Old school becoming new school…First phase $2.5 million building renovation will re-establish former John Dewey neighborhood elementary school – talented principal appointed to prepare children for achievement and future success.
JULY, 2015, Harper Woods, MI (Oak Park, MI)…Plans have been were announced today by Glenn Mach, Hanley Harper Group Inc.(HHG) controller, for the renovation and scheduled Fall 2015 opening of the original John Dewey Elementary School now named Frederick Douglass International Academy (FDIA) at 21700 Marlow Ave. in Oak Park, Michigan. This school in the management companyʼs growing roster is projected to welcome students in grades PRE-K through 6 in September.
Additionally announced today is the appointment of Rashid Faisal, Ed.M, as FDIA founding principal. Faisal comes to the school with an extraordinary history in education. He served as Project Manager and Achievement Advisor for Pearson School Achievement Services, Inc., where he provided school improvement and leadership
consultation to schools in metro-Detroit. Prior to joining Pearson, Faisal served as an elementary and middle school principal where he helped to transform the academic and school climate of schools classified as low performing.
Citing the need for an elementary school in the Oak Park neighborhood, Beata Chochla, HHG President and Founder, explained the educational strategy of the charter school group. To provide a solid academic foundation, FDIA will offer a rigorous education in English language arts, mathematics, science and social studies. Additionally, HHG schools have adopted Michiganʼs Model for Health Curriculum and the award-winning Exemplary Physical Education Curriculum.
“We believe that our children, our future world citizens, need to be ready for the next century,” said Chochla. “We also believe in education and data plus the new technology as it relates to education and to the components of STEM (science, technology, engineering and math.) These are important tools in our school toolbox. We also believe that our founding principal will enhance, energize and fully develop our studentsʼ potential to excell and exceed our goals. He served in this school in the past first as a teacher, then as a principal. It is a special homecoming for him to join us.”
Further emphasizing the need for an elementary school in the area, Chochla explained the educational strategy of the HHG charter school group. Tuition is free for enrolled students who enjoy small class size, dedicated Michigan certified teaching staff, after school tutoring and specialized activities. Breakfast, lunch and healthy snacks will be provided to the student enrollment. “Frederick Douglass is one of 24 public school academies authorized by Ferris State University. We are looking forward to strong interest and an exciting future for the new school,” said Dr. Ronald Rizzo, Director of Charter Schools, Ferris State University.