We are thrilled to share that Propel’s co-founder, Jeremy Resnick, was honored with the Distinguished Individual Leadership Award at Coro’s Martin Luther King Jr. Leadership and Diversity Awards ceremony last weekend.
This event celebrates Dr. King’s values-based leadership in the service of a more inclusive democracy, and awards individuals and organizations in the Pittsburgh community whose work reflects those principles. The award recognizes the Western Pennsylvania success story that Propel has become.
Ten years ago, Propel had yet to open its first school. It was clear that there was a dire need for better schools in many Allegheny County communities. Jeremy, along with current Propel Schools superintendent, Dr. Carol Wooten, and a few other pioneers, believed it was possible to use the recently-passed charter school law to establish and operate a network of high-performing schools in those communities. But many others were deeply skeptical.
Now, ten years later, Propel is an undeniable success. With 3,000 students attending nine Propel schools, Propel is Pennsylvania’s top-performing charter school organization with student achievement results that far surpass those at demographically comparable school districts. Among schools serving significant numbers of student in poverty, three of the top eight schools in Allegheny County are Propel schools.
While the award is welcome recognition, the work is far from finished. Thousands of children are on Propel waiting lists, and more Propel schools are needed to serve those families who want a better option for their children. Propel is responding with plans to open more schools and redouble its efforts to eliminate every kind of achievement gap.
As we do, we recognize that Propel’s success is the result of the extraordinary efforts of many individuals. As Dr. King observed, “Human progress is neither automatic nor inevitable… Every step toward the goal of justice requires sacrifice, suffering, and struggle–the tireless exertions and passionate concern of dedicated individuals.” We are gratified to have you and so many others supporting our work.