Sojourner Truth Academy

Sojourner Truth Academy

Sojourner Truth Academy [] (STA) is an open-enrollment charter high school opening in New Orleans, Louisiana in August 2008.

Through a rigorous college preparatory curriculum with a special emphasis, across disciplines, on social justice activism, the mission of STA is to equip all students with the academic skills necessary to attend four-year colleges or universities, and to empower them to serve as local "scholar-leaders" in the rebirth and strengthening of their New Orleans community. Enrollment in STA is free, and students are not required to meet any academic admissions benchmarks beyond those required by Louisiana law. [ Sojourner Truth Academy ] ]

STA will open with one hundred ninth graders for the 2008-2009 school year, and grow by one year for the following three years. By the time STA reaches maximum enrollment at the start of the 2011-2012 academic year, the school promises to provide an estimated four hundred New Orleans students in grades nine through twelve with the highest-quality education.

In addition to its special focus on community leadership and college preparation, STA is distinguished by its pledge to maintain high expectations for all students; ensure small class sizes; hire dedicated, passionate and experienced teachers; provide free breakfast, lunch and afternoon snacks to all students; welcome and encourage student and parent input in school policies and decision-making; organize "community action projects" and internships for students; organize annual trips and college visits; and guarantee special support for English language learners.

STA will be led by co-founders Kristin Leigh Moody and Channa Mae Cook. Moody will serve as Principal of Pupil Services and Operations at STA. She holds a B.A. in Secondary Education/English from Hunter College in New York, and an M.S. in Educational Leadership and Administration from Pepperdine University in Los Angeles. She has served as an educator in Atlanta, Harlem and Manhattan, and most recently taught high school in the Los Angeles Unified School District. She has wide-ranging experience in special education, peer counseling and gang intervention programs.School Charter, Sojourner Truth Academy]

Cook will serve as Principal of Curriculum and Instruction at STA. She holds a B.A. in English with a minor in African American Studies from Stanford University, where she also earned an M.A. in Education with a secondary teaching credential. She began her teaching career at the Los Angeles Center for Enriched Studies, a public school serving grades six through twelve. Inspired by the possibilities for improvement she saw in the Los Angeles public schools, Channa completed an M.S. in Educational Leadership and Administration at Pepperdine University. In her final year with the Los Angeles public schools, Channa worked as the Literacy Coach at Crenshaw High School, helping teachers implement effective practices to improve student literacy.

STA has received financial and developmental support from New Schools for New Orleans [] , the Walton Family Foundation [] and the NewSchools Venture Fund [] .


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