GPISD, Uplift Education formally approve partnership

Uplift CEO Yasmin Bhatia and GPISD Superintendent Dr. Susan Hull sign documents to formalize the partnership.
Uplift CEO Yasmin Bhatia and GPISD Superintendent Dr. Susan Hull sign documents to formalize the partnership.

On March 24, Grand Prairie ISD and Uplift Education formally approved a bold partnership called Education Energized (E2) that will redefine how charters and local districts work together in North Texas. This new initiative will create a school-within-a-school program run jointly by GPISD and Uplift at Lee Elementary School in Grand Prairie.

Not only is there a great deal of local support for this endeavor by way of Educate Texas and the Meadows Foundation, the Texas Education Agency announced this week that a Public Charter School Program Start-up Grant has been awarded to the GPISD/Uplift Partnership in the amount of $530,000. This grant follows the initial support from Educate Texas and the Meadows Foundation who donated close to $300,000 in November.

The partnership represents the first time in North Texas that a charter school network and an independent school district will formally work together to promote student learning. Both school programs will share space and resources while continuing to run their existing programs. GPISD will continue to offer dual-language classes at the school, while Uplift will introduce a college preparatory program with a global focus to families enrolled in the Uplift program. In addition to sharing resources, teachers will participate in joint training, and school leaders and administrators will problem solve together.

Both the GPISD and Uplift boards of trustees are very interested to see what cross-pollination will happen, and what powerful ideas for student success will come out of the partnership.
The school, Uplift Lee Preparatory, is set to open on August 4, 2015, with grades K-2nd grade.

Photos from the event are available on the GPISD’s Flickr site.

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