A February 2013 photo of a group of Memphis Street Academy Charter School female students, who were enrolled in the “D.I.V.A. Academy” program, which focused on their self-confidence, goals and developing skills. It is just one of the many programs the school now offers for its students. MIKALA JAMISON / STAR PHOTO
To: Stacey Cruise,
C.E.O., American Paradigm Schools
Dear Ms. Cruise,
On behalf of the 24th Police District community, and the Philadelphia Police Department, I would like to take this opportunity to express my gratitude to the American Paradigm Schools, specifically for the positive changes at the Memphis Street Academy, for your contribution to the betterment of public safety in our community.
The changes at the former John Paul Jones Middle School location, [2950 Memphis St. ] have been nothing short of dramatic during the past school year (2012–2013).
Before the Memphis Street Academy Transformation, a large portion of the 24th District police personnel were dispatched to the former school regularly during the afternoon dismissal.
In addition to maintaining a contingent of officers in the area of the school at dismissal, police were called to the former school on numerous occasions throughout the school year, and there were several truants stopped by police each week in the surrounding community.
During this past school year (2012–2013), police were no longer required during school dismissals at the Memphis Street Academy and the number of truants cited in the area has declined.
The reduction in school-related police response has benefited the entire Kensington/Port Richmond community, allowing 24th District patrol officers to respond to other calls for police service and to provide preventative patrols for the area.
Each time I have had the pleasure to visit the Memphis Street Academy campus during the past school year, I noticed a dramatic change in the behavior of the children in the schoolyard.
All of the children seemed well-behaved, orderly waiting in lines and dressed in their school uniforms.
The children also seemed happy and in my opinion, it appeared as if these children now had a sense that they were part of a larger learning-conducive environment.
I thank you, James Stanton, and your entire faculty/staff at the Memphis Street Academy for not only your contributions to the betterment of the community’s public safety needs, but also for the promise of a better future through an improved educational experience for the children that have made the positive transformations to Memphis Street Academy students.
Captain Charles Vogt #115
24th Police District ••