s Englewood, West, and Bronzeville campuses. The class of 2016 is carrying on a tradition, as every single Urban Prep graduate since 2010 has been accepted into four-year colleges and universities.

“It’s like a dream come true. I’ve been waiting on this a long time,” one student said.

Graduating senior Rudolph Long said he’s the first in his family to not only graduate high school, but to go on to college. And the young man from Auburn Gresham is doing so on a full-ride scholarship.  “I don’t think it’ll ever sink in. It hasn’t, but it just means that I’m changing the narrative for people not only from my family, but for African-Americans as a whole,” Long said.

Juwaun Cooper-Muhammad is going to Georgetown University in the fall.  “Urban Prep was the best thing that ever happened to me, along with my mother,” Cooper-Muhammad said. “We’re breaking barriers and this is a moment that I’m going to remember for the rest of my life.”

No one is more proud of Juwaun than his mother.  “I was a teen mom and it makes me know that we can jump over these hurdles,” Ebony Muhammad said, choking back tears. “These obstacles that were in our way, we were able to do it.”

To add to the joy of the celebration, the seniors were awarded more than $11 million combined in scholarships to help pay for their tuition.

And these students say that this milestone is just the beginning.

“I just want to give back to whole city really, for making me who I am today,” Long added.

Source: Chicago High School Celebrates 100 Percent College Acceptance Rate | NBC Chicago http://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/Chicago-High-School-Celebrates-100-Percent-College-Acceptance-Rate-381905451.html#ixzz4Bf0oWiuc

4 thoughts on “Urban Prep Academy in Chicago Celebrates 100 Percent College Acceptance Rate for 7th Year in a Row”

  1. “The story of Urban Prep is a marketing story, not a balanced story or a ‘miracle school’ by any means. In the year that I wrote about Urban Prep their graduation rate was nothing to brag about. It is not unusual for UP to start with 155 students in the 9th grade, and four years later graduates around 55 Seniors.” https://dianeravitch.net/2014/07/07/the-same-old-miracle-school-in-chicago-with-a-high-attrition-rate/

    “Nearly half of the boys who started their freshman year with this year’s graduating class are not finishing with them. The boys who are not graduating are actually the boys with the greatest academic difficulties, the most behavioral difficulties, and arguably the hardest the reach….They demonstrate what many critics of charter schools regularly point out. When charter schools outperform public schools, they frequently do so by ‘creaming,’ or maintaining the students most likely to succeed. Meanwhile, they simultaneously practice ‘dumping,’ or sending the students that would lower their success rates away, in the best case scenario, back to public schools.” http://www.politicususa.com/2012/04/07/the-not-so-miraculous-charter-school-solution.html

    1. Well, what do you think? You can’t do the uncle Tom by separating the tare from the wheat. See, with an enrollment that small you can’t afford to look at the best or brightest boy in your school. Don’t feel bad if every boy didn’t succeed, because boys don’t comprehend chunks of material, but boys have a stronger ability to visualize chunks of materials than girls. Don’t worry it could be environmental. The boy has to be man for his family. The boy may wake up and don’t find no food in the refrigerator. The boy may come home to a dark cold apartment. It could be anything that causes a lack of achievement for boys at your school.
      Eric H Smith
      Graduate Assistant
      DePaul University
      Graduate College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

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