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Dear Friend,

February was yet another busy month for KIPP LA’s schools and students, filled with Valentine's and President's Day celebrations, and of course lots of learning!

In this month’s e-newsletter, we’re excited to share that families across our region participated in the Families That Can rally for high-quality education, launch a new suite of resources and videos featuring KIPP Empower Academy's blended learning model, and get your toes tapping with a report on the KAO Winter Jam!

First, mark your calendars for MOKA 2012! We are thrilled to announce that this year’s MOKA (Museum of KIPP Art) will take place on June 19, 2012 at the Pico House in Downtown LA. Keep an eye out for the save-the-date, and in the meantime if you have any questions, please contact

  KIPP LA Families Rally for High-Quality Education for All

On Saturday, February 4th, families from across the KIPP LA network participated in a rally coordinated by Families That Can, showing their support for high quality education options for all students. Over 5,000 parents, students, and advocates attended the rally, which was held in partnership with Alliance for a Better Community, United Way LA, and Families in Schools, among others. 

The program included speeches by educators, parents, and public officials, including LAUSD Board President Mónica Garcia, Superintendent John Deasy, and Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.
Follow this link for more information on the rally and to view a video produced by Families That Can detailing the morning’s events: View the video.

  KIPP Empower Academy Shares Its Blended Learning Model

Technology in the classroom has always been an interesting subject, and lately blended learning has become a hot topic in the education sphere. KIPP LA Schools is proud to be contributing to the conversation. Now halfway through its second year of operation, KIPP Empower Academy (KEA) is providing an insider's look into its innovative blended learning instructional model with the launch of a new suite of informational resources on the KEA website.

With 15 laptops in each classroom, KEA students rotate between small-group instruction with a teacher and adaptive software on the computer, spending 25-30 minutes on the computer per day in both reading and math. Through this strategic use of personalized instruction and technology, KEA is able to ensure a 14:1 student-teacher ratio in reading, writing, math, and science.

Included in the suite of resources are two videos that walk through the model and its impact. The first provides a three-minute overview of blended learning at KEA. In the second, the model is explored in-depth, with additional focus on how the rotational model functions throughout the school day.
View the blended learning overview video at the link below:


Also included in the informational package is a KEA case study of their first year of operation (including information on the school's design, staffing, and schedule) and a list of frequently asked questions about the model. Check back in the coming months for two additional resources—a webinar with Principal Mike Kerr and a virtual tour of the school!



Students at KEA spend 25-30 minutes 
on the computers per day for reading and math.

The online software that KEA uses is adaptive, zooming advanced students ahead and cycling back to reteach lessons if students are struggling.

  KAO Winter Jam Rocks the School

KABOOM kicks off the event with resounding set of cadences.

KAO's "It Takes a Village" parent committee selling pizza and
snacks at intermission.

KAO's Concert Band closes the evening.

On Friday, February 3rd, KIPP Academy of Opportunity (KAO) hosted its annual Winter Jam, a music concert, celebration of the performing arts, and fun event for the KAO team and family.  Over 200 students, teachers, parents, family, and friends attended the school-based fundraiser, which raised almost $1,000 for KAO’s end-of-year field lessons.  
KAO’s drum line, KABOOM, started the night off with a bang, firing up the crowd for an evening full of great music making. In addition to KABOOM, a student vocal soloist, small wind ensemble, and the full KAO concert band performed.

LA_Prep_BandA special addition to this year’s program was the presence of some student musicians – 22 6th, 7th, and 8th graders – from KIPP LA Prep. Prep’s rock band played a set that included “Sunshine of Your Love” by Cream and “Superstition” by Stevie Wonder. According to Mr. Sauza, music teacher at KIPP LA Prep, “The KAO Winter Jam was a great experience for the kids! This was their first time performing for such a large audience outside of our school. They were extremely excited to be participating and to make music with their KIPP cousins.” 

At intermission, parents from KAO’s “It Takes a Village” parent committee sold pizza and snacks as a supplemental fundraiser, and KAO Hall buzzed with excitement. According to Mr. Roberson, the music teacher at KAO and founder and organizer of the Winter Jam, "It was a shining moment for the KAO family. I was inspired to see our community come together to support our kids' endeavors and music while helping raise money for our end-of-year field lessons. I was proud to be a part of it." 

KIPP LA is already looking forward to next year's Winter Jam and another evening of celebrating music!

  KIPP in the News

“I Am America: Job Change Spurs Passion” | CNN, February 21, 2012

"… Chang runs the KIPP Strive Academy that he founded like a business. He even implemented a paycheck system to mirror real life where students can earn rewards based on their work ethic and behavior. And like any good boss, Chang keeps a close eye on things." Watch here...

“Changed by the Bell” | Yale Herald (Yale University), February 17, 2012

Just a week after New Year’s, I attended the second annual KIPP Alumni Summit. KIPP is an acronym for the Knowledge is Power Program, a network of public charter schools which, for nearly two decades, has been educating underserved youth in cities across the country.”  Read more…

“Morning Joe Honors Atlanta Teacher” MSNBC, December 28, 2011
“We’re pleased to recognize another one of our innovators in the classroom.  Here’s Erinn Cottman, a fifth grade teacher at KIPP WAYS Academy in Atlanta who started an independent reading that, in just three weeks, has boosted test scores.” Watch here…

"Bruce and Martha Karsh Give $50 Million" Duke Today, December 5, 2011

“Duke University trustee Bruce Karsh and his wife Martha have donated $50 million to Duke for a permanent endowment to support need-based financial aid for undergraduate students from the United States and other countries, President Richard H. Brodhead announced Monday.”  Read more…


KIPP LA Schools is a non-profit organization that operates high-performing K-8 public charter schools in South and East Los Angeles. We are part of the nationwide KIPP (Knowledge Is Power Program) network, which is dedicated to preparing students in underserved communities for success in college and in life.

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KIPP LA Schools
4545 Dozier Ave.
Los Angeles, California 90022

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